On The Bold Type Season 1 Episode 4, Jane experienced her first orgasm and was invited to speak at a writers’ panel, while Kat got into some legal trouble during a night out with Adena. It was… very controversial, to say the least.
Join TV Fanatics Yana Grebenyuk, Allison Nichols, Ariana, Samantha from Tell-Tale TV, and Canary Sisters’ Editor-in-Chief Jay Ruymann as they discuss the episode’s twists and the future of The Bold Type.
Did Jane disappoint you by not interrupting the “mansplainer” at the panel?
Yana: No. Watching that made me pretty anxious just imagining myself in that kind of situation. I don’t think it would look good for Jane or Scarlet if she tried to interrupt him and it backfired even worse. Everyone else there had a bit more experience and I’m sure they were aware of that enough to stand up for themselves like Jane just couldn’t yet. And it was horrible but I think Jane got a point across that mattered, and that moment was documented for all to see. If I saw that with someone in real life, I would know what opinion to form about which panelist.
Allison: Not really because I would have done exactly the same thing in her shoes. It’s not like she didn’t try to join the conversation. She did, and the guy was a jerk. It would have been bad if she had her one line and never tried to participate in the conversation again, but that’s not what happened. Like Yana said, having her cut him off could have backfired and made her and Scarlet look worse.
Ariana: No, she definitely didn’t disappoint me. Of course as I was watching I was internally screaming, hoping Jane would speak up and put the pompous mansplainer in his place; but it’s not always that simple, and it wasn’t her fault that she was persistently interrupted. Jane is inexperienced when it comes to public speaking, particularly in regards to politics, and anyone in her shoes could’ve easily been intimidated, nervous, or just not quite comfortable asserting themselves yet. I think the most important takeaway from this is that it showcased how second nature it is for men to often overpower or suppress women and their voices. That’s what’s disappointing.
And as the wise Melora Hardman said, “Doesn’t matter how much you say, it’s what you say!”
Doesn't matter how much you say… it's WHAT you say! Be mindful #theboldtypechat
— Melora Hardin (@MeloraHardin) July 26, 2017
Samantha: I’m on the same page as everyone else here, Jane definitely didn’t upset me and I can’t blame her at all. I think she did a great job and she handled it well and what she did get to say was powerful. The mansplainer made himself look like exactly what he was, a mansplainer, while Jane looked like a competent, rising writer.
Jay: Disappointed? Maybe a little. I would’ve loved to see Jane take down the mansplainer and get what she had to say out there, but unfortunately, if she had, there’s the chance it could’ve backfired on her and Scarlet and left a bad taste in everyone’s mouths for Jane as a writer. I think what she did say was insightful, which is why it resonated with viewers of the panel.
What do you think of the altercation with Adena, Kat, and the man on the street? Should Adena have stayed with Kat, despite her personal problems? Consider the fact that Kat is also a non-straight woman of color, does this change your answer?
Yana: I saw both sides of this conversation happening yesterday and I think both have merit. I’m not one to speak on what Kat or Adena should be doing, or the women in real life situations that have to deal with this on a much grander scale. But Adena clearly knew what would happen and she tried not to make it worse for herself which makes so much sense. Kat was very angry at that guy and by her own choice decided to punch him, I doubt she thought it would go as far as getting arrested though. That is creating a conversation all on its own that also deserves plenty of attention. Basically, the guy was an asshole and I’m glad both Kat and Adena made it out of the situation safe and sound.
Allison: Both sides have merit, and I am in no position to tell either girl what she should have done. I love that The Bold Type presented this situation to us and allowed for both sides to be shown. It’s definitely an interesting conversation topic. The other question that I find interesting about this scenario is whether or not Kat should have respected Adena’s wishes and left the jerk alone.
Yes, the guy was an absolute ass, but his comments were toward Adena, and when Kat stuck up for her, Adena told Kat to leave it alone and just keep walking. At that point, I do not think Adena was aware that cops were nearby (don’t know for sure though), so it’s not as if Adena was telling Kat to leave the guy alone because of her fear of the police getting involved.
I’m not saying what Kat did was wrong by any means, but I am curious as to whether or not people think she should’ve respected Adena’s wishes. For me, I think she should have listened to Adena and kept walking, but honestly I’m not brave enough to stand up to a jerk like that, especially a guy who could easily beat me up.
Ariana: I think The Bold Type did an excellent job at shining a light on a very prevalent issue in today’s America. Even though this was a relatively minor incident, compared to what it could’ve been, the principle is the same, and it got the conversation started. I don’t think anyone should blame Adena for looking out for herself. Her fight or flight responses kicked in and she made the best decision she could at the time. Adena said it best herself, she is a Muslim lesbian, and she could’ve easily faced deportation and other serious repercussions due to the actions of others.
This situation, however, isn’t black and white.
Kat is also a (non-hetero) woman of color, and the situation that arose with the man and the officers could’ve played out drastically worse than it did. That being said, it’s important to keep in mind that if things would’ve turned out differently, it wouldn’t have been any fault of Adena’s, regardless of if she could’ve chosen differently. Overall, asking these types of questions, and stirring up this kind of conversation, was the ultimate goal of the scene, regardless of how it all unfolded. In my opinion this was the most significant part of the episode, and a key component of why I fell in love with The Bold Type.
Samantha: So much happened in that scene and it raises awareness to so many issues, particularly rampant racism. I don’t think Adina should have done anything differently. She was in the middle of getting her visa renewed and any altercation with the police could’ve jeopardized that or worse, gotten her deported immediately. Meanwhile, Kat was also in an incredibly dangerous situation as a young black woman being interrogated by an angry white man and two cops.
I do agree with Allison and would like to hear if people would’ve wanted Kat to just let it go as Adena asked. I think if I had been in the situation I definitely would have stood up to the asshole harassing my friend, but I doubt I would’ve had the guts to actually punch him. And while he definitely deserved it, it wasn’t the smartest choice on Kat’s part. Either way, I’m glad that Jaqueline was there to come get Kat (boss goals, life goals) and that she was able to help Kat see Adena’s perspective.
Jay: As I was writing this question, I was going down the path that Allison did, which is, “What if Kat had just let it go?” It wasn’t her place to become aggressive and violent toward Adena’s aggressor. All of this could’ve been avoided if Kat had backed down and walked away, like Adena asked her to.
I understand why Adena left, and I understand why Kat felt the need to stand up for her friend. It’s hard to back down from a situation like that, but sometimes it’s necessary. In this society, which it’s surprising Kat doesn’t quite understand in some ways (as she was going to tweet about Adena being held in her home country, and assaulting a white man on the street), it’s easier to back down and walk away than to risk being shot for being right in a situation.