Yet the most fricking emetic feature of Foodfight! are, IMOHO, a pair of secondary characters who embody negative stereotypes. To begin with, this cumshot of an ENT schnoz:
Dr. Si Nustrix, mascot for some fictional nasal over-the-counter drug.
And 80% schnoz (Yiddish for "nose," a word used of the large aquiline nose of stereotypical Jews).
As you can see, he is a caricature of a Jew, resembling Nazi depictions of Hebrew people. He looks like the "Jewshrooms" on the cover of Third Reich-era German storybook Der Giftpilz (The Poison Mushroom).
Si Nustrix also speaks with a nasal voice, fitting for such a schnoz, and has a neurotic/angsty personality.
In contrast, here's Yadoa, the old scholar and one of Princess Chamsous-Sabah's many tutors.
A man of the world who has seen and suffered a lot,
speaker of many languages and keeper of eldritch knowledge.
This is what a Jew should rather look like in fiction.
The only clues about his heritage are the fact that he speaks Hebrew (which he lectures his young ward in) and the Star of David on his study wall.
As he explains in French, his mother tongue: « Nous venons du même pays mais comme mon arrière-arrière-grand-père était né au loin, on me traitait d’étranger et on me tourmentait. J’ai dû me réfugier ici, où je poursuis mes recherches et j’enseigne le grec et l’hébreu à la princesse Chamsous Sabah. »
(He also sees great potential in his disciple: (« Tout l’intéresse, elle est aussi intelligente que jolie, élevée avec les meilleurs précepteurs des quatre coins du monde et parle plusieurs langues. »)
If you have forgotten her own backstory: un personnage courageux et intrépide féminin. Elle est toujours vaillante, et son optimisme est de taille à tout surmonter: « Tous les hommes de ma famille ont été empoisonnés ou tués au combat, soit avec des ennemis soit entre eux. C’est triste. Oui mais il ne faut pas l’être, on n’en finirait pas. C’est à notre tour de vivre et d’être utiles. » Quand on demande à la princesse si la couleur de ses yeux ne la dérange pas, elle parle d’« enfantillages ».
For a positive depiction of a present-day Jew, Howard Wolowitz from The Big Bang Theory appears to be the best candidate. A US Jew who is also a NASA space engineer, suave and tenderhearted. Howard is a tad eccentric and a polyglot like Yadoa above...
In short: Nasal Jew: wrong. NASA (or royal scholar) Jew: right.
To return to Foodfight! and its offensive stereotypical secondary characters:
Vlad Chocul, ersatz Count Chocula (mascot for a breakfast cereal similar to Chocapic, with choco-marshmallows in it)... and gay stereotype, as seen by his flamboyant and effeminate personality. He wears sharp attire in pastel colours, makes theatrical asides as if he were acting on a stage, and lisps, no less. And he is made of chocolate. In short, Vlad Chocul incarnates the "queen" stereotypes, which are as offensive as the ones depicting the Jewish schnoz and nasal voice.
"Homosexual men are often equated interchangeably with heterosexual women by the heterocentric mainstream and are frequently stereotyped as being effeminate, despite the fact that gender expression, gender identity, and sexual orientation are widely accepted to be distinct from each other. The "flaming queen" is a characterization that melds flamboyance and effeminacy, remaining a gay male stock character in Hollywood. Theatre, specifically musicals, are a component of another stereotype, the "show queen", generalizing that gay men listen to show tunes, are involved with the performing arts, and are theatrical, overly dramatic, and campy."
Appearance and mannerisms
Gay men are often associated with a lisp or a feminine speaking tone. Fashion and effeminacy have long been seen as stereotypes of homosexuality. They are often based on the visibility of the reciprocal relationship between gay men and fashion. There is also the stereotype that most gay men enjoy shopping. A limp wrist is also a mannerism associated with gay men.
Recent research has suggested that “gaydar” is an alternate label for using stereotypes, especially those related to appearance and mannerisms, to infer orientation.
But queer characters can also be done right, by showing them as people (just like Yadoa and Howard when it comes to Judaism, look above). Ser Loras Tyrell, or Ymir and Christa, are much more than stereotypes: they're young people with their hopes, their anxieties, their traumatic experiences... whose coming of age is explored in detail. Their sexuality is just one of the many traits that makes each of these characters unique and a fully rounded person.