Ricky September (spoilers for Dot and Bubble)

It feels like people are assuming “X character likely isn’t a white supremacist unless otherwise specified” instead of “X character from a white supremacist society likely is a white supremicisr unless otherwise specified” and Ricky September was not otherwise specified

It’s an issue of default assumptions. Ricky as a character doesn’t tell us anything either way, so the strongest (and only) indicator we have of his views are those of the society he comes from, which are deeply racist. Since he doesn’t deny them, the idea that a random member of a society agrees with the majority opinion isn’t unreasonable


But equally people may be headcannoning him as racist on the basis of the society he lives in and the prevalent opinions. As Bill says, there is enough in the episode that says we should be sympathetic towards him as oppose to Lindy who even when we don’t know she’s a massive racist, we aren’t really supposed to like very much as her attitudes at the very least are ‘spoilt rich kid’.


Again, that feels like “he can’t be racist because he’s nice and likeable” which is extremely false. The simple fact of him being there means he’s also a ‘spoilt rich kid’


@NyssaUnbound is making some really good points. The setting should have you having to prove him not being racist, not the other way around. Maybe you should ask yourself why it’s so important to you that he be good?


I feel uncomfortable saying somebody is something just because of where they are. That seems like the sort of generalisation that is often used to justify any sort of ‘ism’.

Not saying either of you are wrong in your interpretation just that, clearly from the difference of opinion over this, there is nuance here which is worthy of interpretation.


But what proof do you have that he is racist aside from ‘where he is from’?


Are we watching the same episode?
Simply assuming the worst of people due to their surroundings I simply don’t understand.

It’s not important to me in the slightest to “prove” that he isn’t a racist, but we can only analyze from what is presented to us on the screen and none of his lines indicate racist behaviour.


We’re not talking about immutable characteristics, we’re talking about beliefs, which are subject to change. We know the society he was raised in, we know what he was raised to believe. It’s certainly possible he’s changed, but we’re given no indication that he’s done so. Headcanoning that he’s not racist requires making an additional, extra-textual assumption as opposed to headcanoning that he is racist (the assumotion that somewhere along the way he rejected the narrative that his society told him as opposed to the default where he didn’t).

It’s possible he could have changed, but we’re given nothing onscreen to imply that this is the case. While you certainly can headcanon that offscreen he rejected the racism he was brought up with, that’s another hoop you have to jump through. The fact that so many people have done so leads me to wonder why? Why is it so important that the nice, friendly, likeable one isn’t racist?

The idea that only mean, unpleasant people can be bigots is actively dangerous, as there are pleanty of real-life horrible, dangerous people who hide behind charisma and personality


But I would argue that we are given that indication - the whole point of his character is that he doesn’t engage with the bubble beyond uploading a silly video each day and then disconnecting and reading and stuff.

But I totally get what you say about horrible people hiding behind charisma and personality - those people are hugely dangerous. It’s just not what I get from Ricky’s characterisation.


This reminds me of the meme about the milkshake duck.

The whole internet loves Milkshake Duck, a lovely duck that drinks milkshakes! 5 seconds later We regret to inform you the duck is racist

We are arguing about a fictional character who has a few minutes of screen time.

For all we know, Jackie Tyler is a massive racist, she just doesn’t talk about it much.

I don’t think it really helps to discuss this about someone who is fictional. There is no right answer, it can be interpreted many ways.


We all have different life experiences that shape our beliefs. Nyssa and I have experiences that lead us to be more cautious, while Bill and Delta have experiences that lead them to be more forgiving. I think at this point we’ve proven neither side is going to be convinced by the other, and at this point we’re just going in circles. Let’s agree to disagree and not spend any more time and energy arguing the matter.


That’s fair and no one is wrong in this case. I’m just glad we’ve been able to have this discussion in a calm, fair manner and hopefully this is a demonstration of the sort of community we want to build here. One where ideas can be challenged but never ridiculed and one where, maybe, some of us might even change our viewpoints.

I know the unconscious bias of this episode struck me big time when I realised I hadn’t even noticed none of Lindy’s friends were non-white and that definitely made me feel a bit uncomfortable - as it should do.

Thank you to everyone for keeping this civil.


I didn’t try to convince you of anything. We don’t have to agree, but questioning people who have different experiences and viewpoints is one of the best ways to gain insight you yourself might not have :slightly_smiling_face:
Right, I got to go make dinner and spend the evening when the kids are asleep watching The Monster of Peladon :grin:


Yeah, we’re definitely brushing up on the limits of this fictional character (and we’re almost certainly far beyond the level of thought RTD put into writing him). While I’m sure we could keep going, I don’t think we’d uncover anything new


Sort of kind of off topic but this discussion right here makes me love this site and forum even more

The fact that we can discuss things, have these different viewpoints and talk about it like civilized people and not get on each other or insult one another. Gives me faith in this fandom.