The Bechdel, Russo, and Race Test: Madame Antoine – Season 1, Episode 8

On Madame Antoine, episode 8, Hye-Rim and Soo-Hyun began dating (despite some reluctance on Hye-Rim’s part), and the two kicked off their new relationship with a bang (i.e., Soo-Hyun acted all awkward and Hye-Rim was frustrated with and distrustful of Soo-Hyun).

The Bechdel, Russo, and Race Test

Episode 8 did not pass the Russo test but it did pass the Bechdel and race test.

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Hye-Rim has a drink (or five) with Seung-Chan.

Episode 8 did not pass the Russo test, and the episode did not pass this test because there were no LGBTI characters in the episode. The episode did, however, pass the Bechdel and race test.

Named women talked to each other a couple of times in episode 8, and while men were sometimes mentioned when named women talked to one another, there were also some instances where named women talked to each other without mentioning men so the episode passed the Bechdel test.

As to the race test, episode 8 passed this test because while the entirely Asian cast of episode 8 did occasionally mention White people, there were also many instances where non-White individuals talked to each other without mentioning White people.

*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.