Okay. Here’s the thing – and I told myself I wasn’t going to comment on this debate about how there are no POC in Agent Carter and how there are no characters in the show that represent any sexuality other than heterosexuality…
–but yeah, I have to say something.
First of all, if viewers begin boycottingAgent Carter for either of the reasons I just mentioned, you are also KILLING one of the greatest television shows we’ve ever had that represents, exposes, challenges, and calls out sexism in America, society, and the workforce at large. You are slapping feminism – for which so many of you aggressively rally support – in the face.
Boycotting this show does one thing and one thing only, people – it tells Marvel and ABC and all of their affiliates that a television show with an independant, solo, FEMALE LEAD cannot survive on mainstream television.
You are not getting across your message that you want more people of color represented in this show or a variety of sexualities represented. The message you are sending LOUD AND CLEAR to Marvel and ABC is that you – the so-called feminists, the women and men of America and abroad who support strong, independent women – are not really as interested nor supportive of the topic as it seemed you were.
Do we all wish that POC were represented in a tremendous scale on television? Where it didn’t seem forced or done out of necessity? But that those POC are featured because of their talents, intelligence, character, and capabilites? YES.
But PLEASE. CAN WE NOT SHOOT THIS SHOW IN THE HEAD FOR THIS SAKE?
Before you come running angrily at me, shouting how I obviously do not truly care about equal representation among POC and the sexualities, let me validate my reasoning first.
Agent Carter is set in the year 1946.
This being the case, a little thing called segregation was still flourishing in the grand United States of America at that time.
Colored people lived separately – segregated – from white people. It was the culture. It is that grim portion of history that we all know and hate.
The truth of the matter is that no matter how evolved Peggy Carter’s thinking might be, no matter if Captain America fought side by side with Gabe Jones (i.e. a black man) during the war, America was still heavily racist.
Does Agent Thompson’s obvious disdain for Peggy Carter being an SSR agent irk you? Do you think it’s disgusting how he blatantly tells her to her face that she will “never” be treated as an equal to men? If that is the blatant and arrogant disrespect people show for a talented, capable, and fierce woman like Peggy Carter in this time period —- how much more disdain do you think they would show for a person of color?
On the front of sexuality – again – America was heavily doused in narrow-mindedness, ignorance, fear, intolerance, and hatred for anything that was deemed “out of the normal”. In 1946, a homosexual, lesbian, trans*, etc., etc. would have been tormented, beaten, threatened, shunned, evicted from living spaces, entire towns, their families, and/or possibly even killed.
Is this all a very dramatic and sad story? Yes. But you know what? It is the fact of American history.
We must have enough respect for the time period this show was set in – the same respect the writers no doubt have for it – to recognize and understand that in many instances it would be next to impossible, if not entirely impossible, to carry off a storyline involving a POC or a person of non-het sexuality.
Could they do it?? Maybe! But they are also adhering very accurately to the time period by excluding those classifications of people from this show.
I know that we all want equal representation across the board, but please, let’s recognize the HUGE STEP OF PROGRESS that has been made by GETTING equal representation IN A TELEVISION SHOW ENTIRELY ABOUT A WOMAN.
Another note, we have EIGHT (8) episodes in this show, ladies and gentlemen. That’s not a lot of script or plot to work with to cram in every subject and topic we might like to have included.
So yes, I understand where you are coming from. But please. Don’t murder this show and everything that it represents and stands for by boycotting it. We WILL get there one day to equal representation on TV, and Agent Carter is a TREMENDOUS first step in that direction.
Rather than dismissing it – please – recognize the truth of what this show is and support it —- for all our sakes.