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July 29 2011

Seth Green saves the male perspective at Comic-Con's Oh, You Sexy Geek Panel. Seth Green stepped up and provided some 15 minutes of intelligent, thoughtful viewpoint (making up for the actual male panelist, about whom some controversy is swirling). Sadly, there is no video (yet).

While Seth Green is not the main crux of this panel, I thought it would be interesting to explore the themes through the blogs I am linking, which describe their perspectives of what happened. Katrina Hill, the moderator of the panel, began following me on Twitter a couple of days ago which led me to thinking about what I saw and experienced, being an audience member. Her Twitter page led me to Ink-Stained Amazon (Jennifer Stuller, whose blog I used as the main link). Katrina's follow-up blog.

Specifics of Seth's comments from ifanboy:

In the most controversial moment of the panel, Chris Gore of G4TV's Attack of the Show walked into the room 40 minutes late and made a couple very off-color, sexist jokes. While people are rightfully up-in-arms about this, it shouldnít ruin what was otherwise a fantastic panel. Gore had nothing else to contribute and was almost immediately upstaged by a surprisingly eloquent Seth Green. If Gore didnít have enough respect for the panelists to show up on time, then I believe he shouldnít get any attention for his actions at that panel. Move along, people, nothing to see here...

Back to Seth Green. I really canít say enough how impressed I was with his comments. After half raising his hand a dozen times, Kat called on him to share what was quite visibly on his mind. Green shared his thoughts on geek culture and how it can, at times, be very excluding. We live in a time where the Kardashians are wearing Transformers underroos, and while itís tough seeing people who havenít (or arenít) as invested as we fellow geeks are, itís no reason to be so dismissive of them - regardless of gender. He suggested geek culture embrace these newer nerds and use the opportunity to spread the word about the things theyíre so passionate about. My favorite quote of his was, "I don't feel like you can be pandering if you're sincere." And I donít think anyone should make judgements on a personís sincerity without knowing them.

I have read there are remarks on the 'Net suggesting Seth's impromptu appearance was the best thing about the panel. I wouldn't go that far, but kudos to our sensitive, intelligent Whedon actor for stating his opinions. It helped take the bad taste out of what had previously occurred.
Will not. Get drawn into this. In yet another place. Heh.
Another perspective and one more plug for what Seth talked about (totally relevant to the panel) from FeministFatale

The only good moment during the entire hour, was when the moderator called out Seth Green, who was looking disappointed with the discussion, sitting in the front row of the audience. Katrina Hill asked if he wanted to contribute or share his thoughts, and he unexpectedly took the mic for about fifteen minutes. As Hill explained to the audience what the audience would know him from (Robot Chicken), Jennifer Stuller mentioned that she had seen him promoting media literacy for the Girl Scouts. Seth responded that he felt media literacy is incredibly important in the ever-increasing, constantly-unavoidable, media saturated world we live in. He described how celebrities hold tons of influence over decisions people make, whether itís over what product to buy or what sources can and should be trusted, and that certainly shouldnít be the case. Green said that the media promotes a lot of ďpoisonĒ and that girls, kids, and even adults need to know how to keep that poison from infiltrating the way you think, make decisions, and live.

When I returned from Comic-Con, one of the first things I did was go in search of that video. It is amazing and here it is:

Watch What you Watch

ETA: From angelheaded hipster

Panel now being saved by Seth Green, speaking from the floor.

Seth: I think it's really a matter of authenticity, not just a matter of sexuality. It is kind of that debate, you can't have this because you haven't liked it as long as me. So, why perpetuate those stereotypes (in Made Men)? Why not band together and make more awesome things? Just one more thing - when you talk about the dearth of sexy costumes that have cloth. I think Willow is sexy in a sweater and skirt, but I also think Mystique is sexy. Why does it have to be one versus the other?

