The Bechdel, Russo, and Race Test: Oh My Venus – Season 1, Episode 5

Joo-Eun and Young-Ho went down to the police station in Oh My Venus, episode 5 to press charges against Joo-Eun’s stalker, but the police told Joo-Eun that there was no substantial evidence of a crime being committed, and to add insult onto injury, they basically told her she was fat so there was no possible way that the guy was actually stalking her. Joo-Eun’s stalker was thus let off scotch free, and afraid to return to her home, Joo-Eun moved in with Young-Ho.

The Bechdel, Russo, and Race Test

Episode 5 did not pass the Bechdel or Russo test but it did pass the race test.

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Joo-Eun asks Young-Ho about his ideal type.

Episode 5 passed the race test, and the episode passed this test because the entire cast was Asian and White people were rarely mentioned so there were plenty of instances where non-White individuals talked to each other without mentioning White people.

As to the Bechdel test, episode 5 did not pass this test, and the episode did not pass this test because while there were a couple of occasions where named women talked to each other, men were always mentioned. The episode also failed to pass the Russo test, and the episode did not pass this test because there were no LGBTI characters in the episode.

*The Bechdel test entails three requirements:
1. It has to have at least two (named) women in it
2. Who talk to each other
3. About something besides a man

**The Vito Russo test entails three requirements:
1. The show contains a character that is identifiably lesbian, gay, bisexual, intersex and/or transgender
2. The character must not be solely or predominately defined by her sexual orientation, gender identity and/or as being intersex
3.The character must be tied into the plot in such a way that her removal would have a significant effect

***The race or people of color (POC) test has three requirements:
1. It has two people of color in it
2. Who talk to each other
3. About something other than a White person

****Just because a show passes the Bechdel, Russo and race test does not mean that it is not sexist, heterosexist, racist and/or cissexist, etc. The Bechdel, Russo and race test is only a bare minimum qualifier for the representation of LGBTI individuals, women and people of color in television. The failure to pass these tests also does not identify whether the central character was a woman, a person of color or a LGBTQI individual and it does not dictate the quality of the show.

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