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Harmless comic characters or racist robots? The buzz over the summer blockbuster "Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen" only grew Wednesday as some said two jive-talking Chevy characters were racial caricatures.
Skids and Mudflap, twin robots disguised as compact hatchbacks, constantly brawl and bicker in rap-inspired street slang. They're forced to acknowledge that they can't read. One has a gold tooth.
"It's one thing when robot cars are racial stereotypes," he said, "but the movie also had a bucktoothed black guy who is briefly in one scene who's also a stereotype." "They're like the fools," said 18-year-old Nicholas Govede, also of New York City. "The comic relief in a degrading way."
"It's done in fun," he said. "I don't know if it's stereotypes — they are robots, by the way. These are the voice actors. This is kind of the direction they were taking the characters and we went with it." Bay said the twins' parts "were kind of written but not really written, so the voice actors is when we started to really kind of come up with their characters."