Friday, June 23, 2017

Femslash Friday: L Word

Entertainment Weekly got (some of) The L Word cast back together for a reunion chat and photo shoot.

I miss that show so much.

From the chat:
[Erin] Daniels: We all went to sing karaoke together once.
Sarah Shahi (Carmen): What did you sing?
[Jennifer] Beals: Oh, I had to do “What a Feeling.” They poured water on me with a Perrier bottle. [Beals starred in the iconic 1983 film Flashdance.]
Daniels: Then the three of us got up and sang “Maniac.” We clearly got over our intimidation factor at that point.
Also, the conversation references the Sunday night viewings that were held at (primarily) lesbian bars across the country during the 2004-2009 period the show ran. You know, back when we still had lesbian bars. Anyway, ladies, brother-sestras, and non-binary individuals, I'm here to tell you that you haven't truly known fear until you've been angrily shushed by 75 queer women trying desperately to hear what's happening this week on The L Word.

Enjoy this fan vid of funny moments:



Preferred Pairing: Dana/Lara (the soup chef)

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

#Winning

The National Organization for Marriage (NOM) held its annual anti-equality "March for Marriage" in Washington, DC over the weekend.

Per Right Wing Watch, about 50 people attended what seemed to be an awkward display:
"Fifteen minutes before the event was scheduled to begin, about 20 adults were milling around an empty stage while several children worked to unfurl large red and blue banners to carry during the march. One passerby wondered whether they were going to a kite festival. Gradually, a few more participants arrived, including five men wearing the signature capes of the group Tradition, Family and Property and carrying a 'Honk for Traditional Marriage' sign."
Despite this sad showing, NOM activists are reported to be looking forward to the opportunity for the US Supreme Court's composition to change and, accordingly, for the Obergefell decision to be reversed.

It's tempting at this juncture to scoff at their chances, but I advise against overconfidence.

Anti-LGBT activists talk a lot about "the will of the people," but they don't seem all that interested, actually, in the will of the people.

As I noted recently, Donald Trump is a deeply-unpopular politician who lost the popular vote in the 2016 election. In addition to these factors, that he is also under investigation for having ties to a country that tampered with the election in which he lost severely undermines his legitimacy.

The day after his Inauguration, the largest protest in US history took place, with approximately 2-4 million attendees - vastly outnumbering NOM's little event.

Same-sex marriage, in contrast to Trump's unpopularity, is now accepted by 64% of Americans.

To think that Trump, with his questionable legitimacy and historic unpopularity, could appoint another fringe conservative to the Supreme Court who would potentially overturn a popular decision .... well, that's a lot of things - chief among them a constitutional crisis, perhaps. What it definitively would not be is "the will of the people."

NOM and the far right have forever lost that argument in the United States.

Of course, we've known all along that the "will of the people" argument was usually a mask that covered more unsavory opinions about queers.

Again, via Right Wing News, a quote from one of the speakers at the NOM march:
“We left God,” she said, “then we allowed ourselves to be aligned with ungodly movements. This gay rights movement is ungodly, it’s from the pit of hell.”
If a Trump-stacked Supreme Court ultimately strips same-sex couples of marriage rights, make no mistake that bigotry like this will have enabled it.

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Recap: Supergirl 2.13 "Mr. & Mrs. Mxyptlk"

Okay, this one was odd.

It's Valentine's Day and a fifth-dimensional being, Mxyptlk, visits Kara and tells her that he's going to marry her. Fifth-dimensional beings have the ability to warp our reality and bend it to their whims. Except, they can't make people in our dimension fall in love with them. For reasons.The physics of it aren't clear.

Kara says no, multiple times, but Mxy doesn't take no for an answer. He snaps his fingers and Kara appears in Vera Wang and Mxy vows to get her to change her mind. And then he disappears. Charming (not charming).


Anyway, the way to get Mxy to go away for good is to get him to say his name backwards. I don't understand the physics of that either, but that's fine, I guess.

There's then some general Mon-El/Mxy rivalry and pissing-contests. Yawn yawn yawn shrug.  Kara doesn't want to deal with the Mon-El/Mxy macho swordfighting, on top of getting Mxy off of Earth, so she tells Mon-El that she'll deal with Mxy in her own way. Mon-El blabbers something about "defending her honor" and he implies that Kara likes the attention of Mxy, and at this point I start to understand some of the Mon-El hate within fandom.

Moving on to the Alex/Maggie front, Maggie shares with Alex that she HATES Valentine's Day. Alex is like, "Me too." But, she doesn't mean it because she makes this face.


Alex goes to Kara for advice and Kara says that Alex should create a "tailor-made" Valentine's Day for Maggie.

At Close Encounters, Winn is enjoying a lager when he meets Lyra, an alien whose spirit animal seems to be Anya Jenkins. She's very brash, I mean. Winn and Lyra then start hooking up. I told you Winn was the Xander of Supergirl.


Interlude: I haven't sufficiently appreciated Supergirl's prowess in the Season 2 recaps. So, here's an image of her catching a bullet. Woof!


Back to Maggie and Alex, Alex prepares a surprise Valentine's Day thing for Maggie, with scotch and tiramisu. But, Maggie gets really upset and explains that she had a really bad coming out experience with her family and that's why she hates Valentine's Day. Then, she leaves.

Speaking of which, Mon-El steals a weapon from the DEO and challenges Mxy to a duel to the death. It doesn't go so well for Mon-El and Supergirls swoops in and says she'll marry Mxy. Mon-El begs her not to, but she says her mind is made up. I feel like this is a trick, but neither Mxy nor Mon-El realize it.

It turns out, Supergirl is tricking Mxy because of course she is. What about her would make anyone think she'd randomly agree to marry some rando dude? She has Mxy meet her at the Fortress of Solitude and then tells him that love isn't about making demands on people. She then sets the atomic core of the Fortress to explode, effectively threatening to kill herself, and has set the cancellation code to Mxy's name spelled backwards. He types in the code and then realizes his huge mistake.


Mxy then calls Supergirl "a nasty woman" and disappears into the fifth dimension.

(Pause.)

Hold on, just .... just let me just try something:
PMURT
(Pause.)

Damn.

ANYway, later on, Maggie and Alex make up and Mon-El apologizes to Kara for being "an ass." I guess the theme of this episode is "Listen To Your Partner and Respect Their Decisions."


Deep Thought of the Week: Speaking of protagonists randomly (or not) falling in love with a Brand New Male Character, remember in Lost Girl when Bo randomly announced she was in love with Rainer?  That was some weird shit.

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

A Toast to the Toast

Since The Toast stopped publishing about a year ago, I've missed the feminist site at least once per week. Particularly the "If X were your girlfriend/boyfriend" series, the civil quirky discourse, and the unapologetic deletion of troll comments.

Sarah Scoles at Motherboard ran a profile on The Toast and co-founder Mallory Ortberg today, if you're interested.

Monday, June 12, 2017

BernieCon 2017

So, Bernie Sanders and his fans held an exclusive "People's Summit" in Chicago over the weekend.

Per the website, attendance was limited, so people had to "apply to register" and wait 7-10 days to see if they were approved to register.

Per the site's "Diversity and Inclusion" page, the aim with this process was to select for diversity and for attendees who reflected their "political vision," which a first come, first serve registration process would not achieve.

My observation about this process isn't a criticism. Event organizers can select attendees in any lawful manner they choose.

