Article by: Nazariy Zanoz
Ukrainians learn badly from their mistakes. To ban movies and series with Mikhail Porechenkov which openly glorify and celebrate the Russian weaponry, army, intelligence, outlook on history and so forth, we had to wait until he finally started shooting at our military defending Donetsk airport.
If this had not happened or simply if Porechenkov’s satisfied face had not been recorded by video cameras, it is quite possible that Ukrainian media would still be broadcasting movies and TV series with him.
On November 16, in Donetsk, Russian ‘stars’ are to perform at yet another trash circus, including Yury Loza, Elena Vayenga and Ivanushki International. Ukrainian state security warns them that they may become personae non grata in Ukraine if they do perform, as if supporting the terrorists isn’t enough.
The Baltic states are a different story. Their governments react instantaneously. Latvia immediately declared a Russian actor persona non grata. They behave like smart people are supposed to: learning from others’ mistakes. Which is why Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia have been NATO and EU members for ten years.
Ukraine continues to postpone the already signed Association Agreement. All this accounts for the opinion of the mad Kremlin aggressor, in fear that he will begin a full-scale war. If he wants to, he will do it. But this will definitely not happen over banning Russian TV series and other trash stemming from their mass culture. Their troops have been on Ukrainian territory for a long time already.
Despite this, despite the war, Ukrainian channels’ airtime is full of Russian TV series, programs and concerts. Their characters openly repeat Russian myths and propagate the false ideas of the ‘Russian world’ from the screens.
All of these programs, mostly movies, frequently present the traditional stereotype of a Ukrainian in the Russian chauvinist culture: a greedy, cowardly, salo-eating traitor. Frequently, Ukrainian actors happily play such roles.
Ukrainian media executives just shrug their shoulders citing ratings and the people are happy to consume it all. It seems that the government and a part of the society don’t get that it is time to get rid of all kinds of Russian influence: in the economy, in politics and in culture.
Ukraine’s policies in all spheres have to be carried out in a way not to be dependent or oriented towards Russia’s opinion in any way. For it not to interest us at all. For various Putins not to be able to influence everything what is happening in Kyiv.
For this, we have to distance ourselves from the crazy neighbor, maximally rid ourselves of their cultural influence and reorient ourselves towards the domestic market and Europe. Put a wall between us and “Eurasia” both physically and mentally.
So many fateful events happened in Ukraine, so many potential plot lines can be found everywhere, that its cultural products, such as books, movies, series, visual art etc., cannot help but interest the global community, which has been fearfully and reverently following the events in Kyiv and Donbas for almost a year. We need just a little skillful cultural management to send everything down the right path, and good promotion.
What about Russia? Russia should be of no concern to us after all this. It should isolate itself to make sense of itself. Stay one-on-one with what it did.
To destroy the Berlin Wall, first we had to build it. To destroy the wall between Ukraine and Russia, we have to erect it first. And only destroy it when Russia is mature enough to become a part of Europe.