Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Vice Ganda's Rape Joke Offends Jessica Soho

So what's new in social media? I honestly am not sure. Hahaha. Been out for a while and haven't been able to check online for a few days. I do not know if this video getting viral is old news but tonight, or shall I say this morning because it is already past 12AM, is the first time I saw this video. Now why did I get interested in this video? It is because it again captured the attention of a lot Filipinos not only here but also those who are abroad.

If your internet is as crappy as my Smart Bro Canopy, (I keep on forgetting to write about this internet service but be ready Smart because I'm gonna do it soon)  the video above might take a year to load so let me tell you what it is about. The video shows Vice Ganda joking about Jessica Soho, if you are in the Philippines I know you would know him but if you are not here, then I'll give you a brief background. He is a gay comedian known for his rude jokes. Yes, you read it right, rude jokes. So now you ask, why is it a big deal now then? Its what's he's known for... Was it because he made fun of the known news anchor Jessica Soho? Nah.. Not really that... As Jessica herself said "this is not about me"... So what then? Well because he just pulled off a "rape" joke...

By this time, I know you are now cursing Vice Ganda and saying how much of an asshole he is. I know you would judge him right away. Why? Because his joke was offensive... Or is it really?

No do not raise your eyebrows like that. I am not siding with Vice Ganda here... I am here to simply give you a clearer view of the issue. Ready???  Okay. Lets proceed. Here in the Philippines, back in the day, the kind of jokes people laugh at are those green jokes and slapstick humor. Remember the Pork-chop Duo? Remember all those smack to the back of the head our old comedians were so fond of doing? That kind of comedy was what was funny back then. Now, when there was a comedy bar boom in the country, the jokes eventually evolved. Stand up comedy took a more westernized approach. But what was noticeable was the jokes that were making fun of other people. I've been to the comedy bars and I could personally say that the people are entertained by this kind of humor. The crowd goes to an uproar on this. So why are we reacting to this joke now?

If you would ask my opinion, I find rape jokes to be simply tasteless. Based on the video above, it looks like a lot of Filipinos actually laughed at the joke. Do I judge them for finding it funny? No.... You wanna know why? Because in a stand up comedy setting, if you are part of the audience, you get carried into the momentum. Once you start laughing, it would be hard for you to stop when an inappropriate joke gets in. Well, that is just me justifying it... Hoping the Filipinos still have taste and are not yet insensitive. Come on, prove me right on this... Fuck, I might just be wrong... That's a sad thought right there... I need a drink!

Where did I left? Oh... Forget about that. The issue here is, "was it right for Vice Ganda and his team of writers if there are, to include a rape joke in their set"? In this age of political correctness, I think they should've not included that joke. I couldn't care less about him joking on Jessica Soho's weight. That is fine with me. I mean, I have been to comedy bars in the US and I tell you, there are more awful things in the world that comedians there are joking about, but I still find it funny. An example would be the racist jokes or stereotype jokes. I admit that I laugh at some offensive humor when it is done right but in my opinion, a rape joke can't be done right! We can always find funny things in our sufferings, Filipinos are known for this but there’s a difference between comedy and shock value, for me, joking about certain taboo topics is just a cheap shot.

While my opinion on this will not change, I am not saying that this should be a law on what should be funny and what should not. I find some of the episodes of Family Guy and The Simpsons funny, the others not. So the question I have for you now is this:

Do you want to be in a culture where rape jokes are appreciated?

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