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Reading through the YJ tag.
And it seems like everyone is glossing over the fact that DOMESTIC ABUSE was just presented to us in today’s episode.
It wasn’t even so much as hinted at. It was shown as explicitly as possible without actually showing the physical act in process.
I mean, the episode was great and all (Cassie, beat still my heart), but am I the only one who thought this was kind of a big deal? Cause I literally sat in front of my television with eyes wide at what I was actually seeing on a children’s show.
What domestic abuse was shown?
Publishing this publicly just in case anyone else has this question.
The abuse was more implied more through the reactions of both Tai’s mother and Maurice’s. The timidity of Tai’s mother, including her apprehension to address the problem and her defence of Maurice’s actions (“He has good days, too”), gave viewers a perspective on how things work within the household. In addition, Maurice’s hostile attitude and physical reaction to Jaime’s interrogation (clenched fists, audible threats, taunts) more than suggested what probably would happen should Tai disobey or go against Maurice’s authority, which is also implied to be an often occurrence.
Though it is clear that Tai’s family is more than dysfunctional, the general feel of fear present throughout the family’s interactions really solidified the fact that something violent was going on within the Longshadow household. I believe Tai’s decision to runaway and leave Maurice’s abuse was not a childish act of rebellion, but a means of escape from a dangerous living situation in where he was Maurice’s main target for his ire.
Hopefully, I’ve painted a picture of how the abuse was shown. Though I’ve never dealt with it first-hand myself, to me the implications of today’s episode were very clear in how the ‘family dynamics’ worked within the Longshadow household. Abuse isn’t always recognizable on a physical level, but an emotional and mental one as well. I hope I’ve captured most of the signs shown throughout the episode, but I have plans to watch it again soon enough, so if I’ve missed any examples, I’ll be sure to acknowledge them as well.