Disney hedged their bets spectacularly wrong. Vice is hype, nothing more, but Disney thought the magic wand they appropriated from Cinderella’s fairy godmother worked on other misogynistic properties — too bad she got woke somewhere along the way and let them all face reality…
When #MeToo struck, it hit mostly entertainment and journalism, two very sexist industries, and they are no less sexist today as they were prior to the movement.
Nothing has changed, except a lot of creepy old relics got kicked to the curb so that younger and cheaper employees could fill their slots.
Journalists in particular have been seething over #MeToo as it is an industry that never admits to being at fault, wrong, flawed, or deficient in any way.
And here is something that has been going on for almost a year.
We are seeing a shift in how bad boys are being portrayed in the press.
James Gunn's old tweets revealing his creepy side hit the fan boys particularly hard because he was directing Marvel movies for Disney, and that's a cushy job to have.
But superhero movies are soulless, by the numbers, and CGI intense. They are predictable with the same kind of music, special effects, and plots.
There is no actual talent to them. They are run by committee. Looking at a single superhero movie's credits, you feel as if they just took an old telephone book, ripped out all the pages, and just filmed that because no one would notice who was who (considering I used to know who was who, I know it can be done).
So, we have people who are fired from jobs every day. James Gunn puked sick junk on Twitter a decade ago, Disney didn't need the headache, cut him loose, and could keep the machine running with a cheaper replacement because these are disposable movies with franchise and merchandising outgrowth.
Just tell the little people what they want to hear, have some happy music, nifty special effects, some funny lines, a predictable story where the good guys win, and prime those consumerist brats to want all of the action figures when the film is done.
Gunn was expendable because Disney is not art, but a factory where they churn out epic junk. Star Wars, Marvel, Princesses, even pirates, they are established and inoffensive. They are essentially action figures dancing on the screen. Who moves the action figures around is unimportant.
But Gunn's firing is not sitting well with journalists. The have made this story sound as if Gunn was a changed man and a victim, which he wasn't.
People get fired from flipping hamburgers for all sorts of stupid reasons, and we don't see stories where reporters are getting worked up over that. It is Disney's dime and property, and they can hire and fire whoever they wish. That's their chess board, and they don't make money from me.
But it is not as obnoxiously biased as this story in Hollywood Reporter about the fortunes of one CBS News honcho whose leadership is said to have spawned a "toxic" work environment.
The angle of the story from those who work under that regime is that things have improved, but were never "that bad."
I find that angle very interesting because the core of the story is about 60 Minutes.
The newsmagazine that never gave people they did not like second chances, understanding, or wonder if someone changed.
They dug up dirt from decades ago, and confronted various people.
And now that it is hitting their own newsrooms, suddenly, there are all sorts of excuses.
It doesn't matter if the bad behaviour was a long time ago. A long time ago there were people who were harmed and their lives were forever derailed, and they have the right to have those responsible for that sabotage be held accountable.
And why are things better? Is it because these people are now minding themselves because someone above them is finally paying attention to their actions? And should that overlord ignore it again, will it lapse back to the old ways?
This is a manipulative way of trying to salvage a bad situation by making excuses and to exploit the passage of time to soften the blow of unacceptable behaviour. These people had no trouble to create a hostile work environment. They had no trouble letting bad behaviour dictate the tone of the workplace.
People downplay and make excuses because the idea of (a) being held accountable for their own feral behaviour, (b) their image at Winning At Life is proven to be yet another lie they told, or (c) having to be inconvenienced by defending their actions and enabling doesn't please them.
But mostly because 60 Minutes is about the last news product that has any prestige left, and this blow shows they are no better or sincere in their coverage.
And now, this mess. A mess CBS is in heavy denial over.
Disney can dump Gunn and move on. CBS News is not in the same position. There is damage control and consequences.
Except now journalism's fall from grace has plummeted so low, that people are not outraged -- not because they don't find it obnoxious, but because journalism is not a thing anymore...