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  1. #1
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    Default Racism done right and wrong in fiction

    I personally think Seth McFarlan is racist. It's a wee bit annoying. He's either racist of doesn't understand how to correctly say a racist joke without looking like an asshole.

    Trey Parker and Matt Stone don't come off as racist to me at all.

    The difference is in Shows by Seth McFarlan there will be a black man doing something that fits into a stereotype and is considered very racist. Other minorities in his shows end up doing things that makes it so the person who appears to be a racist is whomever wrote the script.

    Where in shows like south park there's a character in the show who's a racist and everyone in the show points out this is wrong. His racism can still be used as a joke with everyone else looking down on him for it because it never displays any of the racial idea's to be true. It just has a character who is a racist.

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    Mojibake sprinkles's Avatar
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    In South Park the joke is probably the fact that anyone says any behavior is wrong.

    I don't think it is necessary to point out that something is wrong (in fiction) when it is obviously wrong. Doing that all the time is pretty much like pulling an Aesop and gets cheesy after a while.

    At the same time, not showing it being pointed out as wrong is not necessarily any kind of author tract either. Some times the whole point of something is to BE wrong. (I'm looking at you, Family Guy)

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    Cheeseburgers freeeekyyy's Avatar
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    Yeah, I kind of got the idea that seth mcfarlane might be a racist too. I'm not sure though. I think it's hard to make that kind of judgment without at least having some sort of personal knowledge of him. All we have is his tv show, which I don't think tells nearly enough about him to say. Anybody ever seen any interviews with him?
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    Quote Originally Posted by freeeekyyy View Post
    Yeah, I kind of got the idea that seth mcfarlane might be a racist too. I'm not sure though. I think it's hard to make that kind of judgment without at least having some sort of personal knowledge of him. All we have is his tv show, which I don't think tells nearly enough about him to say. Anybody ever seen any interviews with him?
    Pretty much how I feel.
    I personally don't like most of his shows because of the racial tones added to it and end up a lot of times saying "Yeah, that's not funny... fuck this show." And not watching it. I'm more annoyed when my friends say things they heard from family guy to me. Like reaching out and touching my hair then saying it's like a sheep... which is pretty damn obnoxious.

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    Say whhhhhhhat? I loathe South Park. I think the creators come off ign'ant. It's always interesting to me to see what white person thinks they have a comedic pass or "gets racism". Because the key to making racism funny is to "get it" and then play on it. Some people mistake stereotyping for satire. When I look at old All In The Family I'm like WTF the audience is not laughing with but laughing at stereotypes. At the time it was considering 'edgy' or 'groundbreaking' because the creators wanted to 'deal with sensitive topics like racism'. Whatevs. Not much different from Good Times and other shows which were written mostly by white male writers and had various actors protesting the stereotypical portrayal of members. It was just another minstrel show in some respects.

    Seth McFarlan's sense of humor is not as rough around the edges or unsophisticated, even though he deals with an "intellectually handicapped" main character and lots of potty humor and homoerotic jokes. I think the humor is much more clever. Is it racist? Sure, you could say that, some jokes more than others.

    I think all of that above can be wrapped into the idea that "with humor, there are no sacred cows and taboo subjects" a la Ricky Gervais. It's like authors who say "I can write about anything I want, even if I have no first-hand experience or research into the subject - you can't reign in my creative jeenius!?!?!?!!!" It's why you get people who simply aren't funny who think screaming racial epithets is "edgy" and straight married middle aged white men who pretend to be Muslim lesbian journalists and start graphic online affairs with women a continent away. When you don't really have much racism/sexism/etc. to deal with yourself, it's pretty easy to fun of it and fantasize "what if".

