Probably Not the Last Woman Barfing

[Trigger warning for misogyny, homophobia, Islamophobia.]

The other night, Spudsy called me and, in a grave tone, said, "I need to talk to you."

"Sure," I said, mildly concerned. "What's up?"

"I'm really concerned about something," he said. "I'm concerned that you've forgotten that Last Man Standing premieres tonight."

I burst out laughing. "You asshole!"

I did not watch the premiere of Professional Misogynist Tim Allen's new show, about which I've previously written here and here, because I suspected that it would be full of misogynist, homophobic, transphobic, racist, and disablist humor. Which isn't really my thing. Ahem.

This morning, I read Linda Holmes' review of Last Man Standing, and it turns out I was totally wrong: Last Man Standing is an enlightened treatise on the evolving definitions of masculinity in modern Western culture.

Just kidding! It's hateful garbage.
There is a sense in the pilot that someone sat around a table and said, "We need to make a show for people who are really upset about the fact that sitcoms don't make as many jokes about women, gay men and people from other countries as they used to." And so, in the first episode, Allen's character:

— Snarls in response to his wife's request that he drive their daughter to soccer that soccer is "Europe's covert war for the hearts and minds of America's kids."

— Tells a kid named Kyle that he has a good "man's name," only to be crushed when he learns it's the kid's mother's maiden name. [...]

— Says he likes where he works because it "smells like balls in here."

— Laments boys who play soccer and use hair gel.

— Doubles over in agony about his daughter's boyfriend going to a tanning salon.

— Laughs hysterically at the idea that his wife could drive his truck for a day and he could drive the minivan.

— Encounters a weak, "unmanly" day care provider who doesn't let him call his grandson "champ" because it "implies victory over another person." Said unmanly man invites Mike to meet another kid's "two dads" who are inside making flax and pumpkin muffins. ("Please tell me that's not [the dads'] names," says Mike derisively of "Flax" and "Pumpkin.")

— Directly after hearing about the "two dads," is asked to take his shoes off because they're "building a mosque out of pillows." When he hears this, he grabs his grandson and removes him from the daycare and takes him to the ball-smelling workplace for the day.

— Tells his daughter that her son can't go to that daycare anymore, because he'll wind up "dancing on a float," which Allen follows with an imitation of, I guess, a gay man dancing. ... At press tour, when asked whether that apparently homophobic joke would stay in the final pilot (it did), Allen had nothing except that it wasn't meant to be offensive.
You know, the thing that always amazes me about this shit is that its fans sincerely believe that this sort of humor honors men. Straight white Christian men, that is. (As if there's any other kind in their paradigm.) And they think that Tim Allen is some kind of macho folk hero built out of spare carburetors with Old Spice coursing through his veins, but he's just an opportunistic huckster who saw a niche on the comedy circuit and filled it by grunting like a gorilla.

Two weeks ago, Allen was on Jay Leno's garbage fart of a show, to which Kenny Blogginz and I tuned in just to be horrified (and we were, since Scotty McCreery was on the same episode singing his putrid tune "The Trouble With Girls"). And what little of the segment there was during which Leno wasn't teasing Allen about getting manicures and pedicures (Jay Leno, you are so gross!), the two men discussed rebuilding old cars, and Allen actually had the temerity to say he was rebuilding some old car, while casually admitting he pays some dude to do the actual work for him.

Allen's just a pampered dipfuck with epic privilege, who probably spends his time in his manicurist's chair conceiving the bigoted jokes to pander to the lowest common denominator among patriarchy aficionados who are ultimately done no favors by a show that suggests they're total douchebags.

Which, of course, is to say nothing for the harm those jokes, such as they are, do to the marginalized people who are their targets.

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