It's more an observation that an event purportedly for The People also seemed to have a political test, and one that at least from the website wasn't all that transparent. Judging by the hashtag on Twitter over the weekend, it looked like a predominately pro-Bernie/anti-Democrat space. In my experience interacting with very pro-Bernie people, they often present themselves as the vanguard of progressivism in the United States, yet use "support for Bernie" as a litmus test, rather than the issues themselves, as to whether someone else is truly a progressive.

I have serious disagreements with this approach.

In all likelihood, I agree with many Bernie fans on the issues probably, I'd say, 75-95% of the time.  Yet, I also believe that Bernie legitimately lost the Democratic Primary to Hillary Clinton. She simply had more votes than him.

I also believe that he never had a real plan for implementing his vision within the constraints and realities of Republican power and obstruction within our political system, as indicated by his disastrous New York Daily News interview over a year ago.

Simply put, his campaign also had flaws, flaws that are often not talked about because of his fans' intense need to continue believing that "the DNC" "rigged" the contest against him. Bernie Sanders could do a lot to unite the left right now, but the fact that he chooses to not shut this myth down or address the flaws of his campaign are probably within the top five impediments to progressive unity going forward.

Many progressives supported Hillary Clinton over Bernie Sanders and yet are consistently erased or dismissed as uninformed shills. Many people, meanwhile, view Bernie as the leader of the leftist revolution, despite him having accomplished as of yet very little in his political career. Because he holds this place of prominence for some people, he could shut down some of the abuse that Clinton supporters continue to receive.

But, he chooses not to. And, because he chooses not to, as long as Bernie Sanders is hailed as the leader of "the revolution," the left will never be united. Indeed, from my perspective, he and his fans care more about trying to change the hearts of bigoted Trump supporters than they do about giving Hillary Clinton supporters any assumption of good faith or intelligence with respect to politics.

And holy shit, I can't believe I still have to talk about Bernie Sanders in June 2017 when an authoritarian shitlord is in power.

In conclusion, I storified my tweets about the Bernie convention over the weekend:

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Recap: Supergirl 2.12 "Luthors"

Lena's back. FINALLY!

But first, there's a group scene at Close Encounters. Specifically, Winn and James are stoked to meet Alex's new "mystery guy" and are shocked when the "guy" turns out to be Maggie Sawyer. Here, I want to mostly point out that Papa Hank knew the truth all along. Sure, he's psychic, but still, I'm sure he would have picked up on it anyway.


In Luthor news, Lena's mom, Lillian, is on trial. I forget what she did so let's just call it Evil Luthor Businiess. I think the point is that we're supposed to wonder whether Lena, too, is an Evil Luthor or if she can rise above her familial disposition.

Kara has faith in Lena, for some reason, and we're supposed to wonder if her faith is misplaced gullibility. Kara believes in Lena and visits Lena and they sit on the couch together tearing their donuts apart. I don't even mean that in a dirty way. Kara brings Lena a bag of donuts, I guess to engage in "sinful eating" together, but literally zero actual bites are taken. I watched. What is the point even? Just make out already, ladies. The sexual tension is obvious.


Lena also visits her mom in jail and her mom tells her she really is a Luthor, by blood. I guess there was some confusion about that. Her mom also tries to vaguely recruit Lena into Cadmus.

At the trial, I then remember that Lillian is head of Cadmus and they want to eradicate aliens from Earth. Oh yeah. That. One of the key witnesses during the trial, Metallo, sort of hulks out on kryptonite and frees Lillian. To escape, they put Supergirl in a classic "You can capture me or you can save the humans" situation, knowing that Supergirl, being Supergirl, will save the innocent humans every time.

Supergirl, Alex, and Maggie then wonder who gave Metallo the kryptonite that he used to help free Lillian. It turns out..... Lena was the only person who visited the jail the previous night. While Kara goes to question Lena, Maggie shows up and puts Lena in 'cuffs and takes her down to the station.


Oh dear. I wonder how many fanfics this scene has launched. But I digress. Kara is NOT happy with Maggie. And, to make things worse, Snapper Trapper wants the story of Lena's arrest on the front page of the paper.

However, it turns out that while Lena is in jail, Metallo kidnaps her. James and everyone at the DEO think Metallo broke her out of jail and that this proves that Lena is actually evil. Despite all the evidence, Kara still believes that Lena is innocent. People don't understand why Kara keeps believing in Lena. But we know. We all know.

Metallo then takes Lena to meet up with Lillian and they go to some sort of vault that has some super weapons or something. Lillian tries to convince Lena to commit to joining Cadmus. They also need her blood to open the vault. So they're basically just using her. Lena refuses to open the vault, but Lillian's Cadmus goons make her. Lillian is mean.


At the DEO, Winn does his computer magic and realizes that Lena actually is innocent. Miraculously, at the exact same time, the DEO finds out that Lena is at the vault with Cadmus and ascertains their exact location. So, Supergirl and J'onn fly there in a jiffy and rescue Lena.

Lena is vindicated. And, Kara writes a story about it, leading Lena to send her a bunch of flowers and say that she's never had a friend like Kara before. Just a couple of 100% heterosexual women hanging out, you know.

In the final scene, however, we see a flashback of Lena beating her brother Lex at chess and saying, "I really like this game." So now Lena's morality is questionable. But, I want to believe.

Oh, there's also some Kara/Mon-El flirting. (Shrug)


Deep Thought of the Week: This might sound greedy, but I'm ready for a Supergirl/Wonder Woman crossover.

Quote of the Day

"Listening to talking heads on both the left and the right, you’d think that America is facing a freedom of speech crisis. But the crisis isn’t what it’s made out to be. The Jonathan Chaits and Frank Brunis and Sean Hannitys of the world are not lacking in a freedom to speak, nor are the white conservatives on college campuses they seem so worried about. It’s women and people of color who struggle the most finding a platform – but there is a conspicuous lack of concern about that by free speech crusaders.

When Bill O’Reilly and the late Roger Ailes were paid tens of millions of dollars for stepping down from their jobs – far more than the settlements that the women they were accused of sexually harassing received – they weren’t being silenced. And Bill Maher getting deserved blowback for saying 'house nigga' doesn’t make him struggle to speak freely.

Those of us who are routinely called 'bitch', 'faggot' or 'nigger' on the regular –and who are threatened with violence and death – have a much harder time accessing the right of 'free speech.'"
Thrasher goes on to acknowledge both the "uncompensated cost" of this harassment and that harassers disproportionately target women and people of color. Meanwhile, members of the white male media establishment perpetuate a false "both sides" equivalence that posits that it's better to tolerate hateful intolerance than it is to keep people safe.

Easy for them to say.

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

Dispatches From the Queer Resistance (No. 3)

Over at Shakesville, I recapped some current events and political news for Pride Month.

Check it out!

Monday, June 5, 2017

Reporting Live From the "Nothing Is Racist: A White Memoir" Files

It seems to me that one of the lowest possible bars that white people have for not being racist toward Black people is to not say the n-word.

But, take Bill Maher saying it recently, for instance, and my oh my all the passes white people - even those on the left - give him for it. One of the general arguments I saw many a white person make  is that Maher was "just joking." Some of them then jumped to the conclusion that comedy would cease to exist if white people couldn't say the n-word anymore, which mostly is a statement to how pathetic some white people's sense of humors are.

Another argument I saw was that Maher opposes Trump, so if Maher says the n-word, it's "divisive" or "damaging" to "the resistance" to call him racist. More divisive, we are to suppose, than being racist.

