No, these filmmakers [for Rise of Skywalker and Endgame] are instead content to get in just before the finish line, waiting until the very last movies in their respective franchises to throw the dogs a bone. The only way to talk about these benchmarks is dismissively: too little, too late. But we’re of course supposed to celebrate. Never mind the incredible trove of LGBT representation you do see in, say, fan fiction; never mind all the ways fans have taken the mere idea of Finn and Poe as lovers and done more with it, with more creativity and sympathy, than any Disney property will likely ever do. Never mind the fact that, accordingly, LGBT representation in Disney’s art does exist—among its fans, not its creators.
The idea that these laughably minor wins are something to celebrate goes hand in hand with Disney’s broader attitude toward film history, which the company has long seemed to think is something better off locked up in a vault somewhere—the better to exploit the art’s value, after all. Let’s just say it straight: The company that won’t even let Baby Yoda memes flourish without losing its shit over copyright will never be a beacon of representation of any sort, let alone queer representation, which, among other things, has often made sport of appropriating and messy-ing the firm sexual boundaries in ostensibly straight, copyrighted art. Disney is too concerned with representation as product to be a beacon of anything. And the fans who care will still, even as of these two movies, largely be left to their own creative, imaginative devices—and they are probably better off.
K. Austin Collins on.
Make 2020 the year you say “No!” to corporate art!