Jan 302022

This is “Surface Pressure,” Luisa’s song in Encanto.

I’ve seen a lot of takes that Luisa is problematic (or “bullshit”) because she’s a female character with typical male problems.* These mostly come from more traditionally-mind men. They complain that it’s a role-subversion trope that doesn’t make sense because ‘it’s about gender-noncomformity, and the charecter is a female that is uncomfortable conforming to male gender roles, which is dumb.’


This criticism is idiotic. On the surface level, it’s stupid because Luisa’s problems aren’t sex-exclusive. There are women that have exactly these issues. Sure, they’re rare in comparison to men, who have this issue a lot. So what? That anyone can have exactly these problems and this response is a given, and trying to claim otherwise makes one look like a prancing clown.

But, more importantly….

It’s the stupidest fucking move anyone could make if they want to increase sympathy for men with these problems! Which (I assume) is a thing that such men actually do want. I know I do.

One of the major advantages of SF/F, and the reason I love the genre, is that it allows reality warping in a way that lets people sympathize with The Other in a very personal way. All those sexist Woke fucks that drink #MaleTears and laugh about #ManPain will never, in a million years, watch a movie like Logan and understand the reason it resonates with men. They will NEVER see a male character under cracking weight and see anything but an object to be mocked.

BUT they will watch Luisa and understand her pain instinctively. And since it IS the stereotypical male burden, that brings them closer to actually understanding what the opposite sex often feels. Because they saw it in a way that they can relate to. It got in under their defenses exactly because she IS female. Next time they go to lol at #ManPain, maybe someone within the group will think (or even say!) “Well, ya know, this is a lot like what Luisa was being destroyed by. I guess it could suck a bit, right?”

That’s another step on the road to reconciliation, which is what will ruin the Wokes. Hand-delivered to us by freakin’ Disney, an unstoppable world-spanning entertainment juggernaught. You’re going to take a gift like this and spit on it, because… why? It’s not for you? That’s the whole point. To talk to the other side, you have to make art that’s for them. Be happy we’ve received the Hero We Need and stop sabotaging yourself.

*I delayed getting into this, because I haven’t yet seen the movie, and I don’t think people should have takes about art they haven’t actually watched/read/consumed. That’s exactly what everyone that cancels anything does. 99%+ of them have never experienced that which they want to censor. But I was convinced by a couple people that this song, in isolation, is the equivilent of an aria, and thus can be consumed and critiqued on its own merits without needing the full context of the rest of the movie. So…. here I go.

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