Star Wars 9: The Sky of Ricewalker: A senseless, incoherent nightmare.

Gordon_4_v1legacy

New member
Aug 22, 2010
2,578
0
0
PsychedelicDiamond said:
evilthecat said:
Asita said:
Scar is prominent in that regard? He always struck me as the mousy geek to Mufasa's star quarterback (or the Iago to his Othello). What am I missing that made him stand out as queer-coded?
Here's the thing though. Look at Scar's actually behaviours and mannerisms. Is he "mousy", is he a "geek" (bear in mind that this is 1994, before the mainstreaming of geek culture so being a "geek" had very particular associations).

Scar isn't socially awkward, in fact kind of the opposite. He isn't shy. He's always melodramatic. The way he speaks is theatrical and flamboyant, his movements are expressive and exaggerated. He's not outside of conventional masculinity because he's a beta shyguy, he's excessive, he's over-the-top, he's inappropriate. In other words, he's camp.

This basically applies to most Disney villains from the period. Even Frollo, who is basically the only Disney villain I can think of who is motivated by his explicitly sexual lust for a woman, is also pretty camp (not as camp as Scar though). That's because Disney wasn't using this aesthetic to indicate that Scar was secretly a big gay, they were using it to show that he was a bad guy.

But it also made him a fun and likeable character, which is what queer audiences responded to.

I think comparing the 1994 Lion King and the 2019 Lion King is really interesting in terms of Disney's treatment of queerness and its queer audience. 1994 Disney queer-coded Scar because they wanted a villain character with a strong personality, who would be fun and over the top. 2019 Scar lacks any of that likeability, he's just a boring douche who the narrative goes out of its way to aggressively no-homo. Instead, we get WeHo Timon whose overt gayness is 100% intentional (but never actually stated), and who is basically just there as a stand-in for the queer audiences.

Basically, Disney is clearly uncomfortable with how its queer-coding of villain characters might look to a modern audience, but clearly hasn't worked out that "sassy comic relief" or "gay best friend" are far more offensive as stereotypes than "camp villain". A huge amount of queer cinema is the deliberate celebration of camp villains, it can be done in a way that's fun and empowering. What Disney has been doing with its queer characters recently isn't empowering.
I guess the most obvious example for Disney's tendency to give their villains stereotypically gay traits is Ratcliffe from Pocahontas:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DSfYrPdTKVA

He's easy to forget, because Pocahontas is easy to forget, but he illustrates the point pretty well. Those gay traits seem very archaic themselves from a modern perspective but you know, then again, the 90s where a while ago. Regardless of that, when it comes to actually representing the queer population Disney will, sooner or later, have to face the fact that that means actually depicting queer relationships. There's absolutely no point to just stating that a character is gay and maybe having him look at a character of the same gender with a lovesick expression once or twice. Just fucking show a gay relationship. It's not really all that different from depicting a straight relationship. Have husband and husband instead of husband and wife. That's it.

As long as they are incapable of depicting something as innocent as a healthy relationship out of fear of alienating people either at home or abroad it's reasonable to assume that they have absolutely zero interest in representing that part of the population. That whole "LeFou is gay, Lando Calrissian is pansexual, there's a guy talking about having had a date with a men in a self help group" shit is just... nothing. It's meaningless. It's not representation, it's just vague acknowledgement. Healthy representation is when gay love isn't depicted any differently from straight love.
Just had to re-read both of these quotes to make sure neither of you were throwing shade at Professor Ratigan.
 

Terminal Blue

Elite Member
Legacy
Apr 20, 2020
2,904
371
88
Country
United Kingdom
Hawki said:
I'm kind of left to ask at this point how many Disney villains are actually "camp."
Pretty much all the "golden age" Disney villains are, to one degree or another. Disney films are essentially musical theatre with animation. Certainly at that point, they very much have the sensibility of musical theatre.

It's not even like camp is a secret gay thing, it's a well recognised sensibility, especially in comedy and performing arts. Tim Curry is performing camp in the Rocky Horror Show, but he's also performing camp in Muppet Treasure Island. If you set out to make a character fun, especially if you're trying to make them a fun villain whose purpose is to be entertaining rather than frightening, you'll probably end up employing elements of camp.

Hawki said:
If I had to describe Scar in one word, it would be "menacing" or "manipulative."
I struggle to imagine a person, even a child, who would be genuinely "menaced" by Scar. He's basically a panto villain.

Hawki said:
You mean that plot point that was in the original film and re-introduced in the musical IIRC?
It literally wasn't in the original film.

