TW for sexual assault before I start, mind.
Rewatching several of Gary Kendal’s scenes in the show, it hits me that In The Flesh has managed to pull off showing a character who is sexually threatening to those they have power over without putting any rape threats or scenes of sexual assault on screen.
I don’t think it’s coincidence that the scene where Gary forces Amy to apply makeup and the scene where he catches Kieren trying to escape and ties him up both take place in bedrooms. Gary enjoys his power over PDS sufferers - quite happy to assault Kieren by smearing the makeup that helps him fit in while they’re both in a public place (hell, at Kieren’s workplace, and this “outing” in public has all sorts of nasty little -phobic connotations) - and most blatantly in the sequence with Freddie.
"You’d be amazed what I can do to your sort. And what you can do sod all about."
The entirety of the lead-up to Gary forcing Kieren to go rabid is filmed as an assault, from Kieren being pinned to a bed and forcefully tied up, to being thrown in the back of a truck while gagged, to being force-fed mind-altering drugs (with his clothing dragged out of place to allow it). All of it has connotations that I believe the script is aware of.
Kieren does his best to fend Gary off. Not allowing him to get to the back of his neck, but Gary’s too strong.
This is why to me, in ways, Gary is the scariest villain on the show. He can actually be pleasant to the people he considers his friends or his peers - he isn’t constantly abrasive, and he isn’t on a religious crusade - but when he is in a situation that allows him power over others, he abuses it. It’s creepy and frightening and all too real.
And this is why Jem’s decision to support Kieren at the end, and the particular words she uses to do it, are so very, very important.
"We broke up. I broke up with him. If it’s his word against yours. I choose yours."
His word against yours. It’s a phrase we’ve heard in one form or another all too often.
And Jem sides with the victim.
If I knew nothing else about this show, I’d love her just for that. But I do know something else about the show, and as such, not only do I love her, but I love the show for managing to touch on such a horrendous subject in a way that never, ever blames the victim.
Complimenting my friends like
the struggle of being a woman of color in the media
LISTEN THIS IS IMPORTANT BECAUSE THE ARTICLE IS ABOUT WOMEN IN TV AND THESE FUCKERS MADE MINDY KALING’S COVER BLACK AND WHITE THEY WHITEWASHED A BROWN GIRL IM SO TICKED
People don’t appreciate enough that Hogwarts had a giant squid in the lake. Not another magical beast. Not even a normal squid with magical properties. They just had a straight up giant squid in the lake and everyone was cool about it.
How did it even get there
Most people give the homeless change or leftovers, Mark Bustos is cutting their hair
For the past few months, New York City hairstylist Mark Bustos — who normally spends his days working at an upscale salon — has been volunteering on his days off to offer haircuts to homeless people he sees on the street. With a simple phrase, “I want to do something nice for you today,” he has been helping people get a fresh, uplifting makeover.
For people who have been trapped in a cycle of poverty, unemployment and homelessness, the makeover can also serve a useful function: looking presentable for a job.
He is an activator. Find your lane of productive activism and rock out on it no matter what it is. As long as it’s a shift for positive changes big and or small. Whether it’s assisting on teaching and spreading the good knowledge on somethings that someone may not have been hipped to. Or just walking someone across the street helping with groceries. Or just being a considerate neighbor and making sure folks are sincerely alright in general.
These are actions of Activators which results in action within activism of not just being a good person but doing good shit. .
Good things happen everyday in every way. Don’t discount anyone’s Activator Spirit.