I want to applaud Splitsider and the site’s lead writer, Megh Wright, for fighting the good fight for the past several months against the ongoing sexism at Adult Swim, as well as its apparent support for the racism and misogyny masquerading as code words of the “alt-right.”
Wright’s extensive reporting on Adult Swim this year…
- 47 Men, 0 Women: Why Doesn’t Adult Swim Order Shows from Female Creators?
- Adult Swim’s Mike Lazzo Takes to Reddit to Defend Lack of Female Creators
…has prompted one of the cable channel’s late-night stars, Brett Gelman, to break ranks.
Gelman told his fans and followers Monday on Twitter about deciding to no longer work with Adult Swim, citing these reports. He further told Wright last night: “Well, to me it didn’t even really feel like a stand. I mean, I had already decided to do that, and once I’d read those articles, I just couldn’t see how I could continue to work with the company when those were their policies. And how it was defended — that is what I had a real problem with, but also the greenlight of Million Dollar Extreme and allowing that on their network. And then the election happened and I was really angry with social media and thought it was pacifying us, our side, on these matters. A fan of mine called me out on my hypocrisy and said “You’re working for a company that does this — that has these policies of greenlighting a white supremacist sketch show and not having any women showrunners.” I responded to him by saying “No I’m not.” So I decided to make it public. A lot of people are probably gonna think that this is bullshit, but I honestly didn’t think that people were tracking what I say on there. I always think it’s falling on deaf ears, so I really did not assume that it would get this type of reaction. But I’m very glad that it did.”
When his Dinner in America special premiered this June on Adult Swim, Gelman wanted to make sure people weren’t confused that he was as racist as his character seemingly was on TV. “Our fear is that people will think we’re making fun of race, that people won’t get that my racist character in this is a villain and not somebody to be liked. My character is a metaphor for white liberal racism,” he told Splitsider then.
On Tuesday, Gelman went even further, saying it’s upon straight white men — the people with power and privilege — to take action to help others.
We can talk a good game, but can we walk the walk? Who’ll follow Gelman’s lead on this.
I certainly hope to use whatever power and privilege I have with this platform to advance the efforts of others who deserve to be heard, regardless of their race, gender, ethnicity, class or proximity to me. I hope you’ll do likewise. And I hope you’ll continue to keep me honest on that, too. Thanks.