This whitesplaining fits into the larger leftbro narrative that nothing really is racist if you just understand where white people are coming from, "identity politics" are unimportant side issues, and it's wrong in general to call people racist or, gods forbid, deplorables.



Oh. Also, I have a new Personal Twitter Rule: Pre-emptively block anyone who follows me who has anything resembling "No sense of humor? Easily offended? F*ck you!" in their Twitter bio, even if they hate Donald Trump.

Friday, June 2, 2017

The Hard Is What Makes It Great

It's been awhile since I've made an A League Of Their Own reference in Fannie's Room, so let's celebrate with a special Hillary Clinton/pop culture confluence today AND cause those enlightened snobbish leftists who hate both pop culture and Clinton to combust into a puddle of weeping rose petals.

Did you know that during Hillary Clinton's recent Wellesley commencement address, she called A League Of Their Own one of her favorite movies?! She did so while referencing the scene below, in which Jimmy is convincing star player Dottie not to quit:


I think a re-watch is in order soon.

Thursday, June 1, 2017

Quote of the Day

Have you read Rebecca Traister's piece at New York magazine on Hillary Clinton's post-election life?  Even though some people notoriously want her to go away, I'm glad that she's not.

There's a lot to say about Traister's piece, which I think is great, but one part in particular highlights how low the bar now is for what counts as presidential:

"Clinton checks with her communications director, Nick Merrill, about what’s happened in the past hour — she’s been exercising — and listens to the barrage of updates, nodding like a person whose job requires her to be up-to-date on what’s happening, even though it does not."
The act of being engaged in current events while also understanding these events and the relevant nuances is a low-level base criterion for president, or should be. And yet, by several accounts, Trump simply does not have this level of engagement, becoming impatient and irritable when sitting for more than a few minutes at a time, which foreign leaders are prepped on how to deal with.

It also speaks to a deep frustration of the 2016 election: many people are more moved by a white man's anger than a woman's quiet, nerdy competence. While Bernie and Donald could both channel anger, a female candidate and a person of color has to walk a fine line with emotion.

"But was she right that she couldn’t have expressed her anger in that debate? There are plenty of people who yearned for Clinton to get mad; during the campaign, an imagined litany of Clinton’s fury titled 'Let Me Remind You Fuckers Who I Am' went viral. 'Oh, I am [pissed],' she says. But as a woman in public life, 'you can’t be angry for yourself. You just can’t. You can be indignant, you can be annoyed, you can be frustrated, but you can’t be angry … I don’t think anger’s a strategy.'
You mean it’s not a strategy for you, I clarify. 'For me, yeah.' She pauses. 'But I don’t think it’s a good strategy for most people.'
But this was an election that was, in many ways, about anger. And Trump and Sanders capitalized on that.
'Yes.' Clinton nods. 'And I beat both of them.'”
And, going forward, I don't think it's a winning strategy for the Democrats to try to re-invent themselves to tap into, and center, white male anger, as it's being from time to time suggested.

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Recap: Supergirl 2.11 "The Martian Chronicles"

I suppose it's time to talk about Kara's love life.

In Season One recaps, I occasionally mentioned that I didn't think Kara and James had great chemistry. The love connection felt forced and one-sided, in that Kara seemed more into James than vice versa. When that romance plot was dropped in Season Two, it made sense.

With the introduction of Mon-El, it became clear that he would be the maintext love interest for Kara this season. (And, James seems happier with Winn anyway). I know there are some shipping wars raging in the fandom about "Karamel" that, quite honestly, remind me of the Lost Girl Bo/Dyson v. Bo/Lauren wars from several years ago (Meanwhile me: Team Valkubus).

I root for SuperCorp even though I know Kara/Lena will likely never be maintext. At the same time, although I'm not enchanted, I don't mind Mon-El. I suppose that's primarily because he's a white male character who doesn't suck the oxygen out of the room by having to be the big dog in every scene he's in. In Lost Girl, I couldn't stand Dyson at first because he was so alpha-possessive of Bo. And also, love triangle plots are the absolute worst. Once Bo/Lauren/Dyson figured their shit out, I came to like Dyson much more.

In Mon-El's case, it's somewhat refreshing that he seems to give zero fucks about performing alpha male. He has an overall reluctance to be a hero in the first place, instead choosing to be a bartender at Close Encounters serving hairspray or whatever to aliens.


That being said, this episode begins with Mon-El having confessed his crush on Kara. In response, Kara says she doesn't like him. I guess we'll see about that.

Speaking of Close Encounters, some White Martians are in town hunting M'gann to make her pay for being a traitor to their purported master race. J'onn brings her to the DEO for protection, but it turns out that a White Martian has shape-shifted into one of the DEO agents.

Also, in queer news, the "Alex's Ex" agent (Vasquez) has made a re-appearance. She's also, I believe, sporting a smart new haircut and I'm not sure how she feels about Detective Maggie Sawyer in general. Is the new look a clear indication to Alex that she's moved on and has resumed Internet dating? (Or whatever people do now, I've been married a long time).


Anyway, the DEO goes on lockdown so they can figure out which one of them is really the White Martian.  Hank concocts a Martian radar-test. Apparently, a flame can reveal White Martians:


Spoiler alert: the White Martian was masquerading as Winn. And also Alex. The Alex reveal was legit frightening.

Holy hell no
The DEO gang, primarily J'onn and M'gann, then defeat the White Martians. I'm not sure what happened to Vasquez in all the action, but I hope she's okay.

Afterward, M'gann says she's going back to Mars to try to find other White Martian resistance members. I understand her reasons, but I feel sad for J'onn that she's leaving.

This episode was sad, and weird.

Deep Thought of the Day: The Martian body-switch-esque plot reminded me of Lost Girl episode 2.9 "Original Skin" where a villain hid in Lauren's body and the gang all temporarily switched bodies with each other.  Fun times. I miss Lost Girl.

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

The Revolution Will Not Be Won By Twitter Jerks

Despite claiming the mantle of "populism," weird segments of the Twitter "left" - let's call them the Feisty Rose Brigade - contain an inherently distrustful and judgmental take on "the popular,"  whether it's the largest protest in US history or pop culture. That is, at least if Clinton supporters like, support, or reference these things.

See, for instance, the fantastical narrative one Enlightened Soul concocted about me over the weekend. Because I support Hillary Clinton, I apparently don't read (ever) and know nothing about politics. This is said not by someone on the right, but a purported person of the left.
Now, I'm sure grounds exist on which I may be fairly criticized, but "har har she doesn't read books" simply isn't one of them. I have about 10 years of book reviews on this blog alone and have averaged reading about 50-75 books per year for approximately the past 20 years, reading habits which likely put me in the 99th percentile for the US.

But, even if what this joker said about me were true, it shows that the Feisty Rose Brigade has zero interest in meeting the masses where they are in their political journey, a trait that dooms their cause into irrelevant elitism. Yes, reading and learning are, in general, social goods. However, this person is so steeped in the notion that they and their insular cabal of three friends are The Only True Leftists In Society that it's as though the Clinton left has been completely defined out of the group "real America," "the left," or "the masses."  

Imagine thinking that only the Feisty Rose Brigade reads books, and no one else in the US does. Imagine being one of the circle-jerky leftist men who so eagerly laps up such narratives about Clinton-supporting women, desperately "liking" such Twitter rants. (See also, the role that Cool Girls play in facilitating leftist misogyny).

