Tag Archives: Glenn

For Your Consideration: The Happiness and Wellbeing of Minority Characters

This is short [and quite late] even as “For Your Consideration” posts go. While past instances have been particularly research heavy, this installment really leans into the gist of those three words. I’m here to present all of you nice people with a little something to ruminate on, and this time I don’t even have a particular stance on it myself.

Jeremy Whitley is a comic book writer that Marvel appears to be actively grooming, and who I first read due to his penning one of a handful of short stories in the Secret Wars: Secret Love one-shot [a truly excellent Danny/Misty Knight romance].

Secret Wars: Secret Love – “Misty and Danny Forever”. Written by Jeremy Whitley, illustrated by Gurihiru.

Since then he’s also written a tie-in issue of Champions, and is currently on the ongoing The Unstoppable Wasp as well as responsible for another upcoming event one-shot [this time for the summer’s Secret Empire]. Suffice to say, Whitley is swiftly making a name for himself at one of the two largest publishers in the industry.

What he was once primarily known for, and which I’m positive he’s very proud of, is Princeless. Starting back in 2012, the all-ages series has released six volumes and been nominated for two Eisner awards. What’s particularly notable is how he has in part been writing the book for his daughter, with the following interview answer explaining a lot about the title hero’s character design:

“My daughter is black and while I encourage her to look for role models of all colors, girls need to be able to see girls that are like themselves in media. They need it even more when it comes to seeing them portrayed with strength. And, unfortunately, I think that’s sort of a symptom of this exclusionary tendency in the self-professed nerd culture circles. I would love nothing more than to change that culture, but barring that, I’ll help create another one.”

With that in mind it should be of no surprise whatsoever that Whitley is very concerned about diversity and representation in media, and has made a concerted effort to include that in all of his books.

Now to get to the actual meat of this post, I began following him on tumblr not too long ago where he’s very active in engaging with his fans. It was a couple of weeks back that I came across the following exchange between Whitley and two such comic readers:

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John Cho is Hot on Selfie, and Why It Matters

Roughly six years ago I sat in a guest house in London, England, and complained to a Korean friend about not being attractive. It’s funny seeing it typed out now, and it wasn’t so starkly apparent at the time, but that’s exactly what I was worried about. We were studying abroad with a group of mostly White classmates from a predominantly White liberal arts college, and as an eighteen-year-old I had dating on the mind. That, and the beginnings of the idea that things might not be so easy for me given the colour of my skin.

And unlike John Cho and his suit, my skin does not peel away to reveal more equally-good-looking skin underneath.

My primary source was media and pop culture, and how interracial relationships weren’t showcased much, if at all [not much has changed, 2009!]. I suggested that this might create a life-imitating-art situation, where young non-hyphenated-American women might not be as open to the idea of getting together with an Asian guy due to never seeing it on screens small or large. He brought up that he’d had no problems in the past [being musical, and with that bone structure?], as well as the more damning evidence that neither had I. With that I left the topic of conversation alone, not entirely convinced or at peace with the whole thing.

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Shame Day: Porn and Racism

Let’s be honest, porn is not the highest art form to begin with. That being said, it’s 2013, people. It is the 21st century and I expect better from all of us, even those in San Fernando Valley [lovingly dubbed “Porn Valley” by those in the industry].

glenntwdNow, I’m going to assume that most of you are familiar with AMC’s The Walking Dead [I’d be surprised if you weren’t, really]. If not, what you need to know is that it features among its core cast Glenn, who is played by Korean-American Steven Yeun]. A cast member of the original comic book series, Glenn makes his entrance by saving Rick, the protagonist of the series, and goes on to be an all-around successful human being [which, in a zombie apocalypse, equates to being a badass]. So that’s what you have to know about that.

What you also have to know, if you weren’t aware, is that porn studios churn out parodies like nobody’s business. They’ve parodied everything from beloved childhood cartoons [The Flintstones: A XXX Parody] to a 1976 DC/Marvel comic books crossover event [Superman vs Spider-Man XXX: An Axel Braun Parody]; nothing is sacred. It should come as no surprise, then, when they decided to take a stab at adapting AMC’s The Walking Dead [if you watch it, you’d know why I have to write it out like that].

