Everyone wants their time on their soapbox, and going viral with some outlandish comment à la Kanye West seems like the most effective way to do it these days. Right? Wrong. Kristen Wiig reflected on and responded to criticisms of the all-female Ghostbusters, and while she keeps her shit intact with a low-key response, her laid-back thoughtfulness is what will really make you question things.
When I first read her response in the LA Times, I admit she was so chill, I almost thought she was too chill. She said the fact that their was controversy over a female-driven cast in the reboot was “surprising,” “not nice,” and didn’t make her “mad,” just “really bummed [her] out.”
I’m sitting here thinking: Really? That’s it? As a woman who’s made a living in comedy, why isn’t she going off the handle? Why isn’t she more offended? Or flat-out pissed?
I think the Internet has made me too accustomed to the aggressive, feminist rant. And this comes from a feminist.
I continue, and it’s Kristen’s reflective, thoughtful words that really got me. I could almost hear her genuine discouragement while reading. “I think the fact that people keep asking [if women are funny] implies that it’s something we need to explain or defend,” she said. “If [people] would watch movies or look at comedy and see how many talented, funny women are out there and have been since the beginning of time, people would stop asking that. The other side of it is we’re still not there as far as opportunities. But, people are doing the work.”
Hearing her perspective on the state of things is sad and unfortunate. Now you’ll find yourself thinking about the impact women have had in comedy throughout history, and wonder why they don’t get more credit for it while they fight as hard as they do for these roles, even today. I know I have been since I read the interview. Thoughts were provoked because I didn’t automatically dismiss an obnoxious rant or a stealing of the mic. Who knew?