Sean Penn has been accused of domestic abuse on more than one occasion.
We're just gonna ahead and put that out there before we delve into the details of the following story.
On Monday morning, Sean Penn and Natascha McElhone spoke to The Today Show about their new Hulu drama, The First.
The series centers on a dangerous mission to Mars and it includes a number of strong female character, including three astronauts and even the President of the United States.
McElhone, for example, portrays an unapologetic visionary overseeing the mission -- and she explained on air how the fictional character was informed by the ongoing #MeToo movement.
"I don't see that as aberrant," McElhone says. "I get that in TV and in a lot of our media women haven't been depicted in that way, and I find that deeply disturbing."
Seems like a simple enough statement, right?
How can one take issue with an actress saying that the lack of strong female characters in television and in movies is a disturbing trend?
Penn went ahead and showed us how.
"I'd like to think that none of it was influenced by what they call the movement of #MeToo,'' he countered.
"I think it's influenced by the things that are developing in terms of the empowerment of women who've been acknowledging each other and being acknowledged by men.
"This is a movement that was largely shouldered by a kind of receptacle of the salacious."
Excuse me, McElhone flat out asked, receptacle of the salacious?
"Well, we don't know what's a fact in many of the cases,'' he elaborated, making little to no sense and adding:
"Salacious is as soon as you call something a movement that is really a series of many individual accusers, victims, accusations, some of which are unfounded."
He then uttered the line that has made this interview go viral:
"The spirit of much of what has been the #MeToo movement is to divide men and women."
Penn, of course, is not the first celebrity to speak out against the #MeToo movement.
Do you remember what Lindsay Lohan once said about it?
But Penn is the first who has his own very spotty history with women... and who thinks that using big words makes him sound like an authority on a topic.
And also someone who talks in the third person.
"I'm gonna say that women that I talk to, not in front of a camera, that I listen to, of all walks of life, that there's a common sense that is not represented at all in the discussion when it comes to the media discussion of it, the discussion where if Sean Penn says this, so and so's going to attack him for saying this, because of that...
"I don't want it to be a trend, and I'm very suspicious of a movement that gets glommed on to in great stridency and rage and without nuance. And even when people try to discuss it in a nuanced way, the nuance itself is attacked."
Maybe because this isn't the time, Sean?
This movement has brought down such abusers as Harvey Weinstein, Matt Lauer and Kevin Spacey.
It has made millions of victims around the world feel as if they are not alone, possibly for the first time in their lives.
The pros far, far, far outweigh whatever cons Penn is rambling about here; that's our point.
"I think it's too black and white,'' the actor says. "In most things that are very important, it's really good to just slow down."
In other words:
Sean Penn is afraid that he's going to be the next "victim" of this movement and he's desperately trying to talk his way out of it before it happens.
The guy sucks.