Home / General / SEK, Sarah Rasher, and Graphic Policy on <em>Jessica Jones</em>: Our mediated lives and the struggle to strip-mine them for meaning

SEK, Sarah Rasher, and Graphic Policy on Jessica Jones: Our mediated lives and the struggle to strip-mine them for meaning


“The Jew Kaufman” appeared on an accidentally special all-Jew, Hanukkah episode of Graphic Policy’s “Jonesing for Jessica” podcast with Brett, Elana, and another guest, Sarah Rasher. It was only supposed to last for an hour, but it lasted for…

…sorry, recycling the jokes I made before the show and repeated on-air is bad form. But the conversation — as any conversation about the show will inevitably be — took many a dark turn, with frank discussions of PTSD, misogyny, drug and alcohol addiction, the men’s rights advocates and their idolization of Kilgrave, as well as a few filmic observations about homages to Blowup and Rope in the fourth episode.


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  • 33lp

    This needs some episode screen shots with a bunch of lines indicating framing and eye direction and such.

    • Snarki, child of Loki

      Nah, needz moar OLDMAN CAT.

    • SEK

      I keep on trying to block out time, but between work, editing, and writing a novel, I can’t seem to find any. One day, though! (I do talk a lot about the visuals though, if it’s any consolation.)

      • David Hunt

        Too bad, but we can’t really expect you to. They very explicitly state that there are no laser-eyes in this series.

    • Duvall

      Sorry, all attempts to introduce laser eyes to the MCU have been blocked by lawyers from 20th Century Fox.

    • njorl

      It’s a bit risky to do that in a show where “eye lasers” actually appears in the script.

  • lcindc

    Jessica Jones is a fantastic show (got 4 more episodes to go). But seriously, there are people out there who idolize Kilgrave? No, I don’t want to look for myself. It’s too disturbing a thought.

    • David Hunt

      I think I can see some of the appeal to the MRA types. Kilgrave is shown explicitly exercising his total power to do horrible things, yes. But in some of his dialogue with Jessica, he’s shocked that she calls his past raping of her “rape.” IIRC, he wonders if she actually wanted it, deep down, in spite of the fact that she had absolutely no choice but to obey him. He’s basically quoting from the rape apologist’s script. He’s signally to the MRAs that he’s one of them and he has the power to make those stuck up ****’s do what they really know they should be doing anyway, etc.

      That’s my best guess anyway. That plus he’s a walking power fantasy.

      Of course, Kilgrave’s rape denial is also part of his denial of any wrong-doing of any kind. I remember his claim that he never killed anyone, because he’s never had to pull the trigger himself. He makes other people do it for him, so that means it isn’t his fault. Of course in his case, his ability to compel absolute obedience make that like a hit man blaming the bullet.

      • Sly

        That plus he’s a walking power fantasy.

        Power fantasy to really odd and messed up people, I suppose. Kilgrave’s “gift” literally makes him incapable of forming relationships with autonomous human beings. If you’re predisposed to viewing other human beings as potential playthings then that probably won’t seem so bad, but that’s what makes Kilgrave a monster. He only lament’s that side of his ability when he’s trying to gain sympathy; under all other circumstances he actively revels in it.

    • Sly

      Kilgrave is one of the more complete portraits of a rapist in recent memory, and that portrait includes a whole lot of the pathetic narcissism that serves to motivate rapists and that rape apologists find so ideologically seductive. It stands to reason that those same apologists will find the character sympathetic.

  • rm

    Dammit. I don’t watch videos or listen to podcasts — I want it all written — but I will have to listen to this one. And then I might get hooked. Dammit.

    And hard as the show worked to demonstrate Kilgrave’s loathsome evil, I am sadly (and disgustedly) not surprised that the MRA types might be idolizing him. They already idolize real-world mass murderers. Self-loathing is the foundation of their aggrievement — their self-loathing is wimmen’s fault.

    • CP

      I haven’t finished the show yet, but so far I thought Kilgrave was so clearly meant as an embodiment of every self-proclaimed Nice Guy and MRA believer out there, that I’m not at all surprised some of them saw the comparison and took it to mean Kilgrave was the hero.

  • timodm

    Help! SEK, please link to the Salon post you mention about MRAs idolizing Kilgrave. I’ve searched on google and on the Salon site, using a mix of search terms [kaufman “jessica jones” (mra|mras|”men’s rights”) salon [etc.]] and I haven’t been able to find it.

    Would love to read the post. (Or, more accurately, I’m morbidly fascinated by the idea of reading about these people idolizing Kilgrave. It will make me sick, but I’m fascinated by it nonetheless.)

    • timodm

      I very much enjoyed the podcast, btw.

    • SEK

      I can’t find it either. I know I wrote it, at least I remember writing it. Maybe I never finished it to my satisfaction? Jesus, I write so much, this sometimes happens. If I didn’t actually ever get around to publishing it, I’ll throw it up here.

      • rm

        Don’t be so hard on yourself. We do not find your posts vomitous in any way.

      • timodm

        Thanks for checking! I will definitely see it if you post it on LGM.

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