The Martin Freeman interview with racist and homophobic comments is here. (Mod note: I added highlights below)
“When I moved up here this woman I know said, ‘Ooh! There are a lot of whiteys up there’, and I said, ‘I love white people; I’ve no problem with them at all.”
The idea was that I was going to complain because there weren’t enough blues dances out here; not enough ragga around. But I’m not bothered by it.
“Multiculturalism hasn’t and doesn’t help, because rightly or wrongly it polarises people so much,” he continues.
“Racism is one thing ? and I don’t agree with that in any form ? but noticing that there are differences is normal and fine and to be encouraged.
“We’ve reached a state now where it’s, ‘You shouldn’t notice. Why are you noticing he’s got a bomb and has a beard and is Muslim and wants to kill your family?”
“There is no country in the world like this. If all of a sudden all the traffic wardens in Ghana were Welsh, they’d really notice and might not love it? We give ourselves a hard time in this country in a sort of mea culpa way. But if we were that racist, people wouldn’t come. Very simple.”
(Later in the article)
He hasn’t always been a mod purist. “I did have a hip-hop period,” he admits. “I dressed a bit like that in 1990, but after a while I thought, ‘Nah, back to the white Levi’s.’
“I really liked hip-hop until the gangsta rap took over. I come from a time when not every rap record was ‘nigga’ this and ‘nigga’ that; an earlier socially and morally conscious hip-hop sensibility, when it was, ‘Don’t call people nigga’.”
“But now it’s nigga, nigga, nigga, and it’s not funny or interesting politically, artistically or socially. I really don’t like it.”
At this point the conversation switches to the youth of today.
“Talking of which… ‘The funny thing about the acting business is that there are more poofs in it than you can have hot dinners thrown at you,’” he says.
“But no one is out. It’s not so bad here, but in Hollywood ? Jesus Christ. Why don’t they just admit it? No one cares if they’re gay or not. I certainly don’t.
In this so-called liberal industry, no one has the guts to come out because of “the box office”, but someone has to be the first in the firing line.
“Without the suffragettes a lot of women would have thought, ‘Why should we have the vote?’ And I think that the same argument exists today. People should stand up and be counted.”
People were praising his comments about how closeted gay actors should come out (because allegedly it shows how accepting he is?) but as a straight man he really should not be 1. using homophobic slurs or 2. trying to dictate how and when LGBT people come out.
People also tried to claim that because it’s the Daily Mail it must be out of context, but there is no other context for statements like “We’ve reached a state now where it’s, ‘You shouldn’t notice. Why are you noticing he’s got a bomb and has a beard and is Muslim and wants to kill your family?’”
Mod note: That wasn’t Pulitzer Prize-winning journalism/writing by any means, but REGARDLESS, what a fucking mess. Seriously, wtf?
I tried to like you, Marty. I tried.
But what the fuck is this shit? Why are you okay with tossing “nigga” around like it’s 1843, and telling Black folks what’s okay to do in/with their own culture? How hard is it to censor yourself on something that has nothing to do with you?
Really. Would it really have been so hard to just say, “I used to like hip-hop until it got a little too intense for my taste.” Is it seriously necessary to go to those extremes? I mean, that’s five fucking times in 2 sentences.
FIVE FUCKING TIMES
And “multiculturalism doesn’t help”… doesn’t help who? The people whose culture is dominant worldwide? No shit. I guess when you’re part of that culture, it’s easy to believe that it doesn’t work. After all, you’re not part of the culture that has to assimilate and give up trying to connect to where they come from. You’re part of the culture that invades and takes over and wrecks everybody’s shit and wonders why they’re mad later on.
I tried, man. I tried.
But fuck this guy.
I will still enjoy the characters he plays, but the next person who crosses my dash talking about how the actor is such a great guy is getting blocked.
Martin, what the fuck? What the actual fuck?
WOW. Okay then… I may have to skip the Hobbit. This is sooo typical liberal nonsense where he’s parroting some things he heard about diversity from somewhere but this his privileged bullshit kicks in and just… gah.
1) This is why I wish celebrities would stand there and look pretty and not open their mouths.
