And it reminded me of the movie Cuck and everything I hated about it.
Does every lonely, weird dude movie have to end with them holding a gun? Aren’t we done with the mass shooter stuff yet?
I sort of get it. Like everybody else, I learned about the incels when Elliot Rogers committed a mass shooting. And when I started my research for my incel character study, I had this idea that they were all a bunch of mass shooters waiting to happen.
But then I actually talked to a few of them, and I spent a hell of a long time lurking on incel forums. If you’re going to tell stories about a group of people that you aren’t a part of, you need to really immerse yourself in their communities. Learn as much as you can.
I used to be a ghostwriter, so I like to think I’m decent at telling other people’s stories. I mean, people used to pay me thousands of dollars to do it.
Still, I spent months getting to know the incels. And I realized, most are okay. Some are too edgy for me to handle. Most are decent guys who got dealt a shit hand in life.
I guess I don’t get how other creators spent time researching them and still came to the conclusion that the story should have the incel become a mass shooter. I know the ending of this particular short film is ambiguous, but that speech he does is (and I hate that I know this) pretty darn to close to Elliot Rogers’ last video speech. That was obviously intentional.
Why create anything that doesn’t add something new to the conversation? If your work isn’t truly transformative, then what are you even doing? Why bother? I don’t get it. We already have a bunch of lonely dude loses his shit stories. It’s getting a little old.
Cuck was also horribly disappointing, because it added absolutely nothing new to the conversation around male loneliness. The guy causes most of his own problems. He’s a pathetic mess. He’s racist. He deserves everything he gets. Cool, thanks for the r/inceltears reimagining. All that movie does is reaffirm existing views around lonely men. Those guys are already despised….so…what was the point of a movie that presents them as despicable? Everyone in the audience is just like, ‘Cool, so everything I already thought then? Got it.’
Joker, on the other hand, did add something new to the conversation. It gave new insights into male loneliness and mental health issues. It was brilliant. Joker is a sympathetic character. He makes the right choices and is still punished. It would have been better if it hadn’t ended with the whole anti-hero thing, but at least this was a character that forced the audience to think about society and how society treats its outcast male members.
The protagonist of Cuck isn’t sympathetic and he makes all the wrong choices. I don’t understand writing a character you don’t have empathy and respect for. You can write characters you don’t agree with, but when you craft a character you don’t have basic respect for, it’s despicably poor storytelling. The agenda overshadowed the story in Cuck. The character was not treated with dignity by the writer, and because of that, he came across as flat. He was a cardboard cutout, an incel strawman for liberal viewers to watch and feel justified in their disgust for shy, socially-isolated males.
This is basic storytelling. It is good to write characters who do not share your views. But you have to try your best to understand that character, and you have to treat them with respect. Respect the humanity of the characters you write; they represent real people. Make a real effort to understand them and present them as complex and real. Capable, Sympathetic, Active. A well-crafted character needs to be at least two of these. The guy in Cuck is active, but not capable or sympathetic.
When you write an incel, or a lonely virgin, or whatever you want to call him, and have him harboring fantasies of mass murder, what are you adding to the conversation? Just shelve it and write a Beauty and the Beast retelling. That won’t add anything new either, but at least you could sell that shit.
I got two minutes into this short film, Incel, and I was yelling at the computer. As soon as he starts freaking out in the library, calling her a slut, I was like, “We getting another Elliot Rogers retelling here.” And I understand that being your first instinct when writing about incels. But if you have any artistic integrity, you get a few pages in and realize you’re being a hack.
I want stories that are real. I stories of incels who did everything “right” and were still punished by the world. Stories like that force people to turn a critical eye away from incels and turn it towards society. Stories that force people to look at themselves and analyze their own cognitive dissonance.
I want stories that point out how terrible human nature really is. I want stories that highlight the injustice of the world. I want to write something that shows the hypocrisy of it all. The world says one thing and does another. I want to write a story of complete and utter nihilism.
Maybe that’s why I started writing male protagonists. I want to write something that the female experience never gets near.
In short, Jyvur is mad because she found a bunch of incel stories on wattpad, but all of them included mass shootings, then she watched a movie on youtube and had to angry word vomit all over wordpress.
That’s about the scope of it.