The Bechdel, Russo, and Race Test: Cheese in the Trap – Season 1, Episode 15

In-Ha was a foot on Cheese in the Trap, episode 15, and she did her best to manipulate Jung and his father to her favor. Her efforts, however, failed due to Jung’s own machinations, and as a result of her failure, In-Ha was disowned by Jung’s father and Seol was hit by a car.

The Bechdel, Russo, and Race Test

Episode 15 passed race test, but it did not pass the Bechdel or Russo test.

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In-Ha pushes Seol into the street, and as a result, Seol is hit by a car.

Episode 15 passed the race test, and the episode easily passed this test because there were many instances where non-White individuals talked to each other without mentioning White people as the cast was primarily Asian (there were a few White individuals in episode 15). Episode 15 did not, however, pass the Bechdel test.

There were a couple of named women in episode 15 and there were a few instances in the episode where some of these named women talked to each other, but episode 15 did not pass the Bechdel test because whenever named women talked to each other, men were mentioned. Episode 15 also failed to pass the Russo test, and the episode did not pass this test because while there was one LGBTI character in episode 15, child Joo-Yong, and he wasn’t defined by his sexual orientation (in fact, he wasn’t defined by anything), his removal from the episode wouldn’t have significantly affected the plot of episode 15 as he was barely in the episode and he didn’t add anything to the episode’s plot.

*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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