Hollywood director Joss Whedon has been on a slow-motion political implosion for about six years, but last week it became much more obvious when he wished one of his fellow Americans were raped — by a rhino. Yes, as bizarre as it is for your friendly neighborhood blogger to chronicle this sad turn of events, on some level it is not the surprising. After all, Mr. Whedon also began using coup-like rhetoric after Hillary Clinton lost the 2016 U.S. presidential election.
If you want more details on Mr. Whedon’s embrace of Ultron-level hate, then check out my latest YouTube video and let me know what you think in the comments section below. And, if you like the format, then be sure to subscribe for regular updates.
There was once a time when Robert Downey Jr. understood that telling people how to vote was not something pretend superheroes should be doing. Marvel’s “Iron Man” inherently knew that intelligent swathes of the public will gladly make guys like him a millionaire for doing a good job standing in front of green screens, but they have no desire to hear his thoughts on domestic and foreign policy. That has changed.
RDJ’s millionaire buddy Joss Whedon — the guy who said Mitt Romney was the type of guy who would bring forth the zombie apocalypse — now wants us to believe that Donald Trump will presumably usher in the super-duper zombie apocalypse.
Mr. Whedon created a pro-Hillary Clinton super PAC called “Save the Day” to push the message and enlisted Hollywood actors to star in the group’s ads.
Weirdly enough, Mr. Downey Jr. and the other actors acknowledge how pathetic and condescending projects like “Save the Day” are while essentially saying, “Yeah, we’re still going to shamelessly influence dumb people, anyway.”
Here is what director Joss Whedon toldThe Hollywood Reporter on Wednesday:
“Whedon acknowledges that ‘no one really cares what an actor’s opinion is,’ but he says that’s not the strategy. ‘Seeing somebody famous makes people stop. Seeing something funny makes people stop. Seeing something with emotion makes people stop,’ he adds. ‘Those are the ways you can get to people.'”
Bernie Sanders slammed his rival’s 1996 use of the term “super predators” Thursday evening, calling it “racist” on stage at the Democratic debate in Brooklyn.
Asked why Sanders had criticized Bill Clinton’s defense of his wife use of the phrase “super predators,” Sanders responded: “Because it was a racist term and everybody knew it was a racist term.”
In the 1990s, while President Bill Clinton was promoting a tough-on-crime agenda, his wife — then-First Lady Hillary Clinton — was gathering support for the 1994 Violent Crime Control Act. In one speech, given in 1996, the first lady warned against the rise of “super predators,” touting the ’94 bill as one line of defense against such at-risk youth.
“They are often the kinds of kids that are called ‘super predators,'” she said at the time, going on to describe them thus: “No conscience, no empathy, we can talk about why they ended up that way, but first we have to bring them to heel.”
It’s pretty hard to tell people to vote for the allegedly awesome Democrat when Bernie Sanders called Mrs. Clinton’s “super-predators” remark racist. Again, in years past Robert Downey Jr. seemed to understand what a fool he would look like by appearing in these campaigns, but somewhere along the line he decided to join the parade of politically correct narcissists for election-year virtue signaling.
Question for Mr. Downey Jr.: How does it feel to spend all the good will you’ve built up over the years by staying out of politics on a woman who should be wearing an orange jumpsuit in a federal penitentiary? I suppose that doesn’t matter, now that your “Save the Day” appearances guarantee years of swanky parties thrown by millionaire hypocrites like Joss Whedon. Sad.
“Avengers: Age of Ultron” won’t be in American theaters until May 1, 2015, but “Avengers: Age of the Offended” can be found any time of the day on Tumblr and Twitter. Aliens and robots may not be able to defeat Hawkeye and Captain America, but professional whiners have shown that they can make Jeremy Renner and Chris Evans apologize for going off script.
Messrs. Evans and Renner made the mistake April 22 of believing that only rational adults would hear their interview with Digital Spy. Prickly men and women who go through life looking for things to “trigger” them made the actors pay for it immediately.
Digital Spy: I know a lot of fans were actually pretty invested in the idea of Natasha with actually either or both of you guys, and now obviously she’s with Bruce. What do you guys make of that?
Renner: She’s a slut.
Chris Evans: **laughing hysterically** I was going to say something along that line. She’s a complete whore.
Renner: What a trick, man!
The jokes show an odd lapse in judgment considering the millions of children who will watch the interview on YouTube. It would make sense for the actors to apologize to parents who weren’t expecting to get slut-bombed while watching promotional interviews with their kids. However, saying sorry to single women for calling a fictional Russian spy a “slut” is just another sad capitulation to online censorship cops.
