Monday, April 30, 2007

On Spartans

Well, after weighing in with my perspectives on Sexual Violence in terms of Gorgo’s rape, I’ve finally gotten round to watching 300.

I’ll be as honest as I can here. There is a part of me that was incredibly entertained by the action. A part of me exhilarated by the battle. A part of me admiring the epic style. A part of me a lil guiltily turned on by the well-oiled almost unnatural physical perfection of the Spartan army.

But there’s something about underlying tones of sexism, homophobia, racism, masculinist crap about the weakness of emotion, the hideous evoking of simplistic ‘West takes on the Eastern scum’ mentality, the notion of physical perfection as moral superiority, that killed my vacuous buzz. While I acknowledge that some of this was somewhat in line with supposed Spartan ideology, I am no fool when it comes to detecting a whiff of creator agreement and embelishment.

I think the scene that undermined my superficial enjoyment the most had to be the part where Ephealtes enters the tent I’d like to call ‘The Diversity/Depravity Tent’, where we get a nice solid message about how lesbians, the handicapped, the deformed, the self-mutilating, the 7-feet-tall dark skinned men in makeup and the sexually ‘deviant’ are all evil sons of bitches, part of the same team, and want to take over the world. It was a place where the acceptance of diversity, however extreme, became synonymous with submission to evil. I mean, if ever there was a message that diversity equals depravity, this is where it got its public service announcement.

What. Utter. Tripe.

3 comments:

Ami Angelwings said...

I think it's kinda like how I feel watching Independence day :|

It's incredibly fun and entertaining and you wanna stand up and cheer when the good guys win... but then afterwards, when you come down from it, you go.. >.>;; And the over the top America-beats-all feeling kinda makes me go "blah" for enjoying it that much XD

Anonymous said...

Alex-

just stumbled across your blog--LOVE IT. Especially your insights into Diana's "hero's journey."

Don't suppose you have a gay uncle I could marry (I'm too old for you, alas)?

AlexinWonderLand said...

Ami - not that long ago i was in a backpackers on the south island and, after a hard days hitch-hiking, sat down with the rest of the travellers to watch Independence Day. needless to say, i sank in the corner and wished i could hide my childish glee with the sorrow of my sensibilities, or a large hat.

anonymous - alas! no gay uncles, though what an amusing concept :)