Today, the NZ Herald published a gem of an interview with Shortland Street actor Ben Mitchell, wherein he restated his bizarre, unpleasant views about contemporary gender roles. I say restated because this is not the first time he has strongly voiced his proudly misogynist opinions.
Shortland St occupies a unique place in this country’s self-image, due to both its age and popularity. Its stars are this country’s only true celebrities, and fans frequently fuse the actors with their on-screen roles. My editor got confused a while back when he reprimanded Brodie Kemp for partying at the Cleo Bachelor of the Year party a while back mere hours after breaking poor wee Bella Cooper’s young heart. I’m guilty of it too, I recall being shocked at age 11 to see Judy Brownlee with a trolley full of steak one time at Foodtown. It was confusing, Judy seemed way too uptight and lonely to eat that much steak.
In that spirit, we took the best bits of Ben Mitchell’s interviews and matched them with the evolving opinions of TK Samuels’ adoring forum fans on Ferndale Talk, “a fan thread for you to discuss your love of all things TK!”
Warrior Pixie: “How awesome is this guy? Is he not the man of every woman’s dreams? The perfect husband to whom all boyfriends should be measured against? He’s so supportive and loving.”
Ben: “A bossy woman reminds a man of a nagging mum. Not cool.”
RBNZ: “He is quite the catch, isn’t he? Smart, loyal, and caring.”
Ben: “If a woman is bossy to me I think she wants to [sleep with me]. It’s a masculine trait. It’s not in a woman’s inherent state.”
RBNZ: “You know, I don’t usually condone violence, and I was all for him being the bigger man and controlling his anger but I was soooooooooooo happy when he finally laid a punch on that Maxwell’s smug little face.”
Ben: “A bossy man is much easier to deal with than a bossy woman. You’d tell a man chill out or you’d punch him in the head.”
Warrior Pixie: “….TK’s getting on my goat a bit at the moment.”
Ben: “Every man is looking for the good woman behind the successful man, aren’t they?”
RBNZ: “He has turned into a smug little douche lately. I don’t really like his character anymore…”
Ben: “Bikes are for children, you need to step up from adolescence.”
ssfan: “I’m not a fan anymore either – he’s so smug and arrogant these days.”
Ben: “Everyone’s dispensable. Except me, just joking.”
Kam: “Cool? Being pigheaded, arrogant and a chauvinistic pig is cool?”
Ben: “These may be old-fashioned principles but they are old-fashioned for a reason.”
RBNZ: “He keeps getting worse and worse recently. It is hard to watch…”
Ben: “I look for loyalty, a woman who makes me feel powerful, doesn’t take my shit too seriously and empowers me physically, spiritually and emotionally. It’s not that hard”
Warrior Pixie: “Now he’s just a complete tool, why would any woman want that asshole?”
The Spinoff Weekly compiles the best stories of the week – an essential guide to modern life in New Zealand, emailed out on Monday evenings.