"In a weird way, it would've been homophobic not
to punch you."
Some authors like to play favorites making one side look good one, while making fun of the side they don't sympathise with.
Not in this show. In this kind of show, there is no such thing as an acceptable target
. They either mock all sides of an argument or none.
This trope is never played completely straight all the time due to the fact that Most Writers Are Human
and all humans are biased (at least unconsciously).
This trope applies when a show doesn't have bias for any side in a given situation. However, it can be used inside the story too, when a character is particularly offensive to everybody.
A number of people have called themselves equal-opportunity offenders when defending themselves from accusations of bias, bigotry, etc, and have had varying degrees of success. The less successful ones have helped make the phrase a tad controversial, if only by association. One point raised against it, for example here
, is that there are far more identifiable groups of humans than anyone could have time to offend. By selecting Scientologists
for mockery and overlooking plumbers or right-handed people, the show is being less than "equal". In response, one could argue that certain groupings are naturally associated with certain stereotypes to begin with and it's not the show's fault that those prior groupings, however arbitrary they may be, are the ones that come to our minds as the "sides" in question.
In addition, it has been argued that if different groups of people are in unequal situations to begin with, then it's difficult to offend them all "the same". note
Of course, this argument is itself controversial, and has been challenged as misguided, unfair, or patronizing. It's a heated debate
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- Haagse Harry mocks every ethnicity and political background, starting with the author's own.
- Top Gear. Especially Jeremy Clarkson. Well, mostly Jeremy Clarkson. Entirely by himself. Occasionally he does like a car. But usually he hates most of them, complains about the engineers, mocks the factory worker, and makes offensive comments about the entire population of the manufacturers country. Especially when he's on a test drive in that country. But no country is safe and even England gets the same treatment.
- Frankie Boyle will attack anyone and everyone.
- Mongrels was very free about who it set out to offend.
- In-universe example: Dr. Gregory House.
- S Club 7 Series: None of the villains, even the sheriff in the Back To The 50s, single out a member of band based on race and religion. They were targeted by a villain because of their ability to foil an evil plot and inspiring others to stand-up for themselves... nothing more.
- In the Back To The 50s film, Bradley would've been an easy target because he's black and attacks against blacks by whites in the 50s were common, yet the Rockets and the sheriff only targeted him because he was willing to stand up for himself and his friends. Paul and Jo, who are WHITE, were also jailed along with Bradley and Rachel, who's Eurasian. Tina is half Indo-Guyanese, while Jon and Hannah were also white and they were fair game!
- The Straight Dope: Cecil Adams doesn't shy away from sensitive topics just because they may offend. In one column he said, "About the only people this column has failed to offend already in its checkered history are left-handed Anabaptists."note
- George Carlin, moreso in his early days than his later ones. If you exist, he makes fun of you. Woman, man, black, white, left, right, didn't matter. To him, you sucked or someone was making you up.
- Lisa Lampenelli. Audience members have gotten offended when she wasn't making fun of them.
- Monty Pythons The Meaning Of Life (the video game) starts with a long list of those who it will offend, working out to pretty much everybody.
- Punch-Out!! also has a long list of nationally stereotypical boxers. It also helps that two of said boxers are from the creators' home countries. (Canada for Next Level Games, and Japan for Nintendo)
- Grand Theft Auto mocks the sad state of society, the sad state of the outcasts of society, minorities, white people, gay people, straight people, transpeople, you, game developers, religion, atheists, cults, the military, the government, those against the government, foreign art, and old people. It's like Bret Easton Ellis and Todd Solondz teamed up with MAD Magazine to make gangster flicks.