    If you look at humor dealing with race by comedians of color (Margaret Cho, Paul Mooney) the humor cuts a very different way. It's generally more an analysis of isms and society, more cutting and critical, and less a "haha, lets laugh at the usual stereotype because it's funny" variety.
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  6. #6
    Cheeseburgers freeeekyyy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CzeCze View Post
    Say whhhhhhhat? I loathe South Park. I think the creators come off ign'ant. It's always interesting to me to see what white person thinks they have a comedic pass or "gets racism". Because the key to making racism funny is to "get it" and then play on it. Some people mistake stereotyping for satire. When I look at old All In The Family I'm like WTF the audience is not laughing with but laughing at stereotypes. At the time it was considering 'edgy' or 'groundbreaking' because the creators wanted to 'deal with sensitive topics like racism'. Whatevs. Not much different from Good Times and other shows which were written mostly by white male writers and had various actors protesting the stereotypical portrayal of members. It was just another minstrel show in some respects.

    Seth McFarlan's sense of humor is not as rough around the edges or unsophisticated, even though he deals with an "intellectually handicapped" main character and lots of potty humor and homoerotic jokes. I think the humor is much more clever. Is it racist? Sure, you could say that, some jokes more than others.

    I think all of that above can be wrapped into the idea that "with humor, there are no sacred cows and taboo subjects" a la Ricky Gervais. It's like authors who say "I can write about anything I want, even if I have no first-hand experience or research into the subject - you can't reign in my creative jeenius!?!?!?!!!" It's why you get people who simply aren't funny who think screaming racial epithets is "edgy" and straight married middle aged white men who pretend to be Muslim lesbian journalists and start graphic online affairs with women a continent away. When you don't really have much racism/sexism/etc. to deal with yourself, it's pretty easy to fun of it and fantasize "what if".

    If you look at humor dealing with race by comedians of color (Margaret Cho, Paul Mooney) the humor cuts a very different way. It's generally more an analysis of isms and society, more cutting and critical, and less a "haha, lets laugh at the usual stereotype because it's funny" variety.
    I don't know if it was the OPs intent to make a south park thread, but if you think those criticisms apply to it, I don't think you've watched it enough, or it simply isn't your type of humor. It's never about laughing at the racial stereotypes, but the ridiculousness of the characters and their racism. Eric Cartman is a racist. He's hated for it. There's nothing in any way that promotes that at all. The joke is his anti-semitism, not jews themselves. (Or whatever other character and race may be involved.) Do you see the difference?
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  7. #7
    Mojibake sprinkles's Avatar
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    @freeeekyyy

    If nobody hated Cartman would it become a racist show written by a racist?

    Does a work have to tell you how you are supposed to feel about it?

    My take is that it doesn't have to tell you anything about how to judge it, and if it does tell you, that actually detracts from it - unless it is done for ironic purposes.

    You could have an entire show full of Cartmans and it still doesn't necessarily promote racism. Unless of course you need someone else to tell you what you're supposed to think about it.

    Edit:
    Personally I can hate Cartman all by myself without the other characters support.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ricin View Post
    Pretty much how I feel.
    I personally don't like most of his shows because of the racial tones added to it and end up a lot of times saying "Yeah, that's not funny... fuck this show." And not watching it. I'm more annoyed when my friends say things they heard from family guy to me. Like reaching out and touching my hair then saying it's like a sheep... which is pretty damn obnoxious.
    Those people should not be watching television because they obviously can't handle it.

    Actually if I had my way, nobody would watch television.

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    Quote Originally Posted by freeeekyyy View Post
    I don't know if it was the OPs intent to make a south park thread
    It wasn't. The intent was to make a thread pointing out the differences between fiction where racism is done correctly vs. done wrong. Like one that simply has a racist character in it vs. one where minorities fit a racial stereotype and that's something that's poked fun at.
    , but if you think those criticisms apply to it, I don't think you've watched it enough, or it simply isn't your type of humor. It's never about laughing at the racial stereotypes, but the ridiculousness of the characters and their racism. Eric Cartman is a racist. He's hated for it. There's nothing in any way that promotes that at all. The joke is his anti-semitism, not jews themselves. (Or whatever other character and race may be involved.) Do you see the difference?
    Pretty much. Throughout the show Eric Cartman is shown as a racist and believes many other stereotypes. Usually the joke is that he's stupid for thinking this way and it blows up in his face so the viewers are seeing a racist act like an asshole and then get screwed for it. It's one of those things where the horrible things that happen to Cartman are funny because he's a selfish bigoted sociopath but otherwise wouldn't be that funny. A character who, a lot of times, is designed for the audience to be happy when misfortune comes his way.