You see, the real purpose of these Twitter "leftists" seems to mostly be to posture to one another on social media how much more enlightened they are than the ignorant proles they are purportedly in favor of liberating. If they can do so while maintaining white male supremacy, all the better.

Their commentary often reveals more about themselves, than their targets of harassment.

As a related example, more than one Internet "leftist" has (erroneously) claimed that I write about the, what they deem vacuous, Harry Potter series, because they see at a glance that I write about pop culture. That I write or care about pop culture, and don't also Feel The Bern or have a rose icon in my Twitter bio, proves to them that I am an unserious, frivolous person with zero knowledge about Serious Political Topics. I am, like, such a consumer! Hogwarts is so establishment, man!

Now, I've never actually written about Harry Potter (or read all the books- shame!), because at my age that series is simply not my touchstone for pop culture. In all likelihood, it is their touchstone for young adult pop culture because they themselves are young adults, young adults I might add who grew up with pathological Internet harassment culture that has largely been normalized. Alternatively, Harry Potter is a touchstone that a non-US agent might have as a profile of "US woman who writes about pop culture," if they wanted to shit-stir for ratfucking purposes.

My point here is this: if you see that someone's main form of "revolutionary leftist activism" is to be a jerk to "libs" and "feminists" and "Dems" on Twitter, I recommend blocking early and often. Boundaries are good, my friends.

Friday, May 26, 2017

Flashback Friday: Magic Mike

I can't explain it, but I watched Magic Mike on Netflix this week.

Okay, I can explain it. I wanted to determine if it was truly a bad movie or if it was only widely made fun of because it's something many women like (because women are hated, natch).

It turns out, I thought it was decent, and this is a lesbian talking. (Lesbian Addendum: since True Blood, my sexual orientation has been "lesbian + Joe Manganiello." Sookie Stackhouse really blew it there). ANYway, I'm more familiar with male strippers in the context of gay clubs, but we don't often see stories about women blatantly pining over men on the big screen like this. So, that's something. I wish it had been more queer, but I will always wish all the things are more queer.

Also, I have a new appreciation for Jenna Dewan Tatum's lip sync battle, which was modeled after one of her husband's scenes in the movie.  Never forget:


In conclusion, I would like to direct your attention to a recent Ruby Rose tweet, in which she's wearing a suit. You're welcome and good day.

Thursday, May 25, 2017

On Cool Girl Politics

On the nauseating topic of the mainstream media's intense interest in running humanizing profiles of Trump supporters, the profile of the person featured in this Cosmo article, about a former Bernie supporter who is now a Trump superfan, is a good example of two things:

(a) The disjointed way the mainstream media buries ledes about those on the left and right who were had by, or complicit in, the spread of Russian propaganda regarding the 2016 eletcion; and

(b) The confluence of how the Cool Girl Left meets the Cool Girl Right.

Today, I'm focusing on the latter, although this particular Cool Girl's ties to Russian propaganda outlet Sputnik, briefly referenced in the Cosmo article, are certainly worth delving into further as well.

The Cool Girl featured talks about how "punk rock" it is to support the (scare quotes mine) "counter-cultural" Trump and, before that, Bernie Sanders. It might seem odd to some that a person would go from Bernie to Donald, but it's not odd to me. The men have important policy distinctions to be sure, but they are also two sides of the same white-man-privileging-masquerading-as-anti-establishment-populism coin.

Now, when I talk about Cool Girl Politics and, specifically, where the Cool Girl Left meets the Cool Girl Right, what I'm talking about is the following.

First, on a general note, we see the adoption of antisocial "just in it for the lulz" Internet behavior. Being "politically correct," that is kind and sympathetic, is largely coded in Internet culture as feminine and weak. Here's the Trump/Bernie superfan opining on her Internet behavior:
“I'll definitely tweet things just to be a jerk and rile people up. I think it's funny. And I think that it's important to push the limits sometimes and force people to have uncomfortable conversations.”
Cool Girls make a point of not just rejecting "political correctness," but bragging about how they reject "political correctness." And, they certainly don't need no stinkin' trigger warnings!

Second, and more narrowly, the Cosmo narrative of this Trump/Bernie superfan is the story of a woman who - like many - gives man after man after man, and even the worst of men like Trump and M1lo, all the benefits of the doubt, while giving none to other women - especially Hillary Clinton.

We saw that disparate treatment repeatedly when Clinton faced Bernie Sanders in the Democratic primary and then, later, when she faced Trump in the general election. Even though Clinton was rated as more honest than both Trump and Sanders, people consistently believed that both men were more honest than her. It was simply taken as a given by many along the political spectrum that Clinton was History's Greatest Monster.

For instance, even though Trump has admitted on tape to grabbing women's genitals without their consent, the woman profiled in Cosmo is suspicious of the women who have accused Trump of sexual assault. She also carries a "Free Assange" tote bag and is now allied with a notorious anti-feminist man who has said "misogyny gets you laid."

White men are innocent until proven guilty in the court of public opinion. Women are guilty even if hearing after testimony after investigation proves they're innocent.

Three, and related, this disparate treatment of men and women is not examined or questioned.  Instead, we often see a very stupid, yet enduring, narrative in US political discourse that if a woman trashes another woman then it can't possibly be grounded in misogyny.

What I've noticed when I've been targeted by Political Cool Girls is that these women often serve as gateway misogynists. Their own intentional or unexamined misogyny gives cover to male misogynists on the left and right to cheer on the misogyny and engage in it themselves. After all, many people think, if a woman starts it, it's fair game!

Finally let's examine the contention that supporting unqualified and less-qualified men over a vastly more-qualified woman is "counter-cultural." Spoiler alert: It's not.

Since our nation's founding, we've had an unbroken line of (mostly white) male presidents. Refusing to seriously examine why that is, or acknowledge the role that misogyny continues to play in that, is less "punk rock" and more your standard, shitty Ted Nugent concert.

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Recap: Supergirl 2.10 "We Can Be Heroes"

In wanna-be superhero news, Mon-El has decided he wants to be a hero and James has decided he wants Kara to know that he's Guardian.

James and Mon-El are an interesting juxtaposition this season. In Mon-El's case, his superpowers are handed to him, by virtue of him being an alien, but he fluctuates between being a reluctant hero to having questionable motives for wanting to be one. When he does want to be a hero, he seems to be doing it mostly to impress Kara. At one point, James gives an assessment of Mon-El that I, as of now, agree with: "He's a fun guy, he's just not a hero." I guess we'll see.

James, meanwhile, has limited powers by virtue of him being human, but is eager to be a hero and his motives are more pure, fluctuating between him wanting to do good in the world and wanting to be more than just a sidekick. While it's still odd to me that nearly every recurring male character in Supergirl also has to be a hero or wanna-be hero, it will be interesting to see how their superhero journeys shake out. 

In villain of the week news, Livewire is back! Since we last saw her, she's been behind bars nursing thoughts of vengeance against her arch-nemesis Supergirl. Also, she's in a regular-person prison (because, um?), which she breaks out of:


Supergirl and Mon-El get into an early brawl with Livewire where Mon-El's hero traits are tested. Two items of note here. One, his hero "costume" consists of black street clothes and red-tinted sunglasses and I'm not sure why. As far as I know, he doesn't have Supergirl's laser or x-ray vision, so why the shades? And two, Supergirl gives him an order to protect the humans while she takes care of Livewire, but he immediately disobeys her, going after Livewire and leaving the humans unprotected.