In fact, several commentators at the time went further than I am and claimed that Stars disinterest in any of the lionesses in the film, combined with his very obviously stereotypical mannerisms, was essentially Disney trying to position the character as canonically gay. I don't agree with that, but it does show how ludicrously unsubtle the whole thing was.

Also, again, Frollo's entire character motivation is based on a conflict between his devout catholicism and his lust for a woman. He is canonically 100% heterosexual. However, the aesthetic by which this is presented to us is not.

Gordon_4 said:
Just had to re-read both of these quotes to make sure neither of you were throwing shade at Professor Ratigan.
Honestly, me pointing out that Ratigan is camp (he is) wouldn't be throwing shade, actually the opposite. I throw shade by pointing out that 2019 Scar lacks a camp aesthetic and is thus a boring non-entity who has nothing fun or interesting going on..

..although I guess that's actually just a read.
 

gorfias

Unrealistic but happy
Legacy
Apr 6, 2020
4,924
438
88
Country
USA
I thought FA was fun forgettable popcorn film until I really thought about how disappointed in it I was. There was no progress (intentionally). We've watched 6 movies so far, and now we're right back to where we were in 1977. Even Palpatine is back! I was also outraged that they had an opportunity to put our 3 heroes together again and blew it. The Last Jedi had tried some things that are interesting. Anyone should be able to learn to use the force if it is a metaphor for becoming like a Samurai. Rey's parents need not be anyone special. Next interesting idea: get rid of the light/dark dichotomy. But they appear to have chickened out. So, all that is left is to see the movie as an open hate letter to men and boys. A salvo in the war against them. I understand ROS is about trying to write Luke Skywalker out of existence. I think I'll pass.
 

Hawki

Elite Member
Legacy
Apr 5, 2020
6,908
619
118
Country
Australia
Gender
Male
evilthecat said:
Pretty much all the "golden age" Disney villains are, to one degree or another.
If you mean the Disney Renaissance as being the "golden age," then going by the films I've seen of this era:

-Gaston: Not really. He arguably starts out as being camp, but he darkens a lot towards the end. It's also at this point that Gaston becomes a true villain rather than your village jock.

-Jaffar: I can't think of anything about him that's camp. Maybe in Return of Jaffar in the 'Second Best' song sequence, but that's about it.

-Scar: See above.

-Ratcliffe: Maybe? Honestly I barely remember him.

-Frollo: Not at all.

-Hades: Yep.

That isn't every villain of this era, but I can't see a "villain = camp" train of thought for this period.

I struggle to imagine a person, even a child, who would be genuinely "menaced" by Scar. He's basically a panto villain.
I was menaced a bit by Scar as a kid, but that aside, Scar is a schemer. He's manipulative, he's sociopathic, he's power hungry, etc. I can't think of any camp moments for him. Maybe 'Be Prepared,' but that entire sequence has a dark undertone to it, and I'm not just referring to the Nazi imagery.


It literally wasn't in the original film.
You can look up the cut clip on YouTube where Scar tries to seduce Nala.

However, the aesthetic by which this is presented to us is not.
Gothic?

Um, okay.
 

gorfias

Unrealistic but happy
Legacy
Apr 6, 2020
4,924
438
88
Country
USA
CoCage said:
To the fans going overboard on the negativity to the sequel trilogy: What the fuck do you want? .
I would recommend you see the Youtube series, "Cobra Kai". Nostalgia fun that gives old fans a chance to see characters we appreciate from the past, catch up with them. There has been movement in their lives (Unlike Star Wars returning us to 1977 after 6 movies) while the old characters introduce us to interesting new characters.

Star Wars could have done this. They didn't
 

Asita

Answer Hazy, Ask Again Later
Legacy
Apr 4, 2020
2,823
420
88
Country
USA
Gender
Male
evilthecat said:
Hawki said:
You mean that plot point that was in the original film and re-introduced in the musical IIRC?
It literally wasn't in the original film.

In fact, several commentators at the time went further than I am and claimed that Stars disinterest in any of the lionesses in the film, combined with his very obviously stereotypical mannerisms, was essentially Disney trying to position the character as canonically gay. I don't agree with that, but it does show how ludicrously unsubtle the whole thing was.
Eh...you're both kinda right. The Scene/Song "The Madness of King Scar" - wherein Scar expresses that he intends to make Nala his queen - is kinda in the same boat as Aladdin's "Proud of Your Boy" number. It was something they scripted and storyboarded, but it never made it to the final cut of the film. The remake has him proposition Sarabi instead, which - while as unnecessary as him propositioning Nala - is far less creepy. To borrow from the film's inspirations for a moment, imagine if Claudius had tried to wed Ophelia rather than Gertrude. There's some political sense in marrying the queen, but pursuing his nephew's love interest is just shudder inducing, and it's unsurprising that Disney would opt to leave it on the cutting room floor.
 

