What’s up with Disney’s obsession with tampons?
Remember “Big Hero 6”? Two weeks ago, Disney released its long-anticipated sequel to the beloved 2014 animated superhero film onto Disney Plus, and it’s gosh-awful. “Baymax!” is the illegitimate love child of the most virulent form of corporate virtue signaling and the equitable bigotry we refer to as “wokeness.” With “Baymax!” everything people like about family films, superhero flicks, and good taste has been replaced with brain-dead Fortune 500 PSAs about female hygiene and why you shouldn’t swallow your earbuds. More proof that Disney doesn’t understand the first thing about its consumers, especially why so many families are either angry or tapping out from Disney forever.
‘Baymax!’ Flops After Successful ‘Big Hero 6’
“Baymax!” follows “Big Hero 6,” this time with six short films about 10 minutes apiece. If you don’t remember the original, I heartily recommend it. The film revolves around a teenage Hiro Hamada, who receives a giant inflatable medical robot from his late brother, code name Baymax, and how he and his team of young tech-bros slowly become a superhero team and overcome their own worst fears while doing it. When it came out in 2014, “Big Hero 6” earned more than $657.8 million worldwide to become the top-earning animated feature film that year. Yet despite that success (and it being a Marvel movie no less), Disney never delivered a true sequel. Until last week, that is.
Viewers like me, who loved the original, were left confused and frustrated with “Baymax!” when instead of more adventures with their favorite robot Stay Puft Marshmallow Man, they found a series of boring lectures from a cast of cardboard cut-outs who are unable to comprehend the back of a box of Kotex without it being explained to them by one of those car-dealership inflatables.
Patronization in Every Episode
We’ve been here before, gang, and recently. Think back to March, remember “Turning Red”? “Baymax!” is a worse, dumbed-down version of that insipid menstruation allegory, but without the cool fantasy elements and giant panda monster. You get more wokeness, more pandering, more highlighting of feminine hygiene products, and less emphasis on fun.
What do I mean? In episode three, “Sofia,” Baymax assists a young girl in dealing with her first period. Thus, in a fully budgeted cartoon made for children, we get a scene with Baymax shopping in a crowded feminine hygiene aisle at a local pharmacy. Baymax is paralyzed with indecision from so many choices, until a helpful group of men and women, including one trans person, all excitedly recommend their favorite menstruation products.
Grown men, standing together. In a tampon aisle. Discussing their favorite brand of tampons, as we all know men are wont to do…
But wait, there’s more. In the episode “Cass,” Baymax must instruct the hot aunt of the series about why you shouldn’t work when you have a broken leg. In “Mbita,” a fish food truck cook must be told what an allergic reaction is and instructed to recognize his gay attraction to the applesauce food cart broheim. In another, “Yachi,” Baymax teaches a cat why it’s a bad idea to swallow an earbud. And in my favorite case of “what were they thinking” in the episode “Kiko,” Baymax tries to forcibly remove an older woman’s fear of water via unwanted desensitization until she realizes her fear was about the emotional connection to the pool all along.
Disney, the family company.
Disney Is Out of Touch with Its Audience
So why pay attention to yet another Disney Plus disaster? Because it’s instructive of how Disney doesn’t understand who their audience really is. We often assume wokeness is political in its aims or motivated by malice. But sometimes — as seen with “Baymax!” — we have the clearest evidence yet that the source may be blind rot.
In 2014, with “Big Hero 6,” Disney understood that to get family dollars, they had to make quality entertainment. In 2022, Disney believes that to empty your wallet, they must insult and infantilize you. It’s not just that Disney wants to control your kids; they don’t know who your kids are. Nor do executives at Disney understand that 99 percent of human beings do not want to talk about menstruation or other bodily functions no matter how important destigmatizing said functions might be.
“Baymax!” is currently sitting on a perfect 100 percent rating from Rotten Tomatoes, which neither “Stranger Things 4” nor “Citizen Kane” enjoys. So Disney is pushing overtime to get its
shills entertainment journalist friends to make sure this show doesn’t fail. Yet, the audience’s reactions seem to be either bored or angry. I have yet to read a single positive post on Facebook, hear word of mouth, or read any positive reviews from audience members on sites like Rotten Tomatoes or Metacritic outside of the corporate boilerplate bots that are easier to pick out than red paint on a white picket fence. People do not like this show. Folks on the left pretend they do, but they don’t watch.
“Baymax!” should be avoided like the plague. It’s a bad show because it has all the subtlety of a B-episode of Captain Planet while it forces a wheat-thin and ugly morality upon its viewers with storytelling as deep as an evaporated puddle. It’s a bad show because it’s been created by a mega-corporation that thinks an average family of five can afford a $5,000-a-night vacation at their Star Wars hotel. Yes, big corporations do insult their audiences — not necessarily because they hate them but because they don’t know who they are. If Disney fails to learn this lesson, the entertainment giant and others like it should expect many more parents to turn their backs on them, maybe for good.