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Thursday, February 20, 2020 

Screen Rant proves the left really does tolerate "toxic masculinity"

I'm starting to get really repulsed by Screen Rant, whose writers just turned to sugarcoating one of DC's most offensive moments of the mid-2000s, Identity Crisis, as they talk about the Flash TV show's 6th season, and a "nod" it makes to a most alarmingly sexist, belittling story that couldn't be written in the post-Harvey Weinstein era without drawing much more attention for the wrong reasons:
The latest episode of The Flash introduced the character of Sue Dearbon and made reference to her infamous death in the pages of DC Comics. While it might seem counter-intuitive to pay homage to a character's death in their first appearance in an Arrowverse adaptation, "A Girl Named Sue" was clever in how it made reference to DC Comics' Identity Crisis.
Really? How does it help to allude to a story that's bound to make sensible viewers feel uneasy if they know it minimizes sexual assault? Something that goes curiously unmentioned here, and the word "rape" doesn't appear in the text either. Take, for example, the next paragraph:
Sue Dearbon was married to Ralph Dibny (aka the world-famous Elongated Man) in her first appearance in the comics in The Flash #119 in 1961. The daring debutante was never given much background but proved to be the perfect partner in crime-fighting to the Ductile Detective and she became a member of the Justice League on her own merits. Despite partnering up with Ralph for several decades across a number of series, Sue is still best known to casual comic book readers as the victim whose violent death was the main mystery of the best-selling graphic novel Identity Crisis.
She's known only for dying, but not for being anally raped by Dr. Light? We must really be missing something here. Just why doesn't that filthy scene in the 2nd issue warrant mention? Or how the miniseries' POV was 99.9 percent masculine? The writer of this slop must be trying to deceive people, and trick them into buying the worst equivalent of spam in print. It gets worse:
The stunning twist of Identity Crisis was that Sue's death was an accident, facilitated as part of an insane plan by The Atom's ex-wife Jean Loring to win back Ray Palmer's heart by convincing him and the rest of the superhero community that a new villain was targeting their loved ones. What was meant to be a simple assault to scare Sue led to her death and Jean attempting to cover her tracks by horrifically burning Sue's body. The search for Sue's killers resulted in a wild goose chase, which exposed the dark secrets of the Justice League and their fears that Sue's death was an act of retaliation by the villain Dr. Light.
And that doesn't sound shoddy or even remotely stupid to the basket case who wrote this? No questions even raised about why we're supposed to fully embrace a plot where a co-star who's supposed to be on the side of the good guys turns out to be a mental case, and why we're supposed to view a story where it winds up looking like a tempest in a teapot. And, no mention of Deathstroke actually defending Dr. Light from the Justice League using obnoxious examples of violence to fell them. That SR's defending the repugnant tale is very sick.
"A Girl Named Sue," paid homage to this by introducing a new nemesis for Sue Dearbon; John Lorning. Season 6 of The Flash saw Ralph Dibny hired by Sue's parents to find their missing daughter, chasing reports of her activities around the globe. Ralph finally caught up to Sue in the latest episode of The Flash, learning that the heiress had gone on the run after she discovered that her latest boyfriend, John Loring, was secretly a weapons dealer of ill-repute. Sue recruited Ralph to help protect her from Loring, whom she said had been trying to kill her since she accidentally uncovered the truth about how he made his money.

Changing Jean Loring to John Loring was necessary given the way the early Arrowverse series made use of DC Comics' characters. It would be quite impossible to completely recreate Identity Crisis in the Arrowverse, given that Ray Palmer is quite happily dating Nora Darhk in Legends of Tomorrow and was never involved with a Jean Loring. There is a Jean Loring in the Arrowverse, but she was the Queen Family lawyer and an old friend of Moira Queen, who was last seen handling Oliver Queen's defense on charges of vigilantism during season 6 of Arrow. That's good news for fans of Ralph and Sue, who were hoping to see more of the power couple together in future episodes of The Flash.
I'm not impressed with this dumb gender-swap alteration, which only rubs more salt in. If the politics in the Arrowverse didn't make it so unappealing, this story approach alone would've. This article - along with the TV show's producers - have made me come away feeling more than a bit disgusted, to the point I decided to no longer give SR traffic if I can help it, and made use of a web archive link instead. They really crossed the line this time, and nobody asking for quality cinema and comics should rely on their horrendous writers for good commentary. If SR veers to the left of the spectrum, this can serve as a telling example of the left's double-standards on what they call "toxic masculinity".

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I dont think you can call it a dumb gender-swap alteration if there already is a female Jean Loring who is similar to the comic book character, or who at least shares the same profession.

The shame of identity crisis was not the fate of Sue in itself. Sometimes bad ugly things happen to good people, and it is no shame for fiction to reflect that. The series was appalling becuase it showed how poorly DC understood their own characters and what makes them special. The heart of the Elongated Man is the interplay and teamwork between himself and Sue; without that, he is just a second-rate Plastic Man, far less interesting that Reed or Jimmy O or Kamala or any of the other stretchy people.

Jean Loring was originally a proud skilled lawyer, turning down Ray's marriage proposals because she wanted to first establish her career, insisting that she would continue working even after she had any children. This was the early 60s, when being a career woman was grounds for giving the kids to the father in a divorce. Later on, she caused the breakup of her marriage to Ray when she had a dalliance with another man. Turning her into a neurotic madwoman who would kill to get her husband back showed a complete misunderstanding of, and mysoginistic cheapening of, the character.

Kudos to the Arrowverse for bringing back Jean as an intelligent woman and competent attorney, and reviving the Ralph-Sue romance. They are correcting the wrong of Identity Crisis, at least in the screen version.

Don't think the article in Scream Rant is approving of Identity Crisis; they are just acknowledging that it existed, without going into a lot of unnecessary and pointless virtue-signalling.

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