Further to the blackface make up currently on sale in the Halloween shop, Dundurm Town Centre.

A matching Afro.

Shawna writes:

Thought I might kick this (above) over to Broadsheet since I’ve had no response from Dundrum Town Centre nor Halloween HQ…

Saturday: Tonight Matthew…


Screen Shot 2014-10-28 at 11.55.01

AK writes:

Here’s the full selection of ‘blacking up’ paraphernalia in Halloween HQ in Liffey Valley.

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170 thoughts on “‘Fro Real?

        1. Sidewinder

          Because it’s hideously insulting to a minority that have been viciously oppressed for hundreds of years.

    1. Jess

      Where have you seen a white person wig?Are you sure you just havent seen a wig that is not associated with any race?

  1. Langer

    If going as a black-person is considered racist then surely going as a white-person is also racist…. so all pasty-faced paddies stay at home!

    1. deliverancecountry

      Lol. Everyone who isn’t white could wear nazi-face for Hallowe’en, for the laugh.
      I’m dressing as Cromwell (too soon?)

    1. rotide

      Are you allowed black up your face if your black? Or Indian? How about ‘half cast’ and you want to go as ving rhames? Is that allowed?

          1. Jess

            My mistake, i missread your comment.

            But please, if you want to find out more about why blackface and caricaturing other races is racist just google it. There has been 40 years of this discussion and the matter is well settled.

          2. Bluebeard

            I’m just so happy you’re here to guide me morally. Like the nuns used to do. Their rules were “settled” too.

          3. Jess

            Yes bluebeard. A small amount of reading and a modicum of understanding is all thats required to catch up

  2. Starina

    what’s wrong with it is that white people have no problem cherry-picking “cool” elements of black culture but institutionalised racism is alive and well – from cops shooting unarmed black men in the states to the shaming of black female sexuality to the minute discrimination that POC experience on a day-to-day basis that is invisible to most white people.

    So when you dress up in blackface (or as any race consider an “other”), you’re telling black people that A) they’re not really valid, they’re just a caricature and B) lol whatever cool story bro.

    How about this — when POC tell you it’s not cool to do something because they feel insulted by it, how about you try actually taking them at their word? Here’s one of a million blog posts by a POC about the issue: http://thoughtcatalog.com/madison-moore/2012/10/sorry-white-people-blackface-is-still-not-ok/

    1. Jess

      I can’t believe there are still people you need to explain why blackface is racist to. Thanks for trying

        1. AH HEYORQ

          In fairness, “racism” could do with a re-branding seeing as we are all members of the same “race”

    2. rotide

      Talking about white cops shooting black people and linking articles written by americans about americans does not make it in ANY way more relevant to Ireland.

      Ask yourself this, If i want to dress up as David Dickinson and used a load of fake tan to get the right look, is that racist? No, it isn’t.

      The guy last year dressed as Usain Bolt wasn’t racist at all, people made it racist though with their ridiculous pretensions to american culture.

      1. Starina

        you’re right. there’s no racism outside of America, and certainly not in Ireland. POC experience is endemic to the States. silly me.

        1. rotide

          There is racism everywhere.

          However, you continually bang on about ridiculously irrelavant issues like ‘shaming black womens sexuality’ and white cops shooting black people.

          This has no context in Ireland.

          1. Don Pidgeoni

            It has context when American culture is so influential on culture in pretty much every country around the world.

          2. Atlas


            Right, so we should look at everything through the lens of America’s basket case race relations, leaving aside the already deeply problematic implications of unwelcome US cultural imperialism.

            Yeah, nah m8, fupp off.

          3. rotide

            Starina, You have completely failed to link any evidence of White cops shooting black kids or Black womens sexuality being oppressed.

            Which is why i originally said you were talking through your hole.

          4. Starina

            i gave you examplea of racism in Ireland above. please don’t be such a pedant; it’s a rather poor filler for your weak justifications.

          5. Don Pidgeoni

            That’s not what I said Atlas. Saying that American racism has no context in Ireland, a country heavily influenced by American culture and therefore cultural norms and perceptions is silly. As is saying, well that’s America, implying that it doesn’t happen in Ireland, so we don’t have to worry about it. All very silly.

          6. rotide

            B^llocks Starina, I’m not being a pedant. I’m directly addressing your claims which were this:

            “what’s wrong with it is that white people have no problem cherry-picking “cool” elements of black culture but institutionalised racism is alive and well – from cops shooting unarmed black men in the states to the shaming of black female sexuality. ”

            The above has NOTHING to do with Ireland. Nothing at all.

            I’m not arguing that racism doesn’t exist. I’m saying that you’re talking rubbish when you try to compare two different cultures.

          7. Starina

            you purposely left off the end of my sentence because you’re cherry-picking.
            in the words of padraig pearse, whevs, yo. haters gonna hate. see you in about