Monday, March 30, 2015

Reblog: Rantasmo Korra

This is an awesome video by Rantasmo about The Legend of Korra.

I think when discussions of queerbaiting come up, it is important to look at the role social censorship has had in affecting what is allowed on the screen based on what is considered morally appropriate in child/family targeting animation. If we look at a film produced during the Hays code, we would never describe a flamboyant character as queerbaiting. During the Hays code LGBTQ characters were not allowed on the screen. Coded behavior, dialogue and visual markers were the only way to hint at a character sexuality. Similarly, in American animation creators work within the confines of what is considered appropriate for their target audience.

Here are some quotes from  Bryan Konietzko, co-creator of The Legend of Korra, that shows both the way creators censor their own ideas when they assume something won't be approved of by networks, as well as the censorship by the network in shaping the original intent for the characters:

 "As we wrote Book 1, before the audience had ever laid eyes on Korra and Asami, it was an idea I would kick around the writers’ room. At first we didn't give it much weight, not because we think same-sex relationships are a joke, but because we never assumed it was something we would ever get away with depicting on an animated show for a kids network in this day and age, or at least in 2010. "

"We approached the network and while they were supportive there was a limit to how far we could go with it, as just about every article I read accurately deduced. It was originally written in the script over a year ago that Korra and Asami held hands as they walked into the spirit portal. We went back and forth on it in the storyboards, but later in the retake process I staged a revision where they turned towards each other, clasping both hands in a reverential manner, in a direct reference to Varrick and Zhu Li’s nuptial pose from a few minutes prior. "

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