Nyle DiMarco was hopeful when a close friend's deaf brother was cast in Netflix's upcoming film Sierra Burgess Is a Loser, excited to see a deaf character played by a deaf actor, a good step towards better representation. But this week the actor, model and activist took to Twitter to express his disappointment in the film's "terrible" treatment of deafness. In the film, the titular Sierra Burgess — played by Stranger Things star Shannon Purser — pretends to be deaf to trick a boy she has a crush on.
So one of my close friends' deaf brother is in Sierra Burgess
When I learned, I was elated. Finally more deaf actors/representation & ASL inclusion in films
... Only to find out the deaf character was written and used for a terrible joke.
PS- pretending to be deaf is NOT ok.
— Nyle DiMarco (@NyleDiMarco) September 9, 2018
DiMarco isn't the only person calling out Sierra Burgess, and the film's treatment of it's deafness isn't the only issue people have with the film. Several Twitter users called out the movie for a scene in which the main character is offended when a classmate assumes she's a lesbian.
im genuinely so disappointed about sierra burgess is a loser. we all hyped it up thinking it was gonna be a beautiful representation & self confidence movie and it turned out to be a transphobic, homophobic and making fun of serious disorders mess.
— andrea (@corygruuter) September 7, 2018