Feminist Author Points Out “The Mandalorian” Has No Female Characters, Gets Thousands Of Angry Dudes In Her Mentions

Feminist Anita Sarkeesian is no stranger to harassment online. She was one of the main figures attacked by the Gamergaters, a group of guys who were like predecessors to incels, dudes who claimed they had a problem with “ethics in journalism” but mainly seemed to attack women who dared to get involved in video gaming. Sarkeesian has done a lot of research and many presentations on women are represented in video games. As you might guess, not well.

This week, Sarkeesian tweeted an observation about the new Disney+ show, The Mandalorian. The show is already a hit with Star Wars fans because it’s given them something they didn’t even know they needed: a Baby Yoda.

In her original tweet, Sarkeesian commented that in the first episode, it didn’t seem like a single woman spoke.

She eventually corrected herself and said that there was a scene with a woman in it, but the world is obviously patriarchal, and it’s frustrating to see that normalized. Her tweet got ratioed, with 3,000 people replying to insult her:

In a thread, Sarkeesian expanded on her point, writing, “Most mass media overwhelmingly centers men, and perpetuates patriarchy. The is no exception. It wastes no time in establishing a patriarchal setting: the bartender is a man, the bar patrons are men, the cab driver is a man, etc. The first “female” we meet is the ship.

She continued: “It may introduce a few significant female characters later on. Great. It doesn’t change the fact it perpetuates and normalizes patriarchy. We all accept patriarchy in our mass media without batting an eye. When someone calls it out, we get upset. I wonder why.”

But, she says, what’s worse is that her tweet has led to even more harassment in her life. While she has faced violent threats, she wants to remind everyone that just constantly being told to shut up is as bad.

“This morning I woke up to 2.7 thousand replies (and they are still coming in). These replies are a mish-mash of “no one cares” “you’re pathetic” “leave our precious toys alone” “relax” “good! women are dumb” etc etc etc This is nothing particularly new but…it does offer us a moment to reflect on how online harassment is much more than sensational headlines about death and rape threats. It can also be aggressive dogpiles of thousands of voices desperately trying to silence feminist and progressive perspectives.”

To Sarkeesian’s point, several tweets in her thread are getting ratioed again, and a lot of the responses are pretty negative:

This is the kind of stuff Sarkeesian and other women who criticize popular media for sexist representation face regularly. You gotta wonder why all these dudes who hate her so much give her so much attention. Maybe because they enjoy hating a woman even more than they enjoy loving Star Wars.