Guardian swoops in, however, saves the humans, and ends up getting injured. In a Dramatic Moment, Supergirl removes the unconscious Guardian's helmet and discovers James Olsen underneath all that armor. She's 100% not happy about it. She tells him that if he keeps trying to be a hero, she will stop him, because he's going to get killed. James says Supergirl doesn't get to decide who gets to be a hero. Which, while I agree with that philosophical point, I do think James is squarely in vigilante territory and I'm not sure why the local cops or the DEO are rolling with that.


Anyhoo, the wannabe-superhero duo of Guardian and Mon-El (and their sidekick Winn) then go rogue and track down Livewire behind Supergirl's back. It turns out that Livewire had actually been abducted - she didn't escape - and a mad scientist was harnessing her power for evil. At one point, the scientist calls Livewire "such a nasty woman." LOLSOB.

At one point, Mon-El boasts to Livewire that he's "the other Superman" (as if), and Livewire responds, "Your cosplay sucks." LOL. The scientist guy then swiftly captures Guardian and Mon-El, and things suddenly take an Adventures in Babysitting turn, as they're now dependent on Supergirl to bail them out, which she does (natch).

M'gann has an interesting story arc this episode in the context of what constitutes heroism. J'onn does a mind-meld with her and we see her flashbacks. Although she is a White Martian, she had killed her own genocidal people on Mars and helped Green Martians escape. When J'onn sees her memories, he forgives her for being a White Martian and they become friends again.


I guess the overarching point of this episode was to question the concept of heroism itself. Specifically, what are its essential traits, if any? Supergirl seems to be the full package in that she has both the ability and the will, while Guardian and Mon-El arguably lack one or the other. And then, what is M'gann, anti-hero?

Deep Thought of the Week: Have I mentioned that I miss Cat Grant? Yes, I believe I have. Welp, I'll say it again. I miss Cat Grant. Specifically, the SuperCat balcony scenes. More specifically, the way that Cat looks at Supergirl during the balcony scenes. Never forget:
"To me, you are perfect"

Monday, May 22, 2017

Mashup Monday

Did I miss anything while I was gone?

Ha ha, just kidding. Of course I did.  Let's take it back to San Junipero for one more day then. Or, better yet, to this Taystee/Poussey Orange is the New Black Mirror mashup, which I'm 100% here for.


Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Blogging Update

Dear readers - I'm a bit busy at the moment with usual life things, but will resume blogging (and Supergirl recaps!) the week of 5/22.


Friday, May 12, 2017

The Fosters Femslash Friday

I can't ever entirely figure out if The Fosters is a kids show or a grown-ups show. Maybe it's both.

Either way, I'm primarily there for the Stef/Lena maintext. And yes, also for the representation of a non-traditional family in all its complexity,glory, and wonder.

I'm also here for this fan vid set to "She's Like the Wind." Let's be real, don't we all need more '80s sax in our lives? And also, a queer reboot of Dirty Dancing? Nobody puts Baby (starring Melissa Benoist, with KStew playing Johnny) in a corner.  Wait what?


Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Recap: Supergirl 2.9 "Supergirl Lives"

The episode begins with Supergirl chasing down a some villains who have a vaguely "Nerd Trio from Buffy" vibe. They get away from her (because ummm?), and The Guardian finishes them off.

Guardian
Okay, we've gotta talk about Guardian. I like James. But, maybe every dude in a female-led superhero show doesn't also have to be a superhero? Like, men can be regular guys - even in the midst of an amazing woman - and still retain their masculinity, right?

And secondly, when exactly does James train for any of this bad-assery?  What I like about Arrow, for instance, is that the guy is shown at least once every episode doing body weight training or doing archery while his bodyguard homoerotically observes. So, there we see how his practice translates to his abilities. But with James, all we get is that he has a black belt in an unspecified martial art. But, which art? When/where does he train? Who does he train with? How does this training translate to vigilantism?

In very important news, however, Alex and Maggie are officially girlfriends. #Sanvers is happening. There is "spending the night at each other's apartments." Let's .... just take a moment to appreciate Maggie Sawyer:


The mystery of the week is that Roulette is back and her minions have been kidnapping strapping young people. Kara tracks a lead to a wacky scientist's lab, where young people are being recruited, supposedly, for clinical research.  Kara and Mon-El pose as research subjects, the wacky scientist turns into a lizard-being, and Kara and Mon-El are transported through a stargate to a world where their powers don't work. Whew!


With Kara missing, Alex has a mini-freakout. She tells Maggie that their relationship is a mistake, because her brief moment of happiness distracted her and led to Kara going missing.  Nononononono.

Back through the stargate, it turns out that this planet is Slaver's Moon. With Roulette's fight club having been shut down, she has apparently been kidnapping young humans and trafficking them to aliens.

Roulette
Now, regarding season two arch-villains, I'm not sure how or if Roulette and Cadmus are related or who the ultimate Big Bad is. I'm thinking it's Cadmus, but who knows, maybe it's Roulette. Or Snapper Carr. Yeah, let's go with Snapper Carr.

Anyway, Alex and the DEO go through the stargate and rescue Kara, Mon-El, and the humans. Alex shows off some smooth fighting moves, which makes sense, because we've actually seen her training before.

To end, Alex apologizes to Maggie and they make up. And then make out. Probs. (Also, Maggie has figured out that Kara is Supergirl. "The glasses don't help." LOL) AND, Mon-El goes over to Kara's and there is awkward flirting. Mon-El says he wants to be a superhero. So, I guess he's going to be Supergirl's apprentice or whatever. Ho-hum where is Lena, anyway?


Deep Thought of the Week: Okay, today's recap was maybe a little skimpy. Really, I'm just excited to have a maintext F/F relationship to root for again on TV.  Please enjoy this episode 2x9-themed Sanvers fan vid.

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Complicit NYT Scolds Clinton and Supporters To Get Over It

Today, over at Shakesville, I've written about a recent admonishment The New York Times Editorial Board gave to Hillary Clinton and her supporters to stop talking about the election so the nation can purportedly heal.

I place this remarkable scold into a larger context of how the newspaper of record was complicit, along with other mainstream media publications, in framing Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump as equally-bad candidates.

Check it out!

Friday, May 5, 2017

Best Friend Friday

Did you know that Romy and Michelle's High School Reunion came out 20 years ago?

I know! I can't believe it either!

In honor, I recently gave the film a re-watch and made my spouse watch it, finally, for the first time ever.  Now, I've decided that we're maybe supposed to think of Romy and Michelle as "dim-witted," as the IMBD summary describes them. But, the movie's deeper message is that most, if not all of us, are actually smart about things that many other people are not, even if society doesn't define our smart things as smart.

For Romy and Michelle, their thing is fashion.

The larger takeaway is this:

If you're not a businesswoman, don't go for some lackluster businesswomen's special when you could instead be dancing to Cyndi Lauper in fab outfits whilst having mild threeway vibes with a millionaire and your BFF.


Thursday, May 4, 2017

Deep Thought on The Handmaid's Tale

I will write a serious post about this show at some point, but for now I just want to observe that Alexis Bledel is a more believable lesbian in The Handmaid's Tale than she was in Jenny's Wedding.
 



Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Recap: Supergirl 2.8 "Medusa"

It's a Jolly Thanksgiving in the Super-verse.

