The Bechdel, Russo, and Race Test: Moon Lovers: Scarlet Heart Ryeo – Season 1, Episode 5

Wook openly flirted with Hae-Soo on Moon Lovers: Scarlet Heart Ryeo, episode 5, but Lady Hae did not mind. In fact, Lady Hae pushed for their relationship, and in a twist of Shakespearean fate, right after she so ardently advocated for this couple, she died while on a walk with Wook and Hae-Soo. Ugh, the feels.

The Bechdel, Russo, and Race Test

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

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Wook flirts with Hae-Soo and Baek-A confronts Hae-Soo about it.

Episode 5 did not pass the Russo test, and the episode did not pass this diversity test because there were no LGBTI characters in episode 5. The episode did, however, pass other diversity tests like the Bechdel and race test.

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While Hae-Soo and Wook are flirting, the end is approaching for Lady Hae.

Episode 5 passed the Bechdel test because there were a couple of named women in the episode and there was a single instance where two of these women talked to each other without mentioning men (Hae-Soo and Chae-Ryung, for example, talked to each other about soap).

As to the race test, episode 5 passed this diversity test because there were many instances where non-White individuals talked to each other without mentioning anyone White as the entire cast was Asian and none of the characters ever mentioned White individuals.

*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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