The Bechdel, Russo, and Race Test: The Master’s Sun – Season 1, Episode 12

On The Master’s Sun, episode 12, Kong-Sil encountered the ghost of a child, and when she learned that the mother of the child didn’t know that her son was dead, Kong-Sil attempted to find the child’s remains.

The Bechdel, Russo, and Race Test

Episode 12 passed the race test but did not pass the Bechdel or Russo test.

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After being fatally wounded by the ghost child’s killer, Joong-Won visits Kong-Sil as a spirit and he says his goodbyes.

Episode 12 passed the race test, and the episode easily passed this test because only non-White individuals ever talked to each other (the entire cast of episode 12 was Asian) and none of the characters ever mentioned White people. As to the Bechdel and Russo test, episode 12 did not pass either of these tests.

Episode 12 did not pass the Russo test because there were no LGBTI characters in episode 12, and the episode did not pass the Bechdel test because while there were a couple of instances where named women talked to each other, men were always mentioned.

*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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