Someone wrote in [community profile] hydratrashmeme 2014-06-23 07:04 pm (UTC)

On darker characterisation [rape culture tw]

On the issue of dark!Steve and/or dark!Avengers taking part in the party games:

First off, I totally agree this would involve the Avengers being darker characters than most of us would headcanon. I don't personally believe canon!Steve would ever willingly rape Bucky, and if our trashmod and community decides that having Steve cross that line is a bridge too far, I'll accept that decision.

But I do think there are some points to be made in favour of allowing darker versions of the "good guys" - first and foremost that the vast majority of prompts in this kinkmeme involve making characters darker than they are in canon. As much as I love playing in this trashcan, I can't say I genuinely believe that canon!Rumlow or canon!Pierce would actually have brutally raped the Winter Soldier on a regular basis. And when one anon said something along similar lines, our trashmod did defend the "trashiness of thy neighbor's kinks" (http://hydratrashmeme.dreamwidth.org/587.html?thread=109131#cmt109131). (That's not a criticism of any kind, I just wanted to bring it up as a possibly-relevant precedent to consider.)

Secondly, I do still think angry!anon raised a valid point on the topic of what is or isn't OOC. The idea that some characters are too "good" to rape does fundamentally assume that we can predict their attitudes to consent based on their other behaviour. And the unfortunate truth is many of us know firsthand that doesn't always work. I do admit Steve might be the one exception I'd consider because canonically he's so morally white, but I don't think it's unreasonable that some people might want to play with darker Avengers doing bad things in here.

I definitely agree that the key thing that needs to be respected is that we all recognise how filthy our trashcan is. And given that the prompt that sparked all this was anonymous, nobody had any idea how much the prompter understood of rape culture and its complexities. So it's totally understandable that people were concerned that the prompter might have been perpetuating typical rapist attitudes and excuses unawares, rather than intentionally evoking them for trash party purposes.

That said, if the prompt had included something along the lines of "I just want to see Steve with a dark side," I think that would've made it clear that the prompt wasn't "way less consensual than the prompter seems aware of" (http://hydratrashmeme.dreamwidth.org/587.html?thread=157003#cmt157003), and I personally would have been okay with that.

So yeah, I'd be in favour of allowing darker Avengers, possibly with the stipulation that instances of "good" guys doing bad things are extra-clear that they're still bad things and shouldn't be any less unforgiveable. (And maybe also have a policy of asking to clarify intent if there's ambiguity, to avoid misunderstandings in future?)

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