Album: Three Artists. One Song
it’s that old chestnut about deconstructing genre tropes: there’s a fine line between subtle subversion and straight repetition.
e.g. true detective tries to deconstruct the southern gothic trope of structural misogyny. but there’s still a female victim at the bottom of it: her naked body is still the text on which this story was first written, and on which it capitalises. this backward rusted country cages women as whores, clucking wives/mothers & (sexualised) victims. rust & marty are misogynists, so in framing events from their perspective the show replicates their misogyny. but it makes no effort to trouble it, to gesture toward aspects of women that don’t conform. the division of marty’s daughters into “innocent” and “whore”, while emblematic of the effects of marty’s misogyny, seems less a subversion and more a replication of the trope—the girls are pushed to the sidelines, and only introduced to complicate marty’s narrative.
i think sometimes true detective settles for lazy ironic framing of tropes rather than actual subversion / deconstruction. and irony grows quickly tired unless it’s doing something: there’s no use in showing cliches unless you’re going to transform or break them.
god i’ve stayed up all night arguing about identity politics with my marxist friend
why do i make the choices i make