Television and stereotypes

It’s purely coincidence that Transatlantic Blonde mentioned Mickey Mouse Clubhouse when I was already planning to rant about it for today’s Feminist Friday. I had no idea she would! But as it happens, I’ve been steaming about it for a few days.

It’s just one little scene in one little episode, but I can’t seem to stop thinking about it. The gang is getting on a boat. Mickey hops on. Pete offers his hand to Minnie and Daisy. Then Donald reaches for Pete’s hand, and Pete gives Donald a dirty look. There’s enough pause and sound effects and whatnot to make it clear that this is supposed to be a joke.

Seriously? In 2011, people still make this junk? What is so ridiculous about a man needing or wanting help onto a boat? Do we seriously need to teach our kids that women need help onto boats but men can’t possibly need help onto boats? It really baffles me that enough people involved in the production of this cartoon think this is a valid use of their animation time. It isn’t as if Donald is known as a very physically strong character, and that’s what made it funny. The only context I can come up with is men vs. women.

2 thoughts on “Television and stereotypes

  1. We refer to him as “that asshole Pete” in my house so it doesn’t surprise me. It’s little things like that and the female characters adherence to gender stereotypes which are frustrating because otherwise it is a really cute show. It’s not overtly or overly sexist but it’s not perfect either.

  2. It’s these subtle moments that make you think. I guess the saving grace is that the hone environment, not what they see on telly that is most important.

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