Talk:Hollywood values

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I came to give this article a quick browse because I thought 40 celebrities that are Republicans may have made interesting extended reading to this idea. But I think the article is content free and a little sucky at the moment. "Hollywood Values" might be a big Conservapedia thing, but the whole "Hollywood Liberal" trope is much wider spread and deserves better attention than this. Scarlet A.pngsshole 14:30, 27 November 2010 (UTC)

  • Just gave the page a big sprinkling of the old Wiki Magic so that it's not a stub anymore. KevinR1990 (talk) 20:18, 6 August 2011 (UTC)

The Dark Knight[edit]

Yes, it was a good film, I'm just wondering where the pro-PATRIOT part comes in. Okay, so there's the big silly bit at the end with hacking into peoples phones (I'll only just let that bit of technological ass-pull-ery slide) but I think it was quite clear that it was morally wrong as Lucius Fox was very adamant on that - and let's face it, our moral sympathies are going to lie with Morgan Freeman. The Batman reboots are certainly far from politically liberal, and definitely lightyears away from the bleeding heart of it, but I didn't quite get the whole war-on-terror-is-good vibe from it. ADK...I'll exorcise your rain meter! 13:57, 10 October 2011 (UTC)

And then there's Bruce Wayne's parents at the beginning of the first film, if the "Gotham's been good to us, so we built this monorail to bring the city together" speech doesn't scream social contract I don't know what does. ADK...I'll model your boat! 13:59, 10 October 2011 (UTC)
EC -- Not a "War-on-Terror-is-good" vibe as much as a "sometimes-the-law-must-be-set-aside-when-it-gets-in-the-way-of-getting-the-bad-guy" vibe, perhaps? B♭maj7 (talk) "And when they ask me who is the president of Ubeki-beki-beki-beki-stan-stan I’m going to say, you know, I don’t know. Do you know?" 14:01, 10 October 2011 (UTC)
"Bring this city together," or "Imperialism through "development"" ? B♭maj7 (talk) "And when they ask me who is the president of Ubeki-beki-beki-beki-stan-stan I’m going to say, you know, I don’t know. Do you know?" 14:02, 10 October 2011 (UTC)
Yeah, see that. But surely any film that basically follows a crime-fighting super hero would have that vibe. The Batman stuff just takes it to a darker and edgier logical conclusion. I'm just wondering if this would be reading too much politics into something that's essential for the narrative and style to work. You can explore a theme, and even have your most sympathetic characters do some awful shit, without endorsing it. If we took a political reading of Star Wars, does Han shooting first endorse murder and oppose gun control? Not really, we're just establishing a character. Sure, you can read this sort of thing into, I'm just weary of ascribing political motives to films. ADK...I'll anglicise your elf! 14:11, 10 October 2011 (UTC)
On the other hand, it has been included on lists of conservative films now and again... Balaam (talk) 14:26, 10 October 2011 (UTC)
Perhaps, but is anyone else really bothered by citing lines from films or plot points as arguments? So what if Batman bucks the law to Get Things Done, that's fiction. It allows us to explore these ideas without necessarily agreeing to them, that's the point. ADK...I'll eat your rutabaga! 14:35, 10 October 2011 (UTC)
As the residing (post-)structuralist here is my take on this: there are, quite obviously, political concepts in political thought. One of those is the concept "It's-ok-to-break-the-law-in-order-to-defend-it" is rather common in neoconservatism and some old-school ways of thinking (it's the direct opposite of legalism and the Rechtsstaat-concept). Of course some type of characters, like superheroes in this case, have to have some of these concepts in mind, otherwise it would not be ok for them to act like they do. Because of this, some movies seem to be from a certain political viewpoint, but in fact some of it are just the characters other are there to avoid logic-clusterfucks. In much of American comics the rich guys (Bruce Wayne, Oliver Green, Tony Stark) are also the good guys. On the other hand there are some that go the other route (or went the other route and got changed later), for example, Superman was in his first comics simply a flat out socialist and Lex Luthor is pretty much the evil capitalist/rich dude a red main character deserves, later got changed to anti-hero status.
To make an example, one could argue that Sex and the City is socially conservative because three of the four main characters follow the old picture of what a woman should be like: wanting a family and children. At the same time one could make the argument that it is socially progressive because of it's depiction of free and open sex. In most TV-shows and movies the consept that a movie is always on some side of the political spectrum is bullshit, but there are also those others, some of those are indie, most of them are propaganda but almost never are those mainstream, because the people behind mainstream try to make money, not send a message (even if the people that make the movies want to, those who finance it have to for the lowest common denominator in a political arena). --ʤɱ digital native 15:34, 10 October 2011 (UTC)
Plus there's also the fact that in the comics, Batman is usually portrayed as an atheist (or at least as atheistic as one can be in a world where the supernatural does exist), doesn't kill, doesn't like guns, and is pro-science. So it's not that black and white. Superheroes were mainly meant as escapist fun anyway. They've just grown up a bit in recent years and explore all kinds of themes now. The characters may need to break the law sometimes, but that's to make entertaining stories, not to push a political ideology. Woodgod (talk) 11:40, 19 May 2012 (UTC)
While I have heard the argument that superheroes are "pushing some conservative agenda", I myself have often argued that the opposite is true. Though I can't speak for everyone, many comic book/superhero fans, to my understanding, tend to be very socially liberal - in many cases, this is because, due to our experiences being bullied for our "nerdy" interests, we can recognize an authoritarian asshole when we see one. Also, not only do most superhero stories promote values of generosity, humility, basic human decency, and helping those in need at no benefit to yourself - all things that are unheard of among the far right - but superhero stories also almost always portray conservative archetypes (e.g. fascist dictators, warmongering bigots, greedy billionaires, religious fundamentalists, and insane, fanatical cults) as the villains. Look, I know I'm generalizing here, but I, a staunch liberal, am frankly sick and tired of hearing moonbats like Bill Maher and the guy who directed Birdman accusing my favorite film genre of being authoritarian right-wing propaganda that encourages the toxic hatred and mindless insanity that led to Trump getting elected. (talk) 09:33, 27 July 2017 (UTC)
Yeah, it's mainly a matter of cherrypicking bits to fit into the intellectual stencil of a social narrative. This, this, this and this, look, I made right-wing! I mean with Batman you could just as easily argue that the message is that Bruce Wayne's wealth can't ultimately do anything to solve the problems his city faces and he has to fight with his brain and his fists on the level of any other man, and come to the exact opposite conclusion. Nog Bogmire (talk) 09:48, 27 July 2017 (UTC)
All things considered, accusing superheroes of promoting conservative values is really no different from Evangelical Christians accusing rock music of promoting devil worship. (talk) 17:11, 7 August 2017 (UTC)


