How Hard Could It Be?

The children stayed with my brother and sister last night. So, the Sound Guy and I finally got to watch the final episode of GoT. I was left wondering whether Kit Harrington had to have butt-cheek-make-up, and whether Cersei’s shaman-dude was going to figure out a way to control the White Walkers.

I was also left wondering why they were called White Walkers.

I mentioned to the Sound Guy that the scene where Theon gets kneed in the crotch had to have been written by a man because men think that the only tender thing down there is their testicles. Having come off a bike and hit the cross bar, having had toddlers lash out at a dream-world villain and kick me there, and having given birth and felt like it was splitting in half, I can assure you that the pubic bone is pretty fucking sensitive and if Theon got kneed there, repeatedly, and the scene were written by a woman, he would certainly have collapsed in a heap on the sand and his sister would need to rescue herself. Which she seems entirely capable of doing.

I have been on a mission to watch movies and television series made by, and read books written by, people other than white middle class men. It is a mission. I have watched Atlanta, Dear White People, The Get Down, Fruitvale Station, The Fence, and a few more I’m struggling to remember. I’d like to watch many more. I’ve read Roxane Gay’s books, Hisham Matar’s autobiography, blog posts by Lana Lopesi, and stories by local authors Tina Makareti, Apirana Taylor and Witi Ihimaera. I feel like this is kind of a flaccid list. It’s not complete. I don’t think I deserve a pat on the back. Please, no. I’m just giving you an idea of what I’ve been up to. Most recently I’ve been peppering my “likes” all over the face book page We Are Beneficiaries because fuck me those voices need to be heard, and be seen to be heard, and will somebody give them a microphone and a PA and let them play at the fucking inauguration along side Fat Freddy’s.

I’m doing this for a few reasons. I’d like to inform my world view by broadening the “type” of people who are contributing to it. I’d like to support people who are doing things that challenge the status quo. I’d like to, by some internet magic, contribute my one “watch”, “like”, or “download” to their ratings, and be the tipping point in favour of more from them.

I have really enjoyed it. I’ve enjoyed being confronted with some bull shit things I do, and enjoyed seeing things from another perspective – one that, in my privilege, I’ve never thought about.

So, I was talking to the Sound Guy, post GoT (post Kit Harrington’s butt cheek) about how hard it is to find things to watch that aren’t written, directed and scripted by white middle class men. All three. The trifecta. And sure, there are producers and starring roles – and often they’re white middle class men too – but for some reason – maybe because they’re the puppeteers, the ones walking us through their world – I focused on the behind-the-scenes three-way. And these words came out of my mouth:

Maybe, for the next year, I only watch or read things where only one of those roles is a white middle class man. He can be either the writer, the director or the script-writer, but he can’t be all three. How hard could it be?

Well, let’s see.

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