BrawlMan

Lover of beat'em ups.
Legacy
Apr 3, 2020
7,759
2,066
118
Detroit, Michigan
Country
United States of America
Gender
Male
Gorfias said:
CoCage said:
To the fans going overboard on the negativity to the sequel trilogy: What the fuck do you want? .
I would recommend you see the Youtube series, "Cobra Kai". Nostalgia fun that gives old fans a chance to see characters we appreciate from the past, catch up with them. There has been movement in their lives (Unlike Star Wars returning us to 1977 after 6 movies) while the old characters introduce us to interesting new characters.

Star Wars could have done this. They didn't
There some alternate universe where it would happen, and people would still complain. Even if they did what Cobra Kai did, Carrie Fisher's unfortunate death would've smashed that plan. Overall, the sequel trilogy did fine for me.
 

gorfias

Unrealistic but happy
Legacy
Apr 6, 2020
4,924
438
88
Country
USA
CoCage said:
Gorfias said:
CoCage said:
To the fans going overboard on the negativity to the sequel trilogy: What the fuck do you want? .
I would recommend you see the Youtube series, "Cobra Kai". Nostalgia fun that gives old fans a chance to see characters we appreciate from the past, catch up with them. There has been movement in their lives (Unlike Star Wars returning us to 1977 after 6 movies) while the old characters introduce us to interesting new characters.

Star Wars could have done this. They didn't
There some alternate universe where it would happen, and people would still complain. Even if they did what Cobra Kai did, Carrie Fisher's unfortunate death would've smashed that plan. Overall, the sequel trilogy did fine for me.
Were it up to me, the Republic would have been fine BUT facing "Foundation" series type problems. Force Awakens would have our 3 heroes well, together but teaching young people about growing dangers and then, let the young go on new adventures we will care about. Cobra Kai is still clinging to the old as well as new so... not a perfect analogy. I love it and hope you get a chance to see it.
 

Gordon_4_v1legacy

New member
Aug 22, 2010
2,578
0
0
Gorfias said:
So, all that is left is to see the movie as an open hate letter to men and boys. A salvo in the war against them. I understand ROS is about trying to write Luke Skywalker out of existence. I think I'll pass.
That is both asinine and incorrect.
 

PsychedelicDiamond

Wild at Heart and weird on top
Legacy
Apr 4, 2020
1,546
198
68
Gorfias said:
I thought FA was fun forgettable popcorn film until I really thought about how disappointed in it I was. There was no progress (intentionally). We've watched 6 movies so far, and now we're right back to where we were in 1977. Even Palpatine is back! I was also outraged that they had an opportunity to put our 3 heroes together again and blew it. The Last Jedi had tried some things that are interesting. Anyone should be able to learn to use the force if it is a metaphor for becoming like a Samurai. Rey's parents need not be anyone special. Next interesting idea: get rid of the light/dark dichotomy. But they appear to have chickened out. So, all that is left is to see the movie as an open hate letter to men and boys. A salvo in the war against them. I understand ROS is about trying to write Luke Skywalker out of existence. I think I'll pass.
Why would any movie be a "hate letter" to literally half of the world's population?
 

Kyrian007

Officially no longer the Enemy of the People
Legacy
Apr 6, 2020
2,086
123
68
Kansas
Country
U.S.A.
Gender
Male
PsychedelicDiamond said:
Gorfias said:
I thought FA was fun forgettable popcorn film until I really thought about how disappointed in it I was. There was no progress (intentionally). We've watched 6 movies so far, and now we're right back to where we were in 1977. Even Palpatine is back! I was also outraged that they had an opportunity to put our 3 heroes together again and blew it. The Last Jedi had tried some things that are interesting. Anyone should be able to learn to use the force if it is a metaphor for becoming like a Samurai. Rey's parents need not be anyone special. Next interesting idea: get rid of the light/dark dichotomy. But they appear to have chickened out. So, all that is left is to see the movie as an open hate letter to men and boys. A salvo in the war against them. I understand ROS is about trying to write Luke Skywalker out of existence. I think I'll pass.
Why would any movie be a "hate letter" to literally half of the world's population?
Its the persecution complex of the same type of person who believes in a "war on Christmas."
 