Something mentioned only briefly in this article about Hollywood values is discrimination, but there is a huge, thriving culture of racial, sexual, ageist, and other avenues of discrimination in Hollywood producing, casting, hiring, etc. Especially race. To the point of lead characters of movies taking place in asia/asian settings being cast only for white leads. Anyone who watched the horrendous The Last Airbender movie can see this, and there's even a protest/information campaign dedicated to stamping out this kind of thing. While this isn't a 'conservative' value per se... it is a reflection of the actual values of Hollywood. Also, CP is racist, and this is racist, so why not? :| KnightOfTL;DR (talk) 00:59, 9 March 2012 (UTC)

Ever see the good ole' Charlie Chans and Mr. Wongs? ArchieGoodwin (talk) 01:01, 9 March 2012 (UTC)
A long, long tradition of racism and exclusion. And also a habit of 'racializing' random roles that don't actually add anything to the story, or alter the context, or even mean anything at all. Not to mention shoving a lot of non-white actors into villain or comic relief roles, because apparently non-whites are either threatening or hilarious. KnightOfTL;DR (talk) 01:39, 9 March 2012 (UTC)
But of course, this proves that the libruls are the real racists!
Okay, joking aside, this is a good avenue for discussion. This and other left-wing critiques of Hollywood (which could tie in nicely to discussions of it as a vehicle of cultural imperialism) could be used as a counterpoint to the conservative claim that Hollywood is a hotbed of leftist politics, and buttress the article's main contention that Hollywood's real politics are "whatever sells to the broadest audience." KevinR1990 (talk) 00:54, 22 July 2013 (UTC)

Transformers isn't that right-wing.[edit]

I know, I know. Mind-blowing. But here's the thing. The fourth film is basically a long screed against islamophobia and anti-immigration with explosions. Furthermore, the U.S military doesn't even show up. I'm no expert, but that really doesn't feel right-wing to me. Tfaddict (talk) 18:43, 10 December 2015 (UTC)

Historical and personal roots[edit]

I've often thought that the relative liberalism of actors as a class might have an historical basis: in the West, actors were often an officially-despised class. They were feared when peripatetic as they often were—they could leave debts and pregnancies behind—and even when not so were held to be fundamentally false in nature by virtue of their playing other people. Though I believe that this were never official Church teaching, burial in hallowed ground was sometimes denied them.

More recently, through the '30s actors experienced massive exploitation and control by the studios,You'll never work in this town again. being a very real and stringent sanction, and it was only with the rise of the S.A.G. that things got any better.

