Mel gibson comeback daddy's home 2

Apparently Mel Gibson is “Family Friendly” Again? How Did We Let This Happen?

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Last week we asked the question Hold On, How Is Mel Gibson Still a Thing? and hoped that after the pull of Louis C.K.’s film I Love You, Daddy and the first post-scandal Weinstein Company release only making $742, the answer would be, “Naw, false alarm.” Yet Daddy’s Home 2, featuring not one, but two men who have committed violent crimes, managed to sweep at the box office.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, Daddy’s Home 2 performed better than expected, making a $30 million weekend debut with 37% of the audience being families. Yes, people brought their children to this. As THR wrote:

Box-office analyst Paul Dergarbedian says Gibson’s appearance in the movie didn’t prove a deterrent, and may have even raised its profile. “If Gibson can stay the course, his prospects as an actor seem bright — something unimaginable just a few short years ago,”

Yes, it seemed unimaginable, and it should have been unattainable, but let’s not forget: Hollywood already backed Gibson when he directed Hacksaw Ridge and gave him an Oscar nomination for it. In fact, according to sources from the film, “[Mark] Wahlberg, who is represented by Emanuel, pressed for Gibson to be cast.” How freaking perfect is that?

Not only are people behind the scenes backing Gibson, but audiences are rewarding him despite knowing his well-documented behavior. Which shouldn’t be a surprise, considering how his co-star has also had a rising career despite blinding a man. I had hoped that, with all the recent conversations about men’s mistreatment of women, audiences wouldn’t be so quick to commend a domestic abuser who was recorded saying he hoped his then-girlfriend got “raped by a pack of n–.” But that’s the man people brought their children to see.

Plus, he shows zero remorse and takes no responsibility for his actions, as noted in a previous article by our own Vivian Kane:

He also blamed the police officer who recorded him, as well as the media that covered his rants by using actual quotes from actual audio transcripts.

He told Colbert, “It’s a pity that one has to be defined with a label from, you know, having a nervous breakdown in the back of a police car from a bunch of double tequilas, but that’s what it is. Now, you know, this is not—that moment shouldn’t define the rest of my life.”

He told Variety, ” I was loaded and angry and arrested. I was recorded illegally by an unscrupulous police officer who was never prosecuted for that crime. And then it was made public by him for profit, and by members of—we’ll call it the press. So, not fair. I guess as who I am, I’m not allowed to have a nervous breakdown, ever.”

Oh, you are allowed to have a nervous breakdown, but not to be a racist and anti-Semite. So audiences, they dropped the ball, and that says a lot about the public in general. They are willing to forgive even documented, unrepentant men for their crimes. Right now we are denouncing Kevin Spacey and others, but in ten years will they have a comedy revival and colleagues trying to get them cast in films again? If the public doesn’t care, then how will those with power care?

(via The Hollywood Reporter, image: SND Films)

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Princess Weekes
Princess (she/her-bisexual) is a Brooklyn born Megan Fox truther, who loves Sailor Moon, mythology, and diversity within sci-fi/fantasy. Still lives in Brooklyn with her over 500 Pokémon that she has Eevee trained into a mighty army. Team Zutara forever.