Terminal Blue

Elite Member
Legacy
Apr 20, 2020
2,904
371
88
Country
United Kingdom
Hawki said:
-Gaston: Not really. He arguably starts out as being camp, but he darkens a lot towards the end. It's also at this point that Gaston becomes a true villain rather than your village jock.
Why would being a villain preclude him from being camp?

Gaston is a Dandy. That's his entire motivation. On the surface he's this super-masc ideal, but he's also obsessed with his own appearance in a way that is actually very foppish. All of his "dark" actions stem from this desire to fill this role of being the town hero everyone admires, because that role is an affectation.

Hawki said:
I can't think of anything about him that's camp.
Did you watch it?

Leaving aside the fact that he is doing a gay voice, he's literally wearing dramatic eyeliner.

I mean, Jafar is a bit complex because he's an orientalist stereotype, which very much overlaps with the idea of being femmey and decadent (and gay), but he is still noticably more femme than any other male character in the same setting.

Hawki said:
That isn't every villain of this era, but I can't see a "villain = camp" train of thought for this period.
That's fine, don't.

This isn't heterosexual culture. Noone expects you to see it.

Hawki said:
Affected. Contrived. Melodramatic.

You know, camp.
 

Batou667

New member
Oct 5, 2011
2,239
0
0
evilthecat said:
Gaston is a Dandy. That's his entire motivation. On the surface he's this super-masc ideal, but he's also obsessed with his own appearance in a way that is actually very foppish.
I was about to challenge you on the subject of Disney villains who are very masculine, like Tarzan's Clayton or Beauty's Gaston, but it looks like you've already covered that. To begin with it sounded like you were criticising the use of feminine or gay elements in signposting villainous characters, but you're now using a broad enough definition for even the ultra virile, five-dozen-eggs-eating, not-an-inch-hairless Gaston to be considered camp? You and I are using very different dictionaries, apparently.

The follow up question would then be, since you see campness everywhere and actually think it's a positive quality in that it's a requisite for a fun, interesting character; what's your beef?

evilthecat said:
I mean, Jafar is a bit complex because he's an orientalist stereotype, which very much overlaps with the idea of being femmey and decadent (and gay), but he is still noticably more femme than any other male character in the same setting.
Something that occurred to me a while ago is that Jafar is, design wise, basically the male equivalent of Cruella DeVille. The resemblance is uncanny - the wild eyes, the wide mouth, the comically bony frame. Trying to argue that this is a feminine (or "femmey" if that's the newspeak version) aesthetic is a dead-end because Jafar is about as feminine as Cruella is masculine - which is to say, not much. They're both manic, scheming, rake-thin old coots; barely sexualised at all except when it's to evoke disgust or a laugh.

As for "orientalist stereotype" - oh, come on, if you're going to invoke that then you'd have to also apply it to the film's protagonists too, since that's the setting and the aesthetic they inhabit.

Final point. You said you'll stop calling out Disney's homophobia when they stop being homophobic. The purpose of me listing notable villains from the last 30 years of Disney films was to hammer the point that if Disney have in the past used obvious homophobic tropes, that's something that's been almost completely absent in the last 20 years. Disney villains these days are much more likely to be males of the straight acting (Hans) or conservative (Lots-o-Huggin Bear, Stinky Pete, Runeard) varieties, or else females. So, umm, yay?
 

Elvis Starburst

Unprofessional Rant Artist
Legacy
Apr 5, 2020
2,165
158
68
CoCage said:
To the fans going overboard on the negativity to the sequel trilogy: What the fuck do you want?
Dunno if I'd call myself overzealous, but I know I at least wanted a trilogy of movies that was handled with proper attention and care that simultaneously wasn't passed around to people like the college party girl. A trilogy that didn't add so many ultimately pointless/worthless characters in asinine sequences that didn't go anywhere. At least with the prequel trilogy I felt like there was a concise vision in place, despite changes being made after the response to Episode 1
 

Catfood220

Elite Member
Legacy
Apr 3, 2020
1,902
133
68
Gorfias said:
So, all that is left is to see the movie as an open hate letter to men and boys. A salvo in the war against them. I understand ROS is about trying to write Luke Skywalker out of existence. I think I'll pass.
I have no idea what you are dribbling on about. As a man and a boy at heart, I felt no hate salvo fired at me from the film. Maybe I'm not looking at the right things to get upset about. Or looking at all. Also, Luke Skywalker is actually in the film. He shows up as a ghost towards the end of the film and again at the end of the film. Spoilers. If they were writing him out, they could of just you know, not put him in the film and never mention him again.

I'm going to stop writing now or I'm going to get myself in trouble.
 