2) Why I hate the whole cult of celebrity. Especially on Tumblr. OMG WHAT IS YOUR FACE and all that bullshit. You are going to worship this person because of a role they played that you liked. You’re going to follow everything they do, not because you admire their work as an actor, but because you’ve elevated them to some status they can’t possibly hope to fulfill. And then… when they say or do indefensible things, you will blindly defend them, getting angry and hateful and violent with anyone who stands up and say… no, what he/she said/did is NOT ok.
3) Why? Because they’re pretty. If some random asshole said the same exact things on Tumblr, the social justice bloggers would annihilate him in five minutes and we would all move on with our lives. But since they’re pretty, and played that one character we really connected with that one time, they get a free pass on life. Because they’re famous and cool and important, and therefore nothing they do can be wrong—or at least it’s excusable and defendable… even when it’s really not.
4) BUT OMG HE IS PERFECT AND HIS FACE IS PERFECT AND HE IS SO GORGEOUS AND HIS WIFE IS PERFECT AND HIS KIDS ARE PERFECT, WHAT IS LIFE. *sigh* No. He’s not. He’s a person. And there’re decent people and there’re shitty people and there’re nice people and there’re people who don’t really have the comprehension skills to do more than parrot back a series of opinions that sound vaguely right to them about society.
5) I appreciate his work. Before you start flaming me, don’t say I am some kind of hater or that I hate the fandom or I hate… whatever. In fact, I have enjoyed his work in every movie I’ve ever seen him in. Largely, he was the best thing in HHGTTG. He makes it bearable to watch despite the presence of She Who Must Not Be Named. Wild Target was fucking hysterical on so many levels. It’s possible no one will appreciate his John Watson as much as I do. That said… that’s his work. That’s his JOB. He gets up, he goes there, and he does it, and he gets paid for it. He’s not fucking magic because he’s an actor. His opinion is not automatically more valuable, or more precious, or more defendable… or even more EXCUSABLE because you have decided to worship his pretty face, and have decided that everything he does MUST be perfect because of some roles he’s played.
AGRHHHH. LIFE. THINGS.
Everything above is true.
Every now and then I put a toe into the kind of headspace where I could totally obsess over an actor or actress I really love or crush on because of a movie or TV show. I read a few interviews or I look for some pictures, but it never lasts long. Mainly because I just don’t have time to obsess over celebrities. Also because they so often disappoint for some reason.
I could have gone my whole life not knowing that Martin Freeman has these super problematic thoughts. Now whenever I see him in a show or in a movie I’ll just be thinking: he’s super gross. I don’t want to be thinking or caring about that. But everywhere celebs go there’s someone sticking a recording device at them and asking them questions and then we get the mess above.
And the pattern spastasmagoaria spelled out happens and all the fangirls are there to whine “you took him out of context!” or “That’s not what he meant!” or “what he said isn’t so bad because one time I was bullied by one person and that means racism doesn’t exist” or any other stupid and silly thing they do. Look at what happens any time someone vaguely criticizes Michael Fassbender. Even intelligent, feminist women of my acquaintance have said to me “Oh, but she accused another boyfriend of something so she can’t be trusted” and I’m just like: all done with you fangirls. All done.
I think the overarching problem is that fandom as a culture does not help people to step the fuck back and have some damn perspective about these things. It’s why we get those SPN freaks having a goddamn meltdown because the wife of whoever got pregnant and it destroyed their carefully constructed fantasy about the actors gay sex lives. It’s why there’s a fucking Hiddlesworth tag on Tumblr filled with RPF that I’m convinced some people actually believe in like whoa.
Fandom. We need to do better.
And what I mean by that is all of you out there who DO have perspective and are NOT wildly and blindly obsessed need to come collect your cousins. Especially when they rear their heads to defend this kind of shit up here coming out of Freeman’s mouth.
Yes. I don’t understand large swaths of things that go on in SPN fandom… and this is STARTING to get like that. I mean, I have an unhealthy obsession with Sherlock. My husband respectfully requests that I get a life and go play Mass Effect or something. But… the weird thing that gets built up around the ACTORS is the thing I cannot fathom. People want to be their friend and be them, and know everything about them… and basically behave as if they can do no wrong.
Also, I am not coming to get my cousins because I was born in a cabbage patch. On mars. I am not related to the vast majority of fandom. Not because I am so awesome, but, well…
All right, so Martin Freeman is an idiot. Case closed. I wasn’t going to watch Hobbit anyway, so no harm done.