Note to the Jeannes of the world: They didn’t call a “woman” a slut — they called a fictional woman a slut. Regardless, Chris Evans and Jeremy Renner both promptly issued a blanket apology:
Chris Evans: Yesterday we were asked about the rumors that Black Widow wanted to be in a relationship with both Hawkeye and Captain America. We answered in a very juvenile and offensive way that rightfully angered some fans. I regret it and sincerely apologize.
Jeremy Renner: I am sorry that this tasteless joke about a fictional character offended anyone. It was not meant to be serious in any way. Just poking fun during an exhausting and tedious press tour.
The strange thing about the whole “slut” controversy is that it occurred at the very same moment Scarlett Johansson was telling a women’s magazine about the time Black Widow said she was “whoever you want me to be.”
I think my favorite thing about playing her is the character is you know very kind of slippery — she’s a slippery fish by trade — but in fact she’s very, she’s really honest. I mean she’s, it’s kind of an interesting dichotomy because you have this character who you would expect to be sort of —she says in Cap 2 ‘I’m whoever you want me to be,’ but in truth, when you’re talking to Natasha you’re really getting Natasha. She’s very straightforward and I like that part of her. […] She’s kind of a chameleon but then she’s very much like herself.
Black Widow is a “chameleon” who can be “whoever you want” her to be — unless it’s a “slut.” That is sexist. She must only be a supersmartindependentrolemodel (one word) — even though she’s a Russian spy who probably slept with men while undercover (or was that under covers?).
The one good thing about the apology offered by Messrs. Evans and Renner is that it refers to their comments as “juvenile and offensive.” At no point do the men give credence to accusations that their jokes (about a fictional character) were sexist. The full-time complainers were able to extract an apology from the actors, but it was one that was carefully worded to only apply to those with a legitimate gripe. Marvel Studios’ Hawkeye and Captain America were forced to join common sense in tactical retreat, but war was not totally lost. They’ll live to fight another day when “Avengers: Infinity Offended.”
Exit question: Is there any time that it is permissible for a man to jokingly call a woman (or fictional character) a slut in 2015, or is the word completely off limits to the perpetually-offended crowd?
“Avengers: Age of Ultron” is said to have a budget of roughly $250 million. The Marvel movie required shooting in 25 locations, including countries like Bangladesh, South Africa, Italy, South Korea and England. With all the cast and crew and sets involved, it had to leave a hefty carbon footprint. And yet, somehow, director Joss Whedon and Mark Ruffalo (aka: The Hulk) thought it would be a good idea to lecture the rest of us on climate change this Earth Day.
If Joss Whedon really cared about climate change as his self-congratulatory tweets suggest, then he would renounce the kind of big budget movies (and carbon footprints) Marvel Studios leaves all over the globe. He won’t do that though, because he really, really likes the millions of dollars Marvel puts into his bank account.
Mark Ruffalo is no different.
Yes, we can do something — like not act in a movie with a carbon footprint that 99.9 percent of moviegoers could not duplicate in 10,000 lifetimes.
The weird thing about hastags like #ClimateChangeIsReal is that there is basically no one who denies that climate changes. It’s always changed. In fact, yours truly blogged on climate change after my visit to Virginia Living Museum in Newport News, Virginia in 2013.
Here is what one of the educational notes next to the museum’s riverbank fossils said:
“Since the end of the dinosaur age, eastern Virginia has been covered by ocean water many times. Beneath these seas, layers upon layers of shells, bones and teeth from abundant ocean life accumulated to form fossil-bearing sediments. Coastal river bluffs now display these ancient sediment layers, in particular, a 3.5-to-5 million-year-old fossil-rich band called Yorktown Formation,” (Virginia Living Museum).
It is safe to say that the climate has changed quite a bit over the course of 5 million years — so much so that the great state of Virginia has been underwater multiple times.
The reason why Hollywood actors and directors engage in meaningless Twitter rhetoric like “#ClimateChangeIsReal” is because any time they’re forced to debate substantive questions they look “dumber than weather.”
Here are some real questions for your favorite “Avengers: Age of Ultron” environmental activist stars:
How much does man have an effect on climate in relation to things like that giant ball of exploding gas called the sun?
If man is responsible for significant changes to the earth’s ever-changing climate, what are the proposed political solutions to the problem?
