This Tumblr collects horrible, lazy transphobic jokes as told by your favorite comedians, TV shows, movies, video games, and comics.
Trigger warnings everywhere!
What is it with these adult cartoons and utterly failing at their half-assed attempts to seem progressive? The Simpsons fucked up their same-sex marriage episode, Family Guy really botched their “positive” depiction of trans women, and King of the Hill fell flat on its face when it tried to tackle the issue. Bob’s Burgers tries super hard to be respectful here (without bothering to actually learn anything about trans people), but it just can’t help itself in making jokes at our expense.
In this episode, Bob decides to take a second job driving a cab. On his first night, he picks up three trans woman sex workers.
Now, whenever shitty writers want to let their audience know that an apartment is cheap and dirty, they’ll use cockroaches and rats. Similarly, when they want to reinforce the idea that the setting is in the bad part of town, they’ll use sex workers and drug users. When they want to take that up a notch, they’ll use trans sex workers. That’s what the trans characters in this episode are here for. To represent the seedy nightlife of whatever city Bob’s Burgers takes place in.
The show then employs several visual gags to remind you that THESE AREN’T YOUR AVERAGE WOMEN HUR HUR! ADAM’S APPLE? YOU KNOW WHAT THAT MEANS, BRO!
(These close ups aren’t my doing. That’s actually what the show did)
Bob, at some point, ends up partying with the trans women, even going as far as to do crack with them (Of course they do crack, they’re trans women sex workers! Seedy underbelly, remember?) and accidentally invites them and all of their friends to his daughter, Tina’s, birthday party.
Note: they keep referring to the women as transvestites, but one of the women jokes about her desire for Sexual Reassignment Surgery. The writers are seriously confused about the difference between transvestites and trans women much in the same way the Simpsons is.
"Uh, I think what my girlfriend here is trying to say is, when it’s time for you to blossom into a woman, you can’t let anything stop you. Not a party, not a boy, not a town full of doctors who refuse to remove your penis."
When they show up to the party, they end up saving the day. They teach Tina to respect the fact that her father was trying his best to maker her happy, and they shame the father of her crush with their knowledge of his diaper fetish into letting his son attend the party. Yay!
This is sadly one of the better portrayals of trans women in a comedy show. The trans women were very likable, no one used any slurs, and most of the time the characters were respectful to them (in that they were slightly uncomfortable instead of vomiting for a minute straight). However, they still used tired trans women sex worker cliches, made tons of jokes about them “actually” being men, and used them to illustrate the city’s seedy underbelly.
Bob’s Burger’s, Season 1, Episode 6 Sheesh Bob, a Cab?
(March 6. 2011)