Movies

The Inexplicable ‘Karen’ Trailer Is Being Compared To Jordan Peele’s ‘Get Out’ — But Not In A Good Way

It’s been a rough few years for Karens as the name has become shorthand for “entitled white women.” It won’t be getting any easier with the release of Karen, an upcoming thriller starring Taryn Manning (Tiffany “Pennsatucky” Doggett from Orange is the New Black) as a “racist white woman who makes it her personal mission to displace the new Black family that has just moved in next door to her.” The trailer for the film, directed by Coke Daniels, was released last week, but it’s only captured the internet’s attention now.

Within the first minute of the trailer, Manning’s Karen tells her neighbors Malik and Imani, played by Cory Hardrict and Jasmine Burke, to “keep it down” in a restaurant; threatens to tell the manager; installs security cameras around her house; and uses the word “slaving” to describe Imani making food in the kitchen. Oh, and in case it wasn’t obvious, Imani literally says, “Wait a minute, we have a white entitled neighbor named Karen.”

Roll credits.

Karen is being compared on Twitter to Get Out, but not in the way you want to be compared to one of the most iconic films — horror or otherwise — in recent memory. “Jordan Peele only has two films under his belt as a director and he already has people trying to copy his formula. Talk about impact,” @nuffsaidny tweeted, while @BlackGirlCinema added, “It seems everyone has their Jordan Peele wig on lately. What he was able to do with Get Out was interesting for the time being but we really don’t need ‘Black folks being terrorized by racist whites’ to become a horror sub genre…”

Manning said she felt a “social responsibility to take on this role. Even if I had to play the villain to affect change around the globe, then I was more than willing to step into the role.” The actress is good at playing the villain in real life, too: she backed then-president Donald Trump’s decision to teargas peaceful protestors, many of whom were Black, so he could hold a Bible upside down. “I never pop political but I want to start by saying if I was being attacked the way everyone attacks him I would hold the HOLY BIBLE too. People can feel scared right now. Donald can feel scared too,” she wrote on Instagram before descending into QAnon nonsense. That is much scarier than anything in Karen.

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