Porn star Danny Wylde was cast to play Glenn in the as-of-yet untitled film. In it, he will be appearing as follows:

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A Look at The Walking Dead‘s Theodore Douglas

Season 2 of AMC’s The Walking Dead wrapped up this past Sunday, kind of a big deal when you take into consideration the fact that the show was pulling in roughly 10 million viewers every time it aired. There are blogs all over the place discussing the big reveal, so feel free to head over there if you’re wondering what all the fuss is about. This post is meant to take a good hard look at character Theodore “T-Dog” Douglas.

AMC’s The Walking Dead is based on an immensely well-received comic book series of the same name written by Robert Kirkman. While it has, for the most part, stuck with the comics’ general plot progression, there have been a large amount of changes made. The addition of T-Dog as a member of the group in the first season was one of them.

As this season has progressed the internet has taken a lot of interest in T-Dog, for the most part discussing how little a role he actually has to play in the show. The following are his biggest moments listed in chronological order:

S1E1, Guts: T-Dog is one of the group members. He is savagely beaten by a racist among them and is almost killed.  The character who beat him is handcuffed to a roof as punishment. Later, when sent to free him, T-Dog drops the keys down a drain.

S2E1, What Lies Ahead: The survivors are scavenging an abandoned
highway for supplies. T-Dog doesn’t hear Rick, their leader, tell everyone to hide under cars due to zombies. He cuts his arm open on a car door. His life is saved when another survivor covers him with a dead zombie.

S2E2, Bloodletting: T-Dog is upset because the group is leaving him behind with an old man. He thinks it is because he is black. It turns out that he has blood poisoning and is weak and might die.

S2E4, Cherokee Rose: T-Dog almost drinks water from a well that had a big fat zombie in it.

S2E6, Secrets: They’re at a farm, and one of the farmer’s kids turns his pistol sideways during shooting practice. T-Dog tells him not to “give [him] any of that gangster sh-t.”

S2E12, Better Angels: T-dog sees that a prisoner has escaped and exclaims “Aw hell no!”

S2E13, Beside the Dying Fire: Zombies attack the farm and everyone scatters. T-Dog is driving himself and two others to the coast. One of them, Rick’s wife, tells him to turn around or she’ll jump out of the truck. He does so, performing a particularly ugly U-turn.

As the second season progressed, the conversation about T-Dog and what he has to do with anything grew immensely. In the last few episodes many were wondering if he was ever going to get past more than one or two lines per episode. Some have theorized [and by some I mean me] that he shares the same affliction as Eddie Murphy’s character in the universally panned A Thousand Words.

Thankfully, an interview with showrunner Glen Mazzara hopes to answer all of your questions about this enigma of a man. Entertainment Weekly asked if we would be seeing more of T-Dog next season, and the answer was as follows:

There is a plan for T-Dog. Given all of the things that I had to focus on to develop the show in a way that I felt was best, I will say that T-Dog got short shrift. We took care of business, and now we can delve into [SPOILERS] and T-Dog and all these other characters. T-Dog fans will be happy. We’re no longer interested in having a character in the background only saying one line per episode. We’re done with that. But again, we only had so much real estate, and it was very important for me to tell Rick’s story.

Which is great, really, except that I don’t see him having much more to offer the show. As far as what his role is it’s difficult to look any further than token black character. Glenn, a Korean-American character, was present in the comics and as a result has a pretty well-defined personality and storyline. In other words, Glenn has a foundation that extends beyond diversity for diversity’s sake. At this point in the series, T-Dog is actually the only character [save for a girl whose name was changed] not found in the original comics, and this really stands out.

It’s great that Mazzara was able to address, in a straightforward manner, that they did have a character who was “only saying one line per episode.” What remains to be seen is whether or not the writers for The Walking Dead can add any sort of complexity to T-Dog in this upcoming season. It’s been amusing watching and waiting to see if he does, well, anything, but while that may be enjoyable it doesn’t make it good television.