Is Disney and Pixar’s ‘Toy Story 4’ Inclusive? One Critic Doesn’t Think So
The newest Toy Story movie, Toy Story 4, received positive reviews from fans and critics alike. It introduced a few new characters, like Bunny and Ducky, it briefly featured a child with a cochlear implant, and it summed up the next chapter of Woody, Buzz, and Jessie’s journey. Still, writer Stella Duffy has a few opinions about the new Pixar film, even calling it sexist and disablist. Read more about the critic’s honest review, here.
One film critic claimed ‘Toy Story 4’ is sexist, disablist, and has ‘no black leads’
In a general sense, critic reviews for Disney and Pixar’s film, Toy Story 4 are positive. However, one critic sees massive flaws in the animated movie. During an interview with BBC Radio 4’s Saturday Review Show, UK writer Stella Duffy called the film disablist and sexist.
“Okay, let’s talk about the white feminism on display here,” Stella Buffy said. “‘Oh look! Bo-Peep’s a feminist.’ No, she’s not! She’s still going to fall in love, she’s still going to have the happily ever after, that’s not feminism! It’s a woman who kicks off her skirt to reveal bloomers.”
On Twitter, the critic clarified her statement. She stated that Bo Peep falling in love doesn’t make her anti-feminist, but it does reinforce themes of hetero-normativity in the Toy Story universe. Furthermore, just because Bo changed her outfit does not mean that her narrative changed. Some fans on Twitter agreed with the critic, stating that Bo’s story was not what they expected.
“The opposite of what I expected to happen regarding Bo happened though. Can’t say more without spoiling. Also, my friend and I noticed a couple of [LGBTQ] couples across the film which we had considered a healthy amount of inclusion,” said one Twitter user. “There’s also Giggles McDimples.”
Jorden Peele and Keegan-Michael Key voiced two new ‘Toy Story’ characters
Two of the newer characters added to the Toy Story cast include Bunny and Ducky, two carnival toys that join Woody and Buzz on their adventures. These two characters are voiced by actors Jorden Peele and Keegan-Michael Key, respectively.
Jordan Peele, who voices Bunny, recently earned recognition for his horror movies, Get Out and Us. Those movies primarily featuring a diverse cast, including Lupita Nyong’o as the main character in Us. Jordan Peele was also a producer for the award-winning movie,
The critic, Stella Duffy, stated that even though Bunny and Ducky are voiced by black actors, their characters have blue and yellow fur.
Some Pixar fans disagreed with the critic, saying ‘Toy Story 4’ is inclusive
Fans of the Toy Story franchise expressed their opinions of the new film on social media. Some agreed with the critic, saying that Toy Story should try harder to be inclusive. Others disagreed, saying that the film included subtle nods to people of different backgrounds — that includes a child with a cochlear implant in Bonnie’s kindergarten class.
“For those asking why this is so significant; as a child, I knew nothing about cochlear implants and had never seen one. Aged 13, I was asked to have one and immediately said no due to fear of the unknown. To see a child in such an iconic film could of made a huge difference,” said one fan on Twitter.
“This was the moment I had tears, I’m sure the whole theater heard me pointing them out to my kids. Finally that ‘LOOK! It’s me!’ moment,” said another Twitter user.