Season 4 of She-Ra and the Princesses of Power debuted this week and I binged it, not only enjoying but feeling my mind absolutely blown away by the powerful emotional arcs and the build up to the finale as mysteries were finally resolved in ways I had not anticipated. It’s a wonderfully crafted piece of writing that has built up over the previous three seasons with its treatment of its characters and the world.
It’s also an example of media that does not absolve the characters of their actions or words, and leans heavily into the more complicated issues of friendship in very intense, emotional ways.
However, before we continue, I will tell you all that beyond this, there be spoilers. MAJOUR spoilers.
And oh, the tears, they are delicious, falling from the faces of white dudebros angry that out of the past 50 years of Doctor Who, the longest running Sci-Fi show on television (second longest being Ultraman for you trivia buffs), in 2017, the Doctor is finally a woman.
Never mind the fact that the Doctor is an alien with 2 hearts who travels in a pocket of subspace wrapped up in a malfunctioning chameleon circuit, who regenerates into a new form on the brink of death, oh no…
All of that is just fine and dandy, it’s that she’s a woman now that’s unacceptable.
However, one thing to keep in mind is that out of the wealth of wonderful, leading ladies in our pop culture, popping up in some pretty big names in our fandom, they’re still, for the most part, white and straight.
Feminist Freqency was the first I saw to point this out:
It needs to be said that DW is still an OVERWHELMINGLY white show & that issues of representation do not exist in isolation from each other.
Essentially, while I am very excited about the Doctor being a woman, and Moffat finally leaving the show (because wow did I have problems with his writing), there should not be a demand on women of colour to lend their support to the series just because the lead is now a woman.
Free emotional labour is something demanded of them enough as it is, particularly if you’re a black woman, so don’t do that. It’s selfish, ignorant, cruel and heartless.