How Netflix Original "October Faction" Starts a Conversation about PC Culture

Let’s talk about PC Culture. No, not the personal computers. I’m talking about political correctness. Honestly, I had no idea what the term PC culture meant when I heard it, but of course I’ve heard of political correctness. According to Encyclopedia Britannica, political correctness is defined as “a term used to refer to the language that seems intended to give the least amount of offense, especially when describing groups identified by external markers such as race, gender, culture, or sexual orientation.” 

I was watching and reading reviews from the Netflix original series “October Faction” when I heard the term. “October Faction” is a new series from one of my favorite TV show creators, Damien Kindler (I LOVE him). It is based off the comic book series of the same name by Steve Wiles and Damien Worm. Now, I’m all for Netflix’s abundance of original TV shows and movies. I love Netflix. Netflix is the KING of streaming services (my opinion)! But some Netflix originals miss the mark for me and when this happens, I like to look at the reviews from other viewers and see what they’re thinking. What does this have to do with PC culture? Well, more than half of the reviews were from people saying how much they hated it in the show, how they thought it was ridiculous, how political correctness was ruining the show and how it was trash. Now, I must admit: October Faction is kind of bad (sorry Damien!). The acting is not my fave, the storyline didn’t seem to be going anywhere and I was struggling to get through the episodes. I’m on episode six and it’s really hard to continue for me although I really want to see it through and give it a chance. But I digress. 

Person holding a remote with a Netflix screen background

I started to get upset at the fact that so many were saying that the show was mainly hard to watch because of all the “political correctness.” I don’t know that I would call what October Faction was doing “political correctness” in the very sense of the definition I provided above. I didn’t feel as if the show was walking on eggshells and trying to avoid offending anyone. 

The show does try to create a massive representation for many of the groups of people that are discriminated against and marginalized. It tries to be “woke” if you will. The original characters in the comic book series were both white parents with white children, but in the show they decided to have an interracial couple with biracial children. The show starts off with experiences of racism, LGBTQA, bullying, homophobia and interracialism. To me, both versions are perfectly fine. I’m not bothered by either choice. I’m not the creator. And I’m not being a hater because of the over abundance of representation of people that actually exist in life and of their experiences.

But the show does practically throw it all in your face. In my opinion, it’s not done in a way that comes off as natural like what we see in real life, but in a way that says “being woke is cool, we want to be cool, today’s generation of kids are into being woke, so let’s overload with wokeness.” There are many shows and movies that I love that tell people’s stories in a way that feels true to what the world is experiencing. In a way that doesn’t feel so forced. But when you're butthurt over seeing a black and white couple with biracial children, seeing how racism looks from the perspective of the victims, or how bullying and homophobia looks from the perspective of the victims, there’s probably something wrong with YOU. Seeing a show like October Faction and all it’s cliche wokeness should start a conversation about the experiences of others. I’m not sure saying “So what?” “who cares” or “woke trash” to racism, homophobia, interacial couples, biracial children, and racial and gender discrimination is a great way to make real people who are experiencing situations like this feel heard. And neither does calling it “political correctness.” Being upset and angry at the fact that the racial, ethnic, and gender identities were changed to people who are underrepresented screams that you’re probably a racist, mysogynistic and/or homophobic. You can be either or be all take your pick. But don’t hide it by saying that it’s the show’s fault for using “political correctness'' and “ruining the show.” 

Shows like this bring up internal feelings for you that can start conversations about whether or not what you’re feeling is rooted in racism, misogyny or homophobia. Seeing representation as “political correctness” and therefore a barrier to your “free speech” is definitely a red flag of IGNORANCE. I’m watching the show and I’m not angry at the creators attempt at representation or their silly “wokeness” concept although I wish they’d done a better job at representing the people that experience such things and not so much in a way that comes off as cliche.