I've also thought that Hollywood performers become intensely aware, if they are not monsters of narcissism, that for every part there are at least a few who could be hired to play it with roughly equal facility, and so success and failure are not the well-deserved judgements on an individual for which many conservatives take them. This both removes a moral justification for "losers"' having extremely hard lives, and by making it plain to any actor that that group could include _them_, gives them incentive to want a world that treats non-winners Kindly.

The Superhero Section is Bullshit and Here's Why[edit]

This is probably the only time I've disagreed with something RW has had to say, and the Superhero section is just... frustratingly inaccurate for a number of reasons. Here's what I mean.

  • ASSERTION: "There's one man (and it's often a man) who possesses some form of moral, physical and/or biological superiority over the rest of his fellow men (so much for the equality of all men),"
    • COUNTERPOINT: So, just gonna ignore the existence and popularity of female superheroes, then? Also, Depicting characters as having strengths that others do not possess doesn't mean that you are against equality; RW repeatedly demonstrates the moral and intellectual superiority of people like Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren over Donald Trump and his cohorts, but nobody would accuse those articles of being against equality.
  • ASSERTION: "has been "chosen" by God a higher force, or is just filthy rich and highly dedicated (see, the 1% does care about us!),"
    • COUNTERPOINT: I shouldn't have to say this, but saying that not all rich people are evil does NOT make you a Wall Street shill. In superhero stories, billionaires who are good people are actually in the minority; most rich people in comics are evil and corrupt, and heroes tend to come from working-class backgrounds. The fact that a lot of superheroes are rich or tend to be connected to higher powers is not meant as a political commentary or value judgment, but as nothing more than an explanation for how they get their powers or can afford their high-tech gadgets.
  • ASSERTION: "acting outside legal channels to protect them (just like what the CIA and NSA are doing)"
    • COUNTERPOINT: So, acting outside and questioning the justice system makes you a conservative? That's odd to hear because, in real life, the USA's police, military, and intelligence agencies (such as the CIA and NSA, who are authorities in the government) have a well-documented history of corruption and authoritarianism, and when those issues come to light, it's always the GOP who jump in to defend those groups and accuse anyone who opposes them of hating America. Also, while superheroes technically work outside of the law, they always work with law enforcement to help them with problems too big for mundane police procedure to solve.
  • ASSERTION: "because it is right and proper and in line with "truth, justice and the American Way," often to a total lack of appreciation by those who they're trying to protect (just like those ACLU radicals who should just shut up about what the CIA and NSA are doing)."
    • COUNTERPOINT: Here's the thing. Unlike the CIA and NSA, superheroes do not kill massive populations of people in the hopes of taking out a single terrorist. They do not torture people. They do not keep suspects in secret prisons without trial. Most importantly, the threats they protect people from ARE REAL and weren't just fabricated to scare people into supporting them. Also, many of the enemies fought by superheroes are authoritarian government officials enact the exact same unjust cruelty seen in the War on Terror.
  • ASSERTION: "The villains are often unambiguously evil — morality is a matter of black and white (just like it should be)."
    • COUNTERPOINT: Black-and-white thinking is not exclusive to the right wing. The paragraph's previous assertion that all billionaires should be automatically treated as evil is evidence enough of that. Second, this is inaccurate because the character dynamics in superhero movies AREN'T black-and-white; the heroes are often given genuine flaws and are not the paragons of purity and perfection they're often treated as, while most villains tend to be given sympathetic backstories or motivations or are humanized through actions that prove they're not totally amoral. Those villains who are unambiguously evil -- as stated previously -- tend to be corrupt billionaires and warmongering dictators that are all too easy to compare to real-life conservative politicians.

In closing, I'd like to paraphrase Linkara: superheroes are often mistaken for promoting a "might makes right" mindset, which preaches the Social darwinist philosophy of strength equalling greatness, but that's not true. The idea that superhero stories push the "might FOR right" mindset, which dictates that we look up to people not because they have great power, but because they use that power selflessly: to protect and provide for the innocent instead of just fucking around with people for one's personal benefit. Characters who use their power selfishly or believe that their power makes them above everyone else are always portrayed as evil. RW is no stranger to commending real-life authority figures who use their power responsibly, so this statement should not be controversial. Finally, I would like to point out that, for decades, superhero stories have been firmly and explicitly to the left on social issues such as race, immigration, and LGBT acceptance -- and while objectification of women is still a problem, feminist superhero stories are becoming increasingly more popular with characters like Wonder Woman and Captain Marvel's cinematic debuts. This probably accounts for why superhero fiction is so overwhelmingly popular among the American left (and especially on places like Tumblr) while the alt-right and MAGA crowd froth with rage whenever a new superhero movie comes out and has a diverse cast. NotYourAverageBoN (talk) 19:33, 13 January 2020 (UTC)