Kara is hosting the whole gang for the holiday while both Alex and James contemplate coming out during dinner, as a lesbian and a vigilante, respectively. More importantly, and just because I love sneaky background moments in film and TV, at one point Alex surreptitiously snags some Wild Turkey from the freezer while Kara and her mom are talking and then tip-toes away like a cartoon character.

Liquid "coming out" courage?
However, Alex and James don't get the chance to come out. On the other hand, it seems that Kara and Mon-El have mutual crushes, because they keep making googly eyes at each other.

Kara then goes on an undercover DEO assignment to interview Lena for a "puff piece," while secretly trying to gather intel on Lena's evil mom. Sadly, the interview is too short for any meaningful flirting to occur and Kara isn't able to get much info. When Kara leaves, Lena knows something is up, so she calls her evil mom. Hmmm.

In villain news, Cadmus launches a terror attack at Close Encounters by releasing a gas that kills only aliens. Mon-El is exposed to the gas and gets sick. From this, Supergirl figures out (somehow?) that Cadmus used her blood to get into the Fortress of Solitude. She flies to Greenland or Antarctica or wherever and her hologram dad tells her that he created a bio-weapon called Medusa to be used against non-Kryptonian aliens. Supergirl does not approve.


Kara's mom stays in town to help study the virus. While she and Alex are working in the lab together, Alex ends up coming out to her, and it goes about as well as such things can go. It's very non-dramatic, which is nice.

Alex and her mom also deduce that L Corp has developed an isotope that could spread the Medusa virus throughout the city. Supergirl zooms off to L Corp, where she encounters Cyborg Superman (aka - original evil Hank). There is a moment in the fight where Supergirl heroically saves Lena by jumping in front of a beam that Cyborg throws her way. (YES now kiss!)


But then, ALERT, we have a TV Lesbian In Peril moment. I repeat, we have a TV Lesbian in Peril: The police show up with Maggie leading the charge. Cyborg shoots a laser at her and she falls down. Back at the DEO, Alex stitches her up. Cancel Alert. Maggie seems to be okay. Tragic Lesbian Trope averted. But, I have my eyes on you, Supergirl.

At the L Word, I mean L Corp, Supergirl informs Lena that her mom is the head of Cadmus. Lena gets upset and says she doesn't believe it. Supergirl says it's true, but that it doesn't make Lena evil. But then, the plot thickens. When Lena later confronts her mom, Lena gives her mom the isotope needed to unleash the Medusa virus. What NO! Supergirl believed in you, Lena! She BELIEVED IN YOU!

Lena and her mom then unleash a missile that contains the virus. But, unbeknownst to her mom, Lena switched isotopes. So, the virus is ineffective. AND, she called the police on her mom.Oh good. I'm glad Supergirl won't be disappointed in Lena.


While all of that was going on, apparently Alex's mom Eliza had been working to create an antidote to the virus, thus saving Mon-El's life. She also apparently created a cure that stops J'onn from turning into a White Martian. All of that happened in about 30 minutes because science.  Relatedly, I have no idea why Dr. Eliza Danvers is not the head of science at the DEO. This woman works miracles.


FINALLY, Maggie goes to Alex's place and confesses that she likes Alex and says that life is short so we should "kiss the girls that we want to kiss." And so then they kiss and my work here is done, goodbye.


Deep Thought of the Week: The episode ends by teasing the four-way Supergirl crossover with Flash, Arrow, and Legends of Tomorrow. I'm not typically all that excited about DC-verse male-led/dominated superhero shows. In my opinion, male-led Marvel TV/film like Luke Cage and X-Men are more interesting, often because they are about heroes who seem more subversive, reluctant, or outcast than the alpha-hero prototype.

However, I recently started Arrow. I'm reserving judgment about it until I watch a few more episodes. But, do any of you watch these other shows. Thoughts?

Tuesday, May 2, 2017

Trump Supporters Still Chant "Lock Her Up"

In case you were wondering if some Trump supporters are still deplorable bigots, a crowd of 7,000 resumed their fave chant, about a woman who no longer holds public office, at a Donald Trump rally over the weekend.

Oh, and they still want their fucking wall, even though Trump's proposed budget plan would cut domestic spending - including medical research that they would ostensibly benefit from - in order to pay for it.

Via the Washington Post:
"They’ve been watching Fox News and reading Facebook, and they’ve concluded that the Washington machine is blocking him at every turn. They blame the conservative Republicans, and they blame the Democrats, and they blame the news media, and they blame, even now, Hillary Clinton.

'Lock her up!' the crowd chanted spontaneously, again and again. They were families and young couples and old folks, lifelong Republicans and people who’d never voted for a Republican before, an almost entirely white audience, and they danced to Trump’s trademark soundtrack of ’60s and ’70s pop hits, and they chanted 'Build that wall.'"
Here is my summary of Donald Trump's entire term: He will pass the buck for every loss and take credit for every win. His fans will believe it all because he frames anything counter to that narrative as "fake news."

Monday, May 1, 2017

Praise Lavished on Powerful, Incompetent Man's "Brain Dumps"

Today, over at Shakesville, I wrote about some establishment press responses to Trump's first 100 days:
"100 days in office and Donald Trump's second biggest accomplishment appears to be that the establishment press continually grades him on the lowest imaginable curve. (If you're wondering what the single biggest accomplishment is, I contend it's that we haven't yet endured nuclear holocaust under his watch).

Journalists with some of the largest media platforms can rightly find so little to praise about his foray into "being a President" that they've taken to fawning over his Twitter usage. Yes, it was only mere months ago that Donald's Twitter habit used to be widely recognized as a trait that shed light on his unsuitable, disqualifying temperament. But my oh my, it's incredible what gets legitimized in the US when a rich white man is inaugurated."
 Read it all, over at Shakesville.

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Recap: Supergirl 2.7 "The Darkest Places"

At the beginning of this episode, we see the superhero gang hanging out at Close Encounters. They're drinking some beers and speculating about The Guardian. Kara doesn't know that James is The Guardian and she's telling him how she doesn't trust vigilantes. Here I feel like anyone attuned to James' facial expressions for "defensiveness" would start to become suspicious, but I guess this is why things between James and Kara didn't work out.

Speaking of things not working out, That Maggie Person then shows up and wants to know why Alex has been avoiding her, as if it's not totally obvious. Sigh. Keep your head up, Danvers.

In Hank news, ever since he received a transfusion from M'gann, he's been having visions of his family and it clearly upsets him. Later, Supergirl finds him doing Tai-Chi at the DEO and it all has a very "Buffy walking in on Angel doing Tai-Chi to heal from trauma" vibe to it and, hmmm, that reminds me, I bet some people ship Kara and Hank.


Mon-El, meanwhile, has been kidnapped by Cadmus. Shrug. (No, I'm KIDDING. I think Mon-El is okay. For now.) Supergirl goes to Cadmus to rescue him and she encounters the real Hank Henshaw, who is now apparently "Cyborg Superman." Supergirl ends up captured and, oh hey how convenient, she also lands in a cell right next to Mon-El, where they can chat and plot their escape together!

On the dumbass villain scale, villains who put the protagonists in adjoining cells rank right next to villains who deliver, by monologue, the entirety of their evil schemes whilst fighting.

In vigilante news, there's a fake Guardian in town, one who kills people. So, Maggie issues an arrest warrant for The Guardian. Uh-oh. As a result, Winn tells Alex that she needs to get Maggie to back off. That makes Alex suspicious. Alex tells Winn that she knows six ways to get him to talk, using just her index finger. While this sounds not unpleasant (sorrynotsorry), Winn quickly confesses that James is The Guardian.