Catfood220

Elite Member
Legacy
Apr 3, 2020
1,902
133
68
altnameJag said:
"Oh noes, Rey accidentally killed Chewie with force light-oh he's fine"
That really bugged me more than it should have done I was like "oh wow, they killed off Chewie, that's brave...oh wait, he's alive and well in the very next scene". I mean, if they wanted that moment to mean anything at all, they could have kept the fact that he was alive a secret until a raid on a First Order outpost further into the film and not have him rescued 30 seconds after he "died". Maybe they didn't want to upset the kids or something, I don't know.
 

EvilRoy

The face I make when I see unguarded pie.
Legacy
Apr 4, 2020
1,489
104
68
Batou667 said:
evilthecat said:
Gaston is a Dandy. That's his entire motivation. On the surface he's this super-masc ideal, but he's also obsessed with his own appearance in a way that is actually very foppish.
I was about to challenge you on the subject of Disney villains who are very masculine, like Tarzan's Clayton or Beauty's Gaston, but it looks like you've already covered that. To begin with it sounded like you were criticising the use of feminine or gay elements in signposting villainous characters, but you're now using a broad enough definition for even the ultra virile, five-dozen-eggs-eating, non-an-inch-hairless Gaston to be considered camp? You and I are using very different dictionaries, apparently.
Thanks to a weird conversation in a weird place that I won't get too far into, I've come across this in the past. I look a little like Gaston. Not exactly the same, but yes the "masculine jaw, five-dozen-eggs, poorly shaven bear" descriptors all broadly apply to me. And the use of the term "bear" is apropos because that's the kind of gay I apparently look like. Through this conversation I learned that basically everything except for extreme dudebro signalling is super gay, and even the dudebros secretly want it too.

On a personal level I really think that the signalling used by Disney villains had way more to do with the appearances and airs of nobility and aristocracy - and the implicit negativity in taking on the airs of a class that you are not a part of - than anything else, but there can be only gay I guess.
 

Trunkage

Nascent Orca
Legacy
Apr 3, 2020
5,603
1,101
118
Brisbane
Gender
Cyborg
PsychedelicDiamond said:
Gorfias said:
I thought FA was fun forgettable popcorn film until I really thought about how disappointed in it I was. There was no progress (intentionally). We've watched 6 movies so far, and now we're right back to where we were in 1977. Even Palpatine is back! I was also outraged that they had an opportunity to put our 3 heroes together again and blew it. The Last Jedi had tried some things that are interesting. Anyone should be able to learn to use the force if it is a metaphor for becoming like a Samurai. Rey's parents need not be anyone special. Next interesting idea: get rid of the light/dark dichotomy. But they appear to have chickened out. So, all that is left is to see the movie as an open hate letter to men and boys. A salvo in the war against them. I understand ROS is about trying to write Luke Skywalker out of existence. I think I'll pass.
Why would any movie be a "hate letter" to literally half of the world's population?
Also, does this make New Hope Luke Skywalker a "hate letter" to girls and women?
 

Batou667

New member
Oct 5, 2011
2,239
0
0
EvilRoy said:
On a personal level I really think that the signalling used by Disney villains had way more to do with the appearances and airs of nobility and aristocracy - and the implicit negativity in taking on the airs of a class that you are not a part of - than anything else, but there can be only gay I guess.
Bingo. I alluded to this before with my observation that in a series of animated features dominated by American voice talent, the villains frequently have British accents - because it sounds aristocratic and lends itself well to an arrogant or pompous character. While Disney villains span the range from beefcake to weedy fop to drag queen to femme fatale, what they tend to have in common is a greed for (unearned) power... as opposed to all the ostensibly benevolent but unelected monarchies which go largely unexamined, but that's a point for another discussion. Having the villain put on condescending airs well above their station is a way of communicating that. That comes across in the voice acting, visual design, and animated mannerisms.

I would say that historically Disney has used the foppish, weak-but-cruel aristocrat template to signal its bad guys; the sexual or gendered component is in my opinion likely to be mostly incidental - if not outright imagined.
 

Chimpzy_v1legacy

Warning! Contains bananas!
Jun 21, 2009
4,791
0
0
trunkage said:
PsychedelicDiamond said:
Gorfias said:
Why would any movie be a "hate letter" to literally half of the world's population?
Also, does this make New Hope Luke Skywalker a "hate letter" to girls and women?
Maybe, but Empire Strikes Back is absolutely a hate letter to dads.

I mean Vader tells Luke he's his father, Luke goes "NOOOOOOOO" all superdramatically and then even throws himself down a really deep hole. Movie hates dads. Can't get any more clear that.