Crip Drag YKTTW Discussion

Crip Drag
(permanent link) added: 2009-12-13 10:08:38 sponsor: CodeMan38 edited by: Erda (last reply: 2011-10-10 15:34:13)

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The term "crip drag", quite simply, refers to when a character with a disability is played by someone without that disability. (And yes, this is an actual term used in disability discourse; Google it and see for yourself.)

This is so common that it'd probably be best to limit the listing to aversions, subversions, satires, etc. For example:

  • I Am Sam is a partial aversion. Of course, Sean Penn isn't developmentally disabled-- but many of the actors who play Sam's housemates are.
  • The Farrelly Brothers movie The Ringer is both a satire and a partial aversion. The plot centers around a guy who pretends to be developmentally disabled to get into the Special Olympics as part of a bar bet... and quickly ends up being discovered as a fake by the Special Olympians. Several of whom are actually played by developmentally disabled actors.
  • Many deaf actors. Marlee Matlin, Shoshannah Stern, Deanne Bray, just to name three.
  • Geri Jewell, who played Jewel on Deadwood and Geri on The Facts of Life, actually has cerebral palsy.
  • S. Robert Morgan, who played Butchie on The Wire, is actually blind.

  • The Ringer, as mentioned above.
  • Tropic Thunder satirizes this with the Show Within a Show "Simple Jack", but not as well as it could have in this troper's opinion (it mocks crip drag, but merely to a "But Not Too Disabled" extent).

I know there are other aversions and satires out there, but they're not coming to mind.
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