Zac Hart

Transformers 2: "Homophobia in Disguise"

Filed By Zac Hart | July 02, 2009 5:00 PM | comments

Filed in: Entertainment, The Movement

It's 9:00pm. It was date night for the husband and I. We had a nice dinner at Applebees before watching Transformers 2: Revenge of the Fallen - The IMAX Experience. transformers.pngThe movie started a little after 7, and anyone who has seen the new Transformers movie knows its runtime is ungodly long, spanning close to 2.5 hours. So why - on date night - am I compelled to blog before the movie even officially ends?

No, the hubby and I didn't sneak out for a lil' date-night frivolity that I just had to share with you, and no, we didn't get into a fight with a redneck requiring us to leave the theater early (the entertainment of that alone might have been worth the price of admission). Even though I chose the movie tonight, for the first time in my life I walked out in the middle of a movie because it offended me so badly.

Homophobic remarks, racial stereotypes and anti-Semitic slurs abound - in a "children's" movie? You've got to be kidding... Right?!

(May not be work safe - yeah, that's how bad this movie gets)

Sadly, I wish I was kidding. I almost couldn't believe it when one of the robots sounding and looking oddly like "Tow-mater"- buck teeth and all - commented to one of the straight male protagonists: "You gonna go cry to your boyfriend?" and then proceeded to call him a "pussy" to drive the point home. What right does a robot, a redneck robot at that, have to insist someone is gay because they don't like having their life threatened by tons of scrap metal?

It didn't help that this "kid" was constantly being gay "sploshed" - emasculating him every chance they got. If you are unfamiliar with "Sploshing," see any MaryKate and Ashley movie where the producer/director/writer purposefully degrades the main characters in embarrassing, typically food-based, antics.

I decided to let that one slide (though it changed my mood towards the movie dramatically). Maybe it was just a one-time thing? Maybe it was secretly written into the script by a gay writer and I was jumping to conclusions, but after another hour of poorly written plotlines and too many action sequences to count, it happened again but this time to our Semitic brethren.

"Did that robot just call that man a 'nappy headed' Jew?!"

For close to two hours, we endured homophobic, racist, and anti-Semitic jokes/slurs/comments made by the "Robots in Disguise." The longer I watched, the more I felt this was a "specia-mercial" put on by our good ol' friends at the Westboro Baptist Church in order to indoctrinate our children with hate-speech and crude stereotypical one-liners.

I understand the movie was PG-13, but this is still a children's movie. I looked around and saw 8, 10, and 12 years laughing at this crude, hate-filled humor, with the parents sitting quietly next to them. For the next six months, these kids will be pummeled by Transformers commercials, cartoons and toy promos promoting this movie, and no one is saying anything about this?!

Where is GLAAD? Are they too busy watching Kathy Griffin: My Life on the D-List to do their job and actually watch new movies to make sure stuff like this doesn't happen? Is Hasbro content to have their extremely profitable toy line marred with hate speech in the name of "humor?" Did Michael Bay actually approve the script and these jokes before releasing this hot mess onto the public at large?

Wait... Nix that last one. Even though I didn't finish watching Transformers 2, it is quite obvious Michael Bay had absolutely no idea what was going on throughout most of the film, let alone something as insignificant as the dialogue.

There's a line that's been crossed here. Maybe I'm just touchy because police raided a gay bar in Fort Worth, Texas, or a lesbian had her house raided in New York because she was a political activist for gay rights (God - that reminds me... I need to get new locks for my doors). All occurred on the same weekend as the 40th anniversary of the Stonewall riots.

I get it. We're winning equality at an alarming rate and the "Right," wants to knock us down a peg, but a children's movie?! Since when did the Transformer's slogan go from "Robots in Disguise" to "Homophobia in Disguise," and Dammit! Why is no one talking about this?

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bigolpoofter | July 3, 2009 9:48 PM

When I read previous reviews of the film that focused on over-the-top racist caricatures throughout the film, I made the conscious decision to pass on a ticket, despite wanting some of male lead. That homopbobia is pervasive, then, comes as little surprise.

Still, it's shocking that a studio, distributors, and movie houses would enable thinley veiled defamation on the Big Screen. More troubling that our advocates in the media are perceived as either impotent or asleep at the switch.

Do we need home-grown pickets in response?

steve talbert | July 3, 2009 11:32 PM

Don't forget the lesbian couple in San Diego who had their fund raiser for a congressional candidate raided last weekend by the San Diego police because it was a 'Democratic demonstration'....

Michael Bay is notorious in the already crypto-Homophobic Hollywood film industry as being the most hyper-inflated male ego imaginable. He screams at people, laughs at the mishaps of stunt performers involving personal injury and has been on at least one occasion been punched out for essentially being an asshole. He makes big bucks without art or any sense of irony so the studios love him while his crews fear and despise him.
I'll refrain from calling him a popular industry term for him: A piece of shit.