Thursday, August 20, 2009

Tyler Perry is a douchebag

I despise Tyler Perry. My review of his "The Family that Preys," pretty much summarizes why:

Yet one more in the long line of Tyler Perry movies where the smart, ambitious professional black woman is taken down a peg…cause how dare she be all uppity with her school learnin’. If I ever meet that man in real life I am sticking my uppity professional black woman foot up his ass. Okay, this one I did to myself. I mean, if I didn’t learn after “Daddy’s Girls” I will NEVER learn.

In that particular film, brought to you by a man who clearly HATES black women with graduate school degrees, one of the women, a businesswoman of some kind, has saved up her earnings from the last 7 years at her job and plans to leave her husband and make a new life with her lover and her son. The husband finds the bank account with the money, withdraws it all and starts a construction business with it. At the end of the movie, the lover leaves the woman, the husband divorces her and she and her son end up living in a motel. The ex husband comes by to drop off her things and on his way out hands her a couple of hundred dollars "for you and Ben," or whatever the child's name was. We are supposed to believe this is her comeuppance. That's what she gets for cheating! That whore! DUDE.
In Daddy's Little Girls? Same thing. The female lawyer is clearly a stuck up BITCH because she doesn't want to settle down with a mechanic, who has served time for rape, and has three children. Who does that whore think she is? I'm not saying there's anything wrong with a lawyer marrying an ex-convict mechanic with three children; lord knows, if Zac Ephron was an ex-con mechanic with three children, I would marry him in a heartbeat. Hell, if Zac Ephron was a serial murder on death row with fourteen children, I would marry him. Not in a heartbeat though, I would have to think about it for a few days, it's probably hard to get to death row from Brooklyn. However, Perry's movies strongly suggest that a single black woman needs to settle down with whatever single black man there is around AND MAKE THAT MAN HAPPY. And then he adds a "you stupid bitch," and slaps her hard on the face for emphasis.
I always try to support black artists in film and television. I will rent their movies and watch shows with black cast members. However, I don't have very many black people in my daily circle, so I never really had a sense of how other black people felt about Tyler Perry. Happily, through twitter, I've been conversing (and eavesdropping) on other black women who feel the way I do.

Each of his films advances nearly the same message to his audience (which is overwhelmingly African-American, female, devoutly Christian and over 30). Be demure. Be strong but not too strong. Too much ambition is a detriment to your ability to find a partner and spiritual health. Female beauty can be dangerous. Let a man be a "man." ... How can black women achieve equity in media ownership, images and leadership if they're always portrayed as stereotypes? Mr. Perry, you owe your audience something better.

That was from a "The Nation" piece linked by Rana.

And that's just one of the voices who didn't use a string of profanity laden insults. You know, like I would. I won't watch Perry's films anymore. I wish high profile black actresses wouldn't star in them anymore. But I also realize there aren't many other vehicles out there for them.

Zac Ephron forever.


Alceste said...

He may be a douchebag, but he's a very popular one. Do you think his rather astounding success (6th highest paid entertainer in 2008 according to Forbes) is because he is the only African-American director who actually gets to put out movies in wide release, or does most of his target audience (which presumably excludes educated women and most educated men) not care if the smart woman gets her comeuppance??

Dawn Summers said...

I think it's a combination of the first thing you said (if you're trying to see black films, good luck having it NOT involve Tyler Perry) and the second thing which is that the audience is usually NOT graduate school degree holders, who may actually harbor animosity toward those "learned negroes." Said, but true. #pout

Astin said...

What if Zac Efron was cast in a Tyler Perry movie? Would you see it then? What if he was in blackface and Madea-like prosthetics?