Sexual Assault And You

22 Jul

… Jesus, that is a dreadful title.

We’re putting the on-going review on hold for a bit, to go over something that I’ve been thinking about for a long time: Namely, rape. (And if you take that quote out of context, I’m shoving a golf club in you sideways.)

I think we can all agree that sexual assault is a terrible, inhuman thing. And if you don’t agree with that, feel free to leave now. I’d really feel better not having somebody like that reading what I write, I’d have to start scrubbing my view count with steel wool just to get the “oh god no” out of it.

So yeah, we’re not here to talk about how bad sexual assault is, or how people should be punished over it, but to go over something that has been a thorn in my side for a long ass time. Namely, how should a reviewer react to this?

Here’s an example: In one of my earliest reviews (or at least, the earliest one I can remember), Nazis At The Center Of The Earth, there was a scene where the women of the group were taken to the shower and gang raped by Nazi zombies. And I only spent a paragraph on it. REALLY, past me?! These women have their bodies repeatedly and messily violated by inhuman monsters, and you can barely spend nine fucking words on it?!

Oh, here’s another one: In the Gacy House review, I mentioned how one of the leads died from getting raped by the ghost of John Wayne Gacy, and instead of sputtering and screaming in horrified indignation, I turned “ghostrape” in to a running gag?! (Also, upon reading that review again, I was WAY too lenient on that piece of garbage.) Hell, it isn’t until the 100 Ghost Street review that I finally started reacting with the proper indignation!

(This is your friendly neighbourhood reminder that I used to suck way more than I do now.)

Rape is a standard part of horror films, for better and for worse, and so it’s natural that somebody who reviews horror films in his spare time would run into it way too often. Nazis At The Center Of The Earth, Gacy House, 100 Ghost Street, I Kissed A Vampire, Jesus Christ, Vampire Hunter, The Human Centipede Two, Maniac, Lovely Molly (?), and I’m sure I’m missing more!

And what’s even more, I’m not just a critic, I am a comedian, more or less. So, I’ll bring it back to my thesis statement: How should I react to all this?! Do I crack jokes, to try and make the audience laugh and maybe forget about how terrible the events are? Do I react with disgust and horror and decry the director for stooping so low? Do I admit it’s an effective means for making the audience uncomfortable in a genre that thrives specifically with an uncomfortable audience?

… Oh, I hope you weren’t expecting some grand statement at the end of this. I am legitimately asking you what I should do here. Any thoughts?

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One Response to “Sexual Assault And You”

  1. Alexander Dunwall July 23, 2014 at 5:39 pm #

    I say react depending on the variables. Is it rape in a way that is meant to make you feel bad, — and if you actually do (or come close to) — then show your emotions. Is it used comedicly (if that’s ever a case, shame on you, writers. Shame.), then either show your disgust in their use of it comedically or laugh (again…I hope rape is never used comedically that’s just a disgusting bastardized idea.) if it did it the joke good.

    Basically, do how you feel you would respond to it if it /wasn’t/ rape. Then reevaluate if it was rape, and find a middle ground.

    I myself know a few rape victims, and I know how bad rape is. So even though it is so bad — don’t let it deter your writing. Don’t let a rape joke or porn-esque rape scene make you have a bunch if troubles, just try not to handle the situation badly.

    I hope this could be of some help, sorry if my point gets a bit jumbled up in this.

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