[ edited by Tonya J on 2011-07-29 22:12 ]
Seth Green is passionate about a lot of things. I was fortunate enough to go to a NASA Tweetup in May to watch the Space Shuttle Endeavour launch. I was one of 150 people and Seth and his wife Clare Grant were two others.
He was there for the experience and clearly loved it all.
I absolutely agree that Seth Green saved that panel after Chris Gore arrived. It was going great until he came and immediately proceeded to, well, be Chris Gore. So thankful Seth Green was there to be awesome.
Really hope we get to see video of this. It always warms my heart that the actors behind our favorite characters are just as lovable and awesome.
"It was also suggested that we simply ignore media we donít like. Ignoring it wonít make it go away, and it wonít change the status quo. Only talking about it will."

This to me sounds very under-ambitious. Talking about it, really? Only? It seems to me obvious that if you want to change the media, you go make some better media. If you don't like the depictions of thing X in media Y, it seems to me the best solution is to start creating examples of media Y where thing X is depicted in the way you want it to. Talking about it might pave the way for change a little bit, but real change won't come until somebody goes and actually makes something.
Just an observation.

We have a popular children's song in sweden, which begins with the line (I'm translating loosely):
"Don't think summer's gonna come unless somebody gets it going."
It's bullshit, of course, but as a metaphor for progress in human behavior it couldn't be more true.

[ edited by GreatMuppetyOdin on 2011-07-30 00:58 ]
Thanks for linking to this blog post- I thought it was great. Just want to reference this part-
Finally, a lot of people have been praising Seth Green as the best part of the panel. Iím also very appreciative of what Seth got the chance to say (even though he admittedly hijacked our panel for several minutes Ė Oh, Oz . . .) but want to note that:

- The most memorable and praised part of a panel of women is something a dude said.

- Seth said many things Iíd been attempting to say through the entire session. Thing is, many of my comments were talked over, and suggestions deflected with humor, but Seth was listened to and respected because heís a celebrity.

I wasn't there, I can't say, but this is very believable to me based on my own life experience.
It matches my recollection of the panel. There was a general failure on the part of the panel moderator to ensure the audience wasn't deprived of the panelists' wide-range of opinion, by choosing the "moderation" style of simply letting whoever was most forceful and outgoing control the conversation.

[ edited by The One True b!X on 2011-07-30 02:06 ]
Is there any of these links that also summarizes what Chris Gore said to set the whole thing going?

It reminds me of a convention I went to while in college where the keynote speaker -- for an organization that was renewing its charter that year which included a prohibition of sexual discrimination and harrassment -- was the producer of the Man Show, and showed up with Juggies.
Yes, paragraphs 3 and 4 of this Linked recap by Jennifer de Guzman. Gore said other things but thankfully I blanked them out.
"Too many girls. I miss Oz. He'd get it. He wouldn't say anything, but... he'd get it."

Sorry, that seemed oddly appropriate.

This probably isn't the degree of offensive that most people have in mind, but I want to double-check something -- this Gore said he wanted to copulate with all the female panelists, including Clare Grant, wife of Seth Green, and his master plan was to invite Seth Green's comments expecting support even as he invited Seth Green -- the most popular guy in any room he steps into -- to share this guy's public degradation of his own wife? How does this Gore tie his shoes in the morning? At that point, Seth Green merely embarrassing Gore's crudeness was the best thing that could have happened for Gore, isn't it?

Perhaps my own sense of chivalry is misplaced given the context, but still.
I thought of that, myself. But in the moment, it seemed that most people erred towards ignoring the obscene, inappropriate elephant that was in the room. Maybe SG knows the guy, thought he'd deal with it later, and what was the point of disrupting the panel with a huge conflagration at that point. Jennifer Stuller sat with her back to Gore for the rest of the panel and the moderator, Katrina Hill, did zing him but that was it. My visceral response to the Gore moment(s) is at Stuller's blog which is the main link to the topic. Everyone is entitled to their own opinion of Gore, of course, but to me, it doesn't make his behavior any less reprehensible.
Well, I meant that, as one with a very fervent sense of chivalry in general, we usually choose to keep our own counsel since we often get lumped in as something negative, just another version of Chris Gore himself.

Excellent point by Seth about "sexiness" being a term that's up for grabs, and that nerd-sexy is just as much about Willow (i.e. Alyson Hannigan in a sweater and skirt) as it is about Mystique (i.e. Rebecca Romijn in body paint).

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