The sun is up on the internet, which means the raging battle over the difference between “fans” and “assholes who feel unearned ownerships over things” is continuing to impotently rage. And it’s a well-trod battleground this weekend indeed, as Disney’s Star Wars Twitter account has just issued a note of support for recent hire Krystina Arielle, after the asshole hordes rose up against her for the unimaginable crime of…noting that systemic racism exists?
Arielle—who’s been a regular and delightful fixture in the nerdier spaces of the online ecosystem for a few years now—was recently hired by Disney to host Star Wars: The High Republic Show, a new webseries in which she’ll be interviewing creatives involved in Disney’s new initiative (including a new line of comics) to explore a period of Star Wars history dating 200 years before the original films. The issues began…well, the issues date back god knows how many years, and encompass the “fandom” and its reactions to Kelly Marie Tran, John Boyega, and more. But the current, specific issue cropped up when a a right-wing comics blog went hunting through Arielle’s old tweets after her new job was announced and found, again, some really shocking statements suggesting that white people sometimes act in racist ways, and that society seems literally custom-made to protect them from the consequences of those actions. Wild, controversial stuff, we know.
Anyway, this all provoked the typically depressing response from the sort of people who get their Wookiees bent out of shape when you point out that the Empire is a nation of literal space fascists and are, in fact, the baddies. On a slightly more positive note, it also brought to life the #IStandWithKrystina hashtag, in which numerous people online voiced their support for Arielle’s creativity, and humor, and willingness to speak depressingly straightforward truths to power. (It also probably helped push Disney into making an official statement, since the company’s been heavily criticized in recent years for being less than vocal or protective of its employees when the online baying gets bad.)
Anyway! Here’s some kick-ass Krystina Arielle content, including her performance on a Critical Role Honey Heist game in which she brought the indelible Bearah Pawcett to life.