Will the political solutions put forth by Hollywood actors and directors result in losses to freedom and liberty?
Will the political solutions put forth by men like Mark Ruffalo actually have any tangible effect?
Those are questions Messrs. Whedon and Ruffalo aren’t comfortable answering, which is why they opt instead for tweets that result in fawning praise by their Twitter followers.
The next time these guys essentially try to shame you because you like nice long showers or vehicles that don’t run on batteries, ask them how it feels to be a part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe juggernaut and its Galactus-sized carbon footprint. My guess is that that they’ll run away faster than Quicksilver.
In 2009 Robert Downey Jr. was interviewed by the New York Times. When I read it I smiled, because the old phrase, “A conservative is a liberal who’s been mugged by reality,” seemed to ring true for the good actor:
“I have a really interesting political point of view, and it’s not always something I say too loud at dinner tables here, but you can’t go from a $2,000-a-night suite at La Mirage to a penitentiary and really understand it and come out a liberal. You can’t. I wouldn’t wish that experience on anyone else, but it was very, very, very educational for me and has informed my proclivities and politics ever since.”
It turns out that one paragraph in a single interview years ago made quite a few waves in the Hollywood community, so much so that Jeffrey Wells of Hollywood Elsewhere tried his hand at character assassination in 2011. I wonder if he’ll do a companion piece, since Joss Whedon wants to insert Democratic talking points into Captain America’s mouth; Mark Ruffalo (i.e., The Hulk) wants to stop oil companies from providing gas and heat to our homes; Samuel L. Jackson (i.e., Nick Fury) admits that the only reason he voted for Barack Obama was because he’s black; and Scarlett Johansson (i.e., Black Widow) hawks Barack Obama clothing and accessories for his re-election campaign. I won’t hold my breath.
Given all this, the universe demands that I write something pro-Robert Downey Jr.
Let us first establish one thing: Liberal Hollywood actors get to be activists. They get to loudly and proudly state their opinions. They get handed megaphones in front of large audiences or microphones off to the side of a fashion show runway. Robert gives a passing reference to rejecting liberalism and he’s attacked. Here’s what an anonymous source told Wells:
“His values are pure Republican values … He’s a serious materialist. He loves the great clothes, the beautiful house, the cool cars. He’s a ‘protect the rich’ guy. Why should the rich have to pay for this or that? The people who have it should keep it, and the people who don’t have it shouldn’t complain.”
Really? So Robert Downey Jr. tells the New York Times that his time spent in prison had a profound impact on his politics, but somehow we’re supposed to believe it’s really about wanting to swim in Olympic-sized pools of gold like Scrooge McDuck? Consider me skeptical.
What’s more likely: that Robert Downey Jr. found out that there are some really bad, really evil people behind bars…or that he just loves designer clothes? What’s more likely: that Robert Downey Jr. learned that allowing someone to suffer the consequences of their actions is often times better than perpetually shielding them from blow back…or that he wants to have a really nice house he can lord over the rest of us?
Robert admitted to the New York Times that he didn’t talk politics too loudly at dinner tables in Hollywood. Can anyone blame him? Even somewhat obscure allusions to a conservative streak gets the guy lambasted by his peers. It would be incredibly dangerous for Hollywood’s “Iron Man,” … someone as “cool” as Downey, to be openly conservative. The kiddies might take to such a message if it was articulated by an actor with a respected resume that runs the gamut. Downey can give a serious performance in an art house flick, he can do dark comedy, or he can do the summer blockbuster. And so, Hollywood must make the message loud and clear: “Great career you have there. It would be a shame if something happened to it.”
I’m sure that liberals in Hollywood aren’t happy that Iron Man 3 is getting The Tom Clancy treatment, particularly if that includes a script infused with Clancy’s conservatism. And so, I will leave them with one more comment to ponder. During his time directed by Joss Whedon for The Avengers, Downey said this:
“I will never mess with your intent. I will question every day how you plan to get there. But I will never mess with what you’re trying to accomplish.”
That sounds like many conservatives I know. Conservatives are much more inclined to say, “I know that you want to create a better place. However, your policies are naive, they don’t work in the real world and they actually have the opposite effect of your intended goals.” Remember when liberals used to pride themselves on questioning authority? Now it’s up to conservatives and libertarians; the Progressive college students soak up everything they’re told and liberal Hollywood stars blindly follow Barack Obama off a financial cliff.
Anyway, God bless you Robert Downey Jr. You’re one hell of an actor. See you opening night.