Tuesday, 1 April 2014

TV Tropes - common representations

The TVTropes.com website (a Wiki) has its issues, and its judgements can be questioned, but it is a useful resource for getting your head round recurring ways in which certain character types are represented. NB: the language can be a little blunt at times, but I think the lack of PC'ness (political correctness) is acceptable given that the site is largely EXPOSING the prejudice and stereotyping of much of our TV.

You can see pictured some of the headings for tropes they have linked with the theme of disability; sample entry (for 'Disabled Means Helpless'):
Disabled Means Helpless

Spagna (cutting Pelswick's food): There! All done!
Pelswick: Thanks for doing that, but it's my legs that don't work, not my teeth.
Pelswick, "Hear No Evil, P.C. No Evil"
When some people meet a person with a disability, they automatically assume that the individual is totally incapable of looking after themselves, and treat them as such. Most egregiously, some people even assume that having one disability equals having every disability! These people are the ones who insist on SHOUTING AT THE BLIND, assuming they can't hear, either. These patronizing attitudes often create resentment on the part of people with disabilities. In fiction, they have little problem telling the offender exactly that. Learning this is not true is often the point of a Very Special Episode. Contrast this trope to the Handicapped Badass, who everyone can instantly tell is not to be messed with.

I'm not familiar with that show, but the style of humour is reminiscent of the 1989 Wilder/Pryor vehicle, See No Evil, Hear No Evil - trailer below; you can watch a typical clip here, but note that it contains some strong language.

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