So, Freud's essay on the "uncanny" made me think of Jordan Peele & Get Out.— KYLE A B (@kyalbr) May 15, 2018
The weird coincidence that the German word for the uncanny or the unsettling is "unheimlich" and our procedure for rescuing the near dead is "the Heimlich."
But, then my thoughts spun out of control: pic.twitter.com/EUZIHrg4j7
In order to keep this thread structured, visualize two branches.— KYLE A B (@kyalbr) May 15, 2018
The first branch: Jim Hudson 🌱
The second branch: Georgina. 🌿
And, let's start with the first. But, who the hell is Jim Hudson?
This is Jim Hudson. pic.twitter.com/KY1XhpOp49
In most reviews of Get Out, Hudson's role recedes a bit.— KYLE A B (@kyalbr) May 15, 2018
But, he's very interesting to me.
You'll recall that he's the wealthy blind man who places the winning bid on Chris, claiming he couldn't care less about race, he just wants Chris's good eyesight. pic.twitter.com/hsAucrfMxr
In this way, Peele delineates Hudson's racism from Rose's and Jeremy's--siblings who have two figuratively dueling forms of racism:— KYLE A B (@kyalbr) May 15, 2018
Jeremy's racism is physical and violent, Rose's (no less dangerous) is pleasant and white womanish.
But, Hudson's racism?
Now, I don't think Hudson's casting is accidental.— KYLE A B (@kyalbr) May 15, 2018
Hudson is played by Stephen Root and Root was memorably in a favorite film of mine: O Brother Where Art Thou (2000).
In that film, a chain gang of men break free from their bondage and go on the lam. pic.twitter.com/5oKkynnHEV
On the road, they encounter Tommy Johnson, a black man who claims he sold his soul to the Devil at midnight in order to be able to play the guitar so beautifully.— KYLE A B (@kyalbr) May 15, 2018
In need of funds, the boys go to a radio station. pic.twitter.com/t1eO9wvF92
At the radio station, there is a blind station manager who asks if they're Black. Ulysses (Clooney) says "yep...except our guitar player."— KYLE A B (@kyalbr) May 15, 2018
The station manager says he doesn't need blacks. Clooney says kidding. We're white. Except our guitar player.
Root is the blind man. pic.twitter.com/8dzTfIfwJt
The song they subsequently record becomes (unknown to them) a national hit.— KYLE A B (@kyalbr) May 15, 2018
So, in Get Out and O Brother, Stephen Root embodies this concept of the colorblind profiting off of black talent.
For Tommy, it is his guitar skills. For Chris, it is his eye for good pictures. pic.twitter.com/12E9DmYTb0
Now, Hudson's lack of eyesight is not something Freud would miss.— KYLE A B (@kyalbr) May 15, 2018
In Freud's estimation, to lose one's eyesight was a form of castration and lack eyesight is a form of impotency.
The question, then, is does Peele at all tie Hudson's desire to any phallic, black object?
Now, for the second branch, Georgina.— KYLE A B (@kyalbr) May 15, 2018
Freud's entire premise behind "unheimlich" is that for something to be creepy, it can't just be new and unfamiliar but has to approach familiarity.
Here's a long quote but these could very well be Betty Gabriel's acting notes. pic.twitter.com/XmUtQteA6P
"...excite in the spectator that automatic, mechanical processes are at work, concealed beneath the ordinary appearance of animation." pic.twitter.com/5SuuMRgA31— KYLE A B (@kyalbr) May 15, 2018
As a kid, I used to be terrified of Goosebumps's "Piano Lessons Can Be Murder" and it was because the Santa Claus-esque piano instructor was unheimlich.— KYLE A B (@kyalbr) May 15, 2018
That episode plays around Freud's thinking because the instructor (Dr. Shreek) turns out to be an animatron. pic.twitter.com/F8sGajNe0t
Speaking of animatronics, Freud's theories were obviously then introduced into robotics and helped to explain what is now referred to as the— KYLE A B (@kyalbr) May 15, 2018
the intense discomfort we feel towards things that appear almost human but not quite. pic.twitter.com/bDH3qbv3ON
SIDE NOTE: This is why I think we're a nation terrified of clowns and why evil smiles are so disorientating: our senses are telling us to fucking run while our brain is seeing a pleasant and welcoming gesture. pic.twitter.com/sfvTojFWfX— KYLE A B (@kyalbr) May 15, 2018
Anyway,— KYLE A B (@kyalbr) May 15, 2018
So, in Branch 1, colorblindness is a tertiary form of racism not often discussed in the analysis of Get Out.
In addition, Freud could read a castration complex into Hudson's desire for Chris's eyes. pic.twitter.com/IugG1buF1F
And,— KYLE A B (@kyalbr) May 15, 2018
in Branch 2, Betty Gabriel nails the portrayal of Georgina because she plays her perfectly in the unheimlich,
the uncanny valley
which (on a chart) could literally be described as
the sunken place. pic.twitter.com/jQirDwwE7i