I should have taken the warning. When Joni Edelman refused to see Inside Out, citing her conviction that they were body shaming Sadness, I shrugged it off. “It’s really good,” my friends said, “and you shouldn’t make an enemy out of something you won’t even learn about.”
But after watching, I know better. And Pixar’s biggest victim of all… was me.
Inside Out is NOT a moving, inventive story that explores the emotional life of a human being. Inside Out is one big stereotype party. And one stereotype is the worst of all: Fear- a tall, skinny, nervous man, voiced by a comedian (WHAT!?), and played for comic relief (Just… wow.)
I am a tall, skinny, nervous man. And Hollywood just wants to laugh at me. How many Shaggys, how many Ross Gellers, can one man take? It’s enough to make me scream and run to the bathroom and lock myself in there until I’m absolutely sure nobody’s around.
Isn’t anybody thinking of the children? Because I am, constantly. Their small, judgmental faces haunt my dreams. And when Hollywood shows them a tall, scrawny Fear, those children will look at me, and cackle, “that’s a silly man who is scared.” I literally can never stop imagining this. Their little fingers pointed at my bony face, “Mommy! Look, it’s Fear! Look at the tall scared man!”
They’re doing this, all of them, laughing at me, all the time. I’ve spent my life talking and writing and screaming into the face of any child I can find, desperately trying to get their respect, and once again, Hollywood makes ME the fool. Thanks, HOLLYWOOD.
And another thing- Disgust looked a whole lot like a girl I had a crush on last year. Is Pixar saying she was disgusted by me? Yes. And now I’m worried that maybe she thought I was gross whenever I tried flirting with her. And oh god, I really hope she’s not reading this because I don’t want her to know I liked her if she didn’t like me. Ugh what do I do, should I call her? YOU TELL ME, PIXAR.
And why was Fear purple? I get ‘feeling blue’ or ‘red with rage,’ but isn’t it ‘white with fear?’ There’s only one reason Pixar made Fear a tall, thin purple man, and not a tall, thin white man: to scare me. White is safe (clouds), purple is scary (bruises.) Free tip, Pixar: STOP giving your characters scary colors and emotionally hurtful shapes. Next time, make your characters round, brown, and identically sized. The people will thank you.
So here’s the bottom line: the Hollywood hacks all say, “that was a beautiful, creative story about our emotions working together to guide a human life.” Sure. Nice line, hacks. But when I watched that movie, literally all I could see was “skinny woman, fat woman, short man, skinny man, skinny man stupid, skinny man bad, laugh at skinny man.” And if that’s all I’m seeing, then something is wrong, terribly wrong, with Pixar. And until they apologize, I will be in my bathroom, soaked in terror sweat, hiding from the children.