I want to know what the crux of Isabelle’s storyline is.
Last season, we see her as a beacon of justice. Unlearning bigotry, standing up for what she believes in and who she cares for, and fighting for what’s right. I won’t pretend that I don’t have a problem with how she had to give her emotional and physical labor to everyone around her without proper reciprocation last season, but at least she was written properly. We saw Isabelle in her best light: beautiful, caring, strong, intelligent, vindicating. Justice personified.
Prior to the yin fen storyline this season, she’s been completely sidelined. None of her scenes had to do with just her - she was comforting Alec, or trying to find Jace, or training Clary. Once again, her selflessness was used to propel the storyline forward and to galvanize the development of the characters around her without any reciprocation or acknowledgement.
Now we have a yin fen storyline. And as many Latinx fans and other fans of color have pointed out, giving the Latina woman a drug-addiction storyline is racist no matter how how you want to spin it. Villainizing her and portraying her as “impure” in direct contrast to Clary being “pure” and “angelic” (in episode 2x06) is racialized misogyny.
I was happy when Isabelle stood up for herself and told Clary quite frankly that it was hurtful of Clary to keep secrets from Isabelle after all that Izzy had done for her, but the narrative used the moment as a way to curry sympathy for Clary and inspire the audience’s ire at Isabelle. Narratives have been pitting women of color as the “bullies” of precious, fragile, innocent, sunflower-good white women for years. Making Isabelle into this angry, out-of-character, haggard shell of herself is incredibly disgusting, not the least because it plays into stereotypes about addicts that are very harmful and it contributes to the racism against Latinx people and Latina women in particular.
We can and should also discuss how depicting Isabelle as hedonistic is yet another way writers perpetuate the racist, misogynistic, and fetishized tropes they use to write Latina women.
Isabelle is smart - she’s the best forensic pathologist in NYC. Isabelle is kind and loving - just like Magnus, she drops everything to help out the people around her. Isabelle is strong - as many other characters consistently point out, she’s talented and agile and fierce. Isabelle is self-sacrificing - she takes on too much all at once to help the people she loves, almost always with no acknowledgement or reciprocation from others in kind. Isabelle is prone to self-harm just like the other characters - she fights on and hides her injuries despite growing pain. Isabelle is determined and merciful all at once. We have seen glimpses of all of these core aspects of her. But they have just been glimpses!
Where the other characters get fleshed out storylines that showcase all of their complexities in grand, heroic, moments that play up the continuity of the plot, Isabelle only gets moments. And now her character is being overwhelmed by this yin fen plot that’s not doing anything to highlight something new or unique or significant about her character.
So I ask again: what is the point? Are you trying to show that Isabelle struggles with feelings of self-deprecation and depersonalization? Are you trying to show that she has insecurities, that she isn’t as confident as she looks? Are you trying to highlight the detrimental effects her mother’s neglect has had on her, and the complex relationship she has with her?
If so, you can do all of that - and MORE - without playing into grossly racist stereotypes, without villaizing Latinx people, and without utilizing tired old racist tropes. Show Isabelle bond with the people she loves by having THEM reach out and reciprocate and initiate. Show her coming to terms with her insecurities without making her suffer like this. There is nothing good about her storyline right now. It’s incredibly unfair that a character who has been shown to struggle against learned, embedded bigotries and has stood up for justice and mercy time and time again is being reduced to this. She’s isolated from her mother, her brothers, from Clary, from Magnus. It’s not fair. Isabelle is such an amazing character and person - she’s a scientist, a warrior, a friend. She’s entitled to a well-written, interesting, unique, and heroic storyline, especially considering that she is one of the seven MAIN characters. She’s integral to the plot, and frankly, Clary, Simon, Alec, and Jace would not be where they’re at without her.
It’s just not fair and it makes no sense whatsoever. Horrible, horrible writing all around. And if you justify this or make excuses for it, you’re horribly racist too.
a playlist: mainstream bangers from white boys experiencing heartbreak that highlighted my adolescence
(and looking back in hindsight are actually problematic because they promote the Nice Guy mentality and/or demonize their significant other by placing themselves on a pedestal in a situation where that kind of victimization is unnecessary ala aubrey graham)
breakeven - the script apologize - onerepublic everything you want - vertical horizon it ends tonight - the all-american rejects down - blink-182 my friends over you - new found glory someday - the strokes hate - plain white t’s mr. brightside - the killers makedamnsure - taking back sunday seventy times seven - brand new i write sins not tragedies - panic at the disco running away - hoobastank
i think we’ve all been around on the internet to know that the practice of doing/saying shit disingenuously for the sole purpose of pissing people off isnt actually as funny as lots of people think it is but i’d like to propose one singular, shining exception and thats this: stubbornly insisting that funko pop is “actually really good” and refusing to elaborate in order to rile people up is objectively hilarious
every single time i see people complaining about superg*rl and how they fucked up the main interracial couple for some white dude i’m forever glad i never watched that show. and 10000x more grateful for westallen.
We weren’t able to know this would happen, and, if this happened to me, is because I choosed it… I had a long and happy life by you and yours brothers side… you still had, and have, a lot of thing to live and see of this wide world. I wanted YOU to live them for me… do you undertsand?…