edgyOne of the first anime I got into was Ranma 1/2. It was all the rage at the time. The basic premise is that Ranma Saotome fell into an accursed spring and now he turns into a she any time he is exposed to cold water, and she turns into a he any time she is exposed to warm water.

Hijinx and hilarity ensue.

I didn’t realize, when I was watching this, that I was apparently taking part in a movement to undermine modern civilization. Ben Shapiro evidently thinks so of a superhero cartoon about a boy who turns into a girl.

Is this really what people are going to get up-in-arms about? Seriously? I recognize that outfits like Breitbart thrive on this sort of outrage-generation. To the extent that Hollywood cares, this amounts to playing a heel in Hollywood’s own PR production. I don’t happen to think that this is part of some gender-bending plot, but to the extent that it is? This encourages them to do it more, because they can get free publicity and making you look silly in the process.

To be fair, I wasn’t between two and 11 when I watched Ranma. In fact, I may not let my children watch it until they are over 11. The reason being, though, violence primarily (as well as some toplessness, usually coinciding with the humor). It would never occur to me that Ranma would be part of some nefarious plot to undermine gender roles.

(I would add an equal amount of eye-rolling to anyone who looks at this and thinks that it represents some sort of serious and substantive progress. It appears to be a cartoon about a superhero that tries to be funny. Heaven help it if it tries to be messagey, because then it probably will fail pretty spectacularly.)

Category: Theater

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