    The cleveland show is a piece of shit tv show about black people written by a white man. It has a black family fitting into various stereotypes and constantly pokes fun at black people and basically says this is the way black are. It was bad enough in Family guy when they did that occasionally. The difference is that in Family guy there aren't really racist characters but the characters in the show often fit racial stereotypes which makes me think the author might just be racist. And south park has a racist character, the joke isn't on the jews, the redheads, etc.. The joke is on Cartman being that ignorant.

    Quote Originally Posted by CzeCze View Post
    Say whhhhhhhat? I loathe South Park. I think the creators come off ign'ant. It's always interesting to me to see what white person thinks they have a comedic pass or "gets racism". Because the key to making racism funny is to "get it" and then play on it. Some people mistake stereotyping for satire. When I look at old All In The Family I'm like WTF the audience is not laughing with but laughing at stereotypes. At the time it was considering 'edgy' or 'groundbreaking' because the creators wanted to 'deal with sensitive topics like racism'. Whatevs. Not much different from Good Times and other shows which were written mostly by white male writers and had various actors protesting the stereotypical portrayal of members. It was just another minstrel show in some respects.

    Seth McFarlan's sense of humor is not as rough around the edges or unsophisticated, even though he deals with an "intellectually handicapped" main character and lots of potty humor and homoerotic jokes. I think the humor is much more clever. Is it racist? Sure, you could say that, some jokes more than others.

    I think all of that above can be wrapped into the idea that "with humor, there are no sacred cows and taboo subjects" a la Ricky Gervais. It's like authors who say "I can write about anything I want, even if I have no first-hand experience or research into the subject - you can't reign in my creative jeenius!?!?!?!!!" It's why you get people who simply aren't funny who think screaming racial epithets is "edgy" and straight married middle aged white men who pretend to be Muslim lesbian journalists and start graphic online affairs with women a continent away. When you don't really have much racism/sexism/etc. to deal with yourself, it's pretty easy to fun of it and fantasize "what if".

    If you look at humor dealing with race by comedians of color (Margaret Cho, Paul Mooney) the humor cuts a very different way. It's generally more an analysis of isms and society, more cutting and critical, and less a "haha, lets laugh at the usual stereotype because it's funny" variety.
    I'm not sure you've watched much of south park.
    It really isn't about the stereotype as much as it's showing a racist character who's hated for being that way. He makes fun of Kyle for being jewish and kenny for being poor and people say he's an asshole. Also it backfires a lot on him. Stan, Kyle, and Kenny have all said [multiple types] that they hate cartman and he's not their friend. Sometimes they say he's incapable of empathy and feeling and they feel sorry for him which is why they hang out with him.


    Being a minority I do tend to notice a lot of the time when someone simply doesn't get it. Listening to most minorities make jokes that're racial [like chris rock] you tend to notice an underlying message saying "This is what this shit is like!!! It fucking sucks, don't you fucking get it, being black isn't fun. We have to work extra fucking hard to make it in life and it still fucking sucks." e.g. Chris rock jokes about how he's a rich black guy. Mentions he's in a room full of white people and says not a single one of them would trade places with him. If the busboy was given the opportunity he's say "Yeah, I'm gonna ride this being white thing out."

    Generally that's what minorities comedy is like when it's racial.

  10. #10
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    *throws a sledge hammer through the television*

    I think people have had about enough of this infernal abomination.

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