Alex then tells Maggie to leave The Guardian alone and she lets Maggie know that, actually, they can't be just "friends."

Winn is able to track down the fake Guardian. So, the James Guardian finds him and confronts him. Just as he's kicked fake Guardian's ass, Maggie happens to swing by and she sees that the James Guardian and the fake Guardian are two different people. Whew!

Back at the Cadmus ranch, Lena's villain mom asks who Supergirl is to her daughter. It's like she suspects they might be secret lovers (which they are, obvs). She then puts a helmet on Supergirl that captures and depletes her power and Cadmus shoot Mon-El with lead bullets, which he's allergic to.


However, before anything worse can happen, Jeremiah helps Supergirl and Mon-El escape. He also, weirdly, stays behind at Cadmus for some reason. I guess he works there or has been Stokholmed or something.

On the Martian front, it turns out M'gann is a White Martian! It seems she's one with a conscience, however, but J'onn is still angry. Not that you can blame him. And, because M'gann gave him her blood, J'onn is now turning into a White Martian himself. Like Saul Tigh, it dawns on him that he's the type of being that he has long hated and sought vengeance against.

To end, the gang is at Kara's apartment, eating exactly one bite of potstickers each, when Maggie stops by. She tells Alex that she hopes they can be friends, because she doesn't want to imagine her life without Alex in it. Alex agrees. And I'm glad, because if Alex had a clue she'd know that Maggie's little "you've become really important to me" speech is not one that one typically gives to people one doesn't have a crush on. But, I get it. Lesbian friendships can be complicated. Sanvers, I'm rooting for them!


Deep Thought of the Week: On the topic of The Guardian and vigilantes, what makes Supergirl not a vigilante? Is it that she's acting under the auspices of the DEO? But, if the DEO is a secret government agency, how does the populace know she's not a rogue alien vigiliante? Or, is she not a vigilante because she doesn't (typically) kill?

Friday, April 21, 2017

First Crush Friday

Elisabeth Shue was mine, circa her days in Karate Kid and Adventures in Babysitting

Now, if you're in your early 20s or younger, you might have no idea why Shue is dressed like a mom throughout the entire movie when she's supposed to be a teenager, complete with a long camel-colored felt coat with a brooch and shoulder pads. All I can say is that this is simply how many people dressed in the '80s SO BACK OFF.

Here she is, singing "Babysitting Blues."


Thursday, April 20, 2017

Bernie's Bad Day

One of the most important tasks Democrats can accomplish between now and 2020 is rebutting the myth that Bernie Sanders is the one true progressive, indeed the ultimate arbiter as to what constitutes progressivism, in US politics.

This is a man who talked a big game after Trump's electoral college victory about being Trump's "worst nightmare" should Donald go after minorities. And yet, here we are, a mere few months later, and Bernie is criss-crossing the country holding rallies gaslighting minorities about the existence of bigotry among Trump's supporters.

This is also a man who gives the millions of people who voted for a bigoted sexual predator all the benefits of the doubt about their un-bigotedness, but who couldn't be bothered to learn about, or publicly support, a Democratic candidate in an important Georgia election this week.

This is a man who, however, can find it himself to support a male politician who would force women to view mandatory ultrasounds before having an abortion.

This is a man who sees a "silver lining" to the horrors that Trump is inflicting on the world, in that, hey, at least "millions of people are getting involved in politics to fight back." This view was also uttered before the election by Susan Sarandon, who is a big Bernie supporter and a big Hollywood star. When non-"Berniecrat" politicians are supported by Hollywood stars, however, it is explained to us that this is proof that they are elite and out of touch with Ordinary (White) (Male) People, as one commentator at The Guardian recently suggesed.

To put it quite bluntly, this is a man, as one Twitter user put it, whose "greatest accomplishment in life will be sabotaging a woman's chance to be president."

Yes, there is plenty of blame to go around, but Bernie Sanders' role in Trump's electoral college win cannot and should not be understated. Misogynistic double standards and white male privilege did a lot of fucking work for this guy in the Democratic Primary and we cannot and should not cede the label "progressive" to him, nor to those Internet Warriors who aggressively harass anyone who doesn't "feel the Bern."

The lesson, as always, is this: Never mistake a self-styled, white-man-centred leftist revolution for a feminist, anti-racist one.

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Recap: Supergirl 2.6 "Changing"

So, here we are at Close Encounters gay-lien bar. Mon-El is getting Kara drunk, apparently for the first time ever, while Maggie is convincing Alex to embrace her newfound gayness and come out to her family. Well well, look at the Danvers Sisters rebelling.

Later, Alex takes Maggie's advice and comes out to Kara. Alex explains that she has feelings ("yeah, those feelings") for Maggie and that she thinks she's been pushing down similar feelings for a long time.


Kara seems a little confused throughout the whole conversation, which seems a little odd. Has she truly never wondered why her big sis hasn't dated much? Here I theorize that her not-100%-enthusiastic response to Alex coming out to he is mostly due to her own dawning realization that she has feelings for Lena. Yeah, those feelings.

Anyway, the villain of the week is some sort of alien-virus-slug that has been trapped in Antarctic ice for thousands of years (did this happen on X-Files once?). Some scientists were studying it, it infected one of them, and the scientist is now roaming around National City. He also starts talking about himself in the plural first person, like Gollum, and sucks people's life forces from them like a succubus.

In Important Gay News, Alex confronts Kara for acting weird about the whole coming-out thing.  Which is legit. Kara was acting weird when Alex came out to her. Kara insists she's "so okay with it." But is she though? (Come on, don't break my heart, Supergirl!) Alas:
Kara: I think I owe you an apology.
Alex: For what?
Kara: For not creating an environment where you could talk about this with me.
*cheers*

Straight people take note. This is a really thoughtful way to react if someone comes out to you "late" in your relationship. You likely have no idea, straight people, as to how many queers in your life center heterosexual comfort/discomfort constantly. Instead of centering your own comfort/discomfort when someone else comes out to you, here is a good way to center their experience: consider that they have maybe not felt safe to come out to you until this moment. And then consider why that might be.

In Mon-El news, he's apparently taken a new job beating up aliens who owe debt. He also says he has no innate desire to use his powers to help people. Kara strongly disapproves. Here is her disapproving face:


James, meanwhile, is busting his ass trying to be a superhero even though he doesn't have superpowers. Go figure.

J'onn and Supergirl then track down the alien-virus-succubus thingy, but it drains both of them and then mutates into this thing that looks like an extra-creepy version of one of The Gentlemen from Buffy:


Supergirl heals after some time under the heat lamp, but J'onn apparently needs a blood transfusion from M'gann.  M'gann is hesitant to help, for some reason, and before giving J'onn her blood says, "Forgive me." Hmmm.


With both Supergirl and J'onn out of commission, James' boyfriend Winn finishes James' superhero outfit. National City needs a hero right now, so James steps up, as ..... The Guardian.  Oh, Mon-El decides to help too. A little bit. Before they can both get themselves killed by the alien-virus-succubus thingy, Supergirl flies to the scene of the battle with some plutonium. Great Scott! I guess she can just take it from a power plant or something and nothing bad will happen there. Anyway, the bad guy drains the plutonium and explodes.

To end, Alex goes to Close Encouters, and this close encounter happens:


*angel choir singing*

HOWEVER, it gets awkward fast. Sadly.

