okay so i haven’t really talked in detail yet about how what i’m most glad about with newt and hermann is what they entail w/r/t disability
hermann is very obviously disabled in the film, the first shot we see of him (it’s not actually the fight in the lift!! you can see him and newt arguing over a crate outside as the camera pans past them) he’s using his cane, and he maintains doing so throughout the film— when bad things happen, newt has to slow down a couple of times to let hermann catch up (which, btw, truly made me love him, because do you know how often people do that in real life to me, NOT MANY) like he is un-fucking-mistakeably disabled, and you know what? it matters, yeah, because when the world’s fucking ending he can’t run that fast, but it also doesn’t, because his worth in the shatterdome is predicated on the fact that he, like newt, is basically a weapon all by himself
and then novel canon cements newt as neuroatypical — ‘borderline manic personality’, so probably bipolar — so like, we’re talking about someone who would probably never be allowed to be a jaeger pilot, because speaking as someone who shares a brain with bipolar disorder, i would not want to mind-meld with someone and then operate heavy machinery. newt, like hermann, would not have worth in most action movies of this type. like, yeah, maybe they’d get to be comic relief and get to contribute some minor ~~~science thing~~~ of importance, but they wouldn’t be the focus. they wouldn’t be the motherfuckin’ heroes.
BUT IN THIS FILM, THEY ARE. of course, they’re not the heroes alone, but they get to do this terrifying amazing glorious thing, this thing they’re not even trained for, and the information they gather at great personal and mental and emotional and physical cost SAVES THE ENTIRE HUMAN RACE FROM EXTINCTION
also, they’re not punished for anything, and the moment where they come together to form a literal left brain/right brain organism is a lovely one. lots of films like this would take the TEACH THE NON-HEROES A LESSON!!! ARROGANCE IS BAD!!! but nooooope. actual scientist rockstars who mind-meld an alien and predict a double event with a chalkboard. they’re scared and physically small and ‘weak’ and they’re allowed to be all of these things, frightened and vulnerable and bleeding, and we aren’t supposed to respect them any less for having such human reactions, for having the reactions of the untrained in a war zone.
in this movie, a guy who walks with a cane and may well have done so since birth and a guy who clearly spends at least some of his time talking to himself at 3am while obsessively eating cereal and spinning through the emotional gamut like he’s a catherine wheel got to save the world, and you know what, other summer blockbusters try