Have you any thoughts regarding Moffat and ableism?
asked by Anonymous
Oh, I absolutely think Moffat is ableist. [TW for ableism]
First off, his constant use of ‘idiot’ or ‘mad/crazy’ in his shows come off as ableist. Here’s an account of how ‘idiot’ is ableist and he uses that line all the time in Sherlock (‘Don’t worry, practically everyone is [an idiot].’). Obviously it’s used to refer to someone as being lower in intelligence (than Sherlock in particular), but the article accounts for how it’s used in the medical community for someone who is severely mentally handicapped and could be akin to ‘retarded’ in usage. The blog I linked also has an article on ‘crazy’ which is similar to ‘mad’. Mad man with a box anyone? It’s often used as a slur for someone who acts out of the norm or does outrageous things - but it can be harmful for people with actual mental disabilities or conditions. Moffat tends to call his characters ‘broken’, ‘slightly mad’, or other variations and he never actually touches on mental disabilities in these characters.
Also, there are several articles discussing Moffat ‘defending’ himself against his critics - which is to say, insulting them:
Now, I love using the word ‘stupid’ and it’s not ableist in and of itself, but calling people who don’t understand your show ‘stupid’? Um, I have a bit of an issue with that, especially when they’re saying his latest seasons are too complex and he’s barking back with ‘If you don’t understand, then you’re stupid!’ He doesn’t seem to notice that Doctor Who is still a children’s show and should be aimed at 12 year olds and younger while still putting in enough plot twists for an adult to enjoy. He won’t take criticism and make his storylines more coherent and consistent because he feels he’s too clever for that.
“We make no apology. Don’t expect to do the ironing; sit down, pay attention and think about it. Audiences like complexity. They follow intricately plotted soap operas all the time. It depresses me when people say, ‘It’s all far too clever.’”
Yes, Moffat. Tell me more about how that ‘depresses’ you. Are you taking medication for your chemical imbalances because people don’t find your works enjoyable? Believe me, I have ‘thought about it’ and I’ve come to conclusion that you’re taking a shit, turning around to look at it and going ‘Wow! I’m brilliant!’ before feeding it to the masses and expecting them to enjoy it without question.
I also happened to stumble across this whilst on his twitter:
[Twitter screencap of a conversation between a user and Steven Moffat. User tweets Moffat with ‘erm….. it best had didn’t do a good job last half of doctor who same storyline same [characters]’ with some misspellings and poor grammar to which Moffat responds with ‘…. do I get a prize if I can arrange those words into a sentence?’. User replies ‘haha your in [characters] a Count down [alien] lol Steven [you’re a good writer] I just didn’t think a lot to s6 part2’ to which Moffat responds with ‘Oh, for goodness sake, run it through a spell-checker. That’s just some letters.’]
Of course, the person later revealed to Moffat that they were dyslexic - Moffat never replied back. He does this all the time. If you can’t understand the person, simply don’t respond. It’s not that hard. Many of his fans are not native English speakers so what does he get out of picking apart their language? I once tweeted him with one misspelled word, but it was obvious what I was trying to say. Instead of answering my question, he tweeted me back with the word I misspelled, acting as if I offended him for daring to misspell a word on twitter. Of course, like what happened with Hallor, a lot of Moffat’s fans started attacking this person and made fun of them for their spelling. This isn’t right and is completely Moffat’s fault.