That Maggie Person says that she and Alex are at really different places and she doesn't want to date someone who is "fresh off the boat." Which, I've never heard being newly-gay phrased that way before and I've been gay a long time, but hey, now I'm imagining Alex disembarking a boat full of heteros and arriving at Dinah Shore weekend, where she joins all my favorite femslash pairings.

*angel choir singing again*

Sorry. The point here is, poor Alex.  She put herself out there multiple times this episode and it wasn't smooth sailing. At the same time, you can't win them all. Give Maggie space. In fact, my advice to Alex is this: go home, pour yourself some wine, and watch some L Word episodes. There are always other boats in the sea. Scully. Tamsin. Melinda May....



Deep Thought of the Week: Lena wasn't in this episode. I hope that is rectified next week.

Friday, April 14, 2017

Femslash Food Fight Friday

A few items of note.

When searching for Fried Green Tomatoes Ruth/Idgie fan videos (or really, any femslash video in general) why is it that we so often encounter that YouTube commenter who feels compelled to piss all over the LGBT pride parade? They love to gaslight people, for instance, about the romantic nature of Ruth and Idgie's relationship, or any femslash pairing that people ship.


"Why do you people have to make everything sexual?" they say, after they have somehow arrived themselves at search results for "Ruth and Idgie fan videos," which we all know is a 100% heterosexual activity.

Alas, after Trump gets us all nuked, a possibility that seems likelier and likelier every passing day, I'm convinced that all that will be left in the world are Twinkies, cockroaches, one last holler of "but her emailllllls," and some prepper in a bunker still insisting that Ruth and Idgie - like Xena and Gabrielle - are good friends but definitely-not-lovers.

Now yes yes, it's true, I often do read subtext into film and TV. But, to be fair, I'm usually just following subtextual breadcumbs left by producers and writers. And, in this particular case, Ruth and Idgie's relationship actually was overtly romantic in the novel as written by Fannie Flagg (no relation).  It was the film that hid the romance in subtext, obscuring from the oblivious, un-discerning hetero gaze.

Two, speaking of subtext, isn't a food fight sometimes so much more than a food fight?

Three, I'm not sure why this fan video below is set to a French version of "Total Eclipse of the Heart," but I'm here for it.



I'm suddenly craving baked goods. Totinos anyone?

Thursday, April 13, 2017

NYT "Q&A" on Abortion and Democrats

Want to know what's perfect for the year 2017?

Two men posting a "Q&A" session at The New York Times about "How Democrats Can Stop Being Perceived as the Abortion Party," in which they highlighted and responded to reader comments on this topic.

AND

Out of 2,500 reader comments from which to choose, these men chose to highlight this contribution to the discourse first:


Hillary Clinton "lost because her campaign was horrible." Nevermind that she received more than votes than any white man in the history of the United States. Let's give this rando a platform, so we can likewise give two dudes the opportunity to respond, about abortion, and then proceed to dominate and frame a fauxbective conversation about a topic that disproportionately impacts women's bodily autonomy.

It is the year 2017.

Women's reproductive autonomy is still up for debate. Many times, women don't even get to participate as thought leaders in the debate on the world's biggest platforms. There's your liberal "fake news" media for ya.

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Recap: Supergirl 2.5 "Crossfire"

So, this episode begins with Kara serving as Mon-El's alien mentor. She and Winn have gotten him a fake ID and a job CatCo. Sort of assuming he'll be a superhero eventually, she also helps him come up with his "regular human identity." This identity is sort of like a male version of herself:


Mon-El makes questionable moral choices whilst at work, eating red vines while a woman does his work for him. Later, he hooks up with this woman in a CatCo closet. I think this is supposed to show how he's not used to human customs, but it seems pretty human-like behavior to me. /shrug

Meanwhile, Alex and Maggie hang out at the alien/gay bar. In my head, this bar is named Close Encounters, although it's possible it has an actual canon name. More importantly, Maggie lets the cat out of the bag that her girlfriend has broken up with her. Alex subsequently does not do a good job of hiding her delight about that.

Later, at the DEO, Alex and Winn are talking, but she's obviously distracted. Winn asks what's up and Alex tells him that Maggie's girlfriend has broken up with her. Then, this happens: 
Winn: I don't know, I try to stay out of other people's relationships. 
Alex: Mm-hmm, like you stayed out of Kara's? 
Winn: Okay, now that was different. I was into Kara. It's not like you're into this Maggie person.
Alex: ..... 
Mmm, Maggie
Ahem, "that Maggie person." How dare you, Winn!

This week's big bad is a group of bank robbers. Cadmus has secretly given them some alien weapons, so they rob a bank and attack Supergirl. Cadmus then puts out an anti-alien ad, their point being that alien technology is dangerous because, seeeee, it can fall into the wrong hands.

Lena then pays Kara a surprise visit at CatCo. Her purpose is to invite Kara to a gala, because Kara is supposedly her only friend in National City. I have two SuperCorp observations here: (1) Mon-El gets himself an invite to the gala as well, and Kara seems annoyed about that, and (2) Kara continues to act flustered/flirty around Lena.

Lena also invites Supergirl to this very same gala to protect them all from the bank robber gang! Uh-oh, what is a superhero-with-a-secret-identity to do? Should she yet Lena in on her little secret? (yesyesyeyesyesyes)


The Alex/Maggie saga continues when Alex somewhat-obliviously tells Maggie-the-newly-single-lesbian that it would be nice if they could keep each other company that night. Maggie reads it as an offer for a romantic interlude, and she says she didn't realize that Alex was "into girls." Alex quickly says she's not, but also seems confused in general by the turn the conversation has taken. Oh dear. Somebody come along and help poor Alex ease into feeling really excited about a woman for the first time. A mentor, maybe? Yes, that's it. She needs a queer mentor.

Next, in character development news, we turn to James. Now, I've been wondering what's up with James this season, other than him getting a promotion and a Dear John letter from Kara. Well, in this episode, we learn that he wants to be a superhero too. Oh. Well, okay then.

He apparently has a black belt in an unspecified martial art and he tries to get Winn to be his sidekick. Dare I say that I don't see this ending well?


Operation Doubtfire then commences, with Kara and Supergirl both attending the same gala. Kara arrives first and says hi to Lena. Kara then leaves the scene and, seconds later, Supergirl "arrives" and says hi. Golly, I hope no one starts choking on cayenne pepper.

*Brief Subtextual Interlude Alert* 

You know the "Alex's Ex" DEO Agent? I like to think of this gala saxophone player as her ex:


Moving along. The bank robber gang shows up to the gala and they start shooting their alien guns at Supergirl. However, Lena came prepared. She secretly has a machine that will absorb the alien weaponry hidden at the gala, and it works. So, the bad guys get arrested.

In conclusion, Winn agrees to help James be a superhero. Kara also accepts that the best way to mentor Mon-El is to let him be who he is, rather than how she wants him to be. He is not, it turns out, a clone of Kara's. *shrug* I'm just here for the flying and gay stuff. *looks around nervously* He he, just kidding.

And FINALLY, Alex meets Maggie at Close Encounters and *prepare yourselves* comes out to her. It's actually a really nice scene and realistic as to how sometimes it doesn't "click" for some people, that they're gay, until later in life.

Also, Lena's mom is the head of Cadmus. BYEEEE!


Deep Thought of the Week: Wasn't Mrs. Doubtfire a pretty fucked-up movie if you think about it?