At the moment, it’s pretty fashionable to hate on Harvey Weinstein, a Hollywood bigwig who’s been accused of some really, really nasty stuff.
When all of Hollywood starts coming out with horror stories about this guy’s sexual abuse record all at the same time, you can tell that a lot of bottled up anger and resentment is finally being let loose on a reprehensible human being.
If hating Harvey Weinstein is currently cool, then Seth McFarlane is definitely a Hating Harvey Hipster – he wants everyone to know that he’s been pushing back against this creep long before it was cool.
His evidence: a snide joke at the Oscars, that McFarlane made in 2011.
Way back when he hosted the awards, the comedian, writer, actor, an singer made an off-the-cuff remark while reading the nominees for Best Actress:
“Congratulations, you five ladies no longer have to pretend to be attracted to Harvey Weinstein.”
Boom. Take that, Harvey Weinstein!
In the wake of Weinstein’s misdeeds coming to light, McFarlane is eager to explain the joke in full, explaining that this wasn’t just some cheeky dig at a powerful Hollywood mogul, but rather a pointed attack on the way he treated women throughout the industry.
— Seth MacFarlane (@SethMacFarlane) October 11, 2017
Apparently, a friend had confided in him that Weinstein had abused her, and, powerless to do anything about this himself, McFarlane turned to the only weapon in his arsenal: awkward humor.
“In 2011, my friend and colleague Jessica Barth, with whom I worked on the Ted films, confided in me regarding her encounter with Harvey Weinstein and his attempted advances. She has since courageously come forward to speak out. It was with this account in mind that, when I hosted the Oscars in 2013, I couldn’t resist the opportunity to take a hard swing in his direction. Make no mistake, this came from a place of loathing and anger.”
Good ol’ Seth’s attempts to push back against a media overlord may seem pretty weaksauce, but in his defense, it’s a lot more than what most of Hollywood was doing at the time. It seems like an awful lot of people had their fingers stuck firmly in their ears, ignoring anything Weinstein did out of fear for their careers, before now rushing to condemn the man now that it’s finally acceptable to do so.
Some people, such as Matt Damon and Russel Crowe, are in more trouble, caught up in allegations themselves as they’re accused of deliberately burying journalistic reports on Weinstein’s many sins. Whether or not these reports prove to be true, there’s certainly been an awful lot of cover-ups over the past few decades, and a lot more dirty laundry will hit the fan before long.
Seth McFarlane’s humor may not be for everyone. He’s sadly a little too eager to make jokes about sexual abuse throughout his work (not just when he’s talking directly to actual potential victims of these crimes).
At least he definitely hates Harvey Weinstein and his actions, though.
Perhaps at the moment, as Hollywood hemorrhages under the weight of successive abuse allegations, that’s the most we can hope for.
That sure does seem like a low standard to set, though.