“I want to start by saying, these aren’t real,” Whoopi said on the panel. “There are no dragons, there are no hobbits.”
“And there are critics who say they were too awake by – yes – adding different characters. Are you telling me black people can’t be fake people either?”
Whoopi then wondered if these extreme fandoms would spark protests because of the diverse cast. She then looked straight into the camera and asked, “What’s wrong with you guys?”
Cohost Sunny Hostin added that the controversy was rooted in the belief that the series strayed from the books they are based on. Both series feature mythical creatures, but the addition of POC actors such as Steve Toussaint, Sophia Nomvete, Thusitha Jayasundera and Ismael Cruz Córdova caused the racial uproar.
“What I find fascinating is that dragons are okay — fire-breathing dragons,” Sunny said. “And people with white hair who are born this way when they are little, with purple eyes, but black people is just a bridge too far for them.”
Whoopi, who couldn’t help but laugh at the ridiculousness of it all, joked that fans will “lose their minds” when they realize the new Little Mermaid will be played by Halle Bailey… a black woman.
“I don’t want to upset mermaids watching the show because I know there are many communities of mermaids of different colors. There are violet mermaids, there are pink mermaids, there are black mermaids, there are Latina mermaids, there are are mermaids of all kinds.”
Whoopi reminded viewers that it’s important to see mythical characters of different races and backgrounds because people want to. Representation of diverse communities has always been lacking when it comes to fantasy realms. And since the fanbases for this series aren’t just white people, it should reflect just that.
“So, all of you who are in trouble because there are black hobbits — get a job,” Whoopi said. “Look for yourself because you’re focused on the wrong things.”
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