What the cuss?
The recently released Marvel movie “The Avengers” is another example of entertainment media misrepresenting adoptees, the adoption process and even adoption searches. This most recent adoptee slam comes in the form of a line spit out by the almighty Thor, claiming that his brother Loki is a violent whack job because “he’s adopted.”
I am not a Comic-Con kind of gal, but I am sure that legions of fans will get a chuckle out of this reference. It seems that more and more entertainment sources are off their non-adopted rockers when it comes to anything resembling adoption reality.
Case in point, in a recent episode of ABC’s General Hospital, a character named Samantha (Sam) strolls into the hospital where her husband (Jason) was born, asks for his birth records (he is adopted) and is handed everything she asks for without a court order, handshake or even his written permission. Oh, that it were so easy for any adoptee!
Another adoptee media slam from 2010, was in a commercial for a company called ‘For Eyes’. In their commercial, a Brad and Angelina lookalike couple walk into a eyeglass shop, followed by a bunch of multi-cultural children. They offer to adopt the clerk so she will have a “better life.” The DeClassified Adoptee blog has a great post on this.
Even ABC’s hit show, Modern Family, which addresses the sensitive topic of international and gay adoption, with surprisingly effective humor, has made mistakes. In one episode the gay couple who was searching for a child to adopt, joked that a birth mom asked them to show her son, “all 52 states” and that they would “save him from a life time of trying to find East Dakota.” Not so funny to the birth mothers of the world.
Of course, there is also the 1990 movie Problem Child, which tells the story of an adopted seven-year-old, devil child whose is cruel to animals, sets fires, and pees in inappropriate places. The list of Adopt-ist media formulas goes on and on.
I am not so thin-skinned that these things keep my awake at night. However, I believe that stereotypes, especially those that are hurtful, damaging or ignorant should die a quick media death. Adoptees portrayed as criminal misfits, birth moms portrayed as idiots, and general misinformation about our struggles to know where we come from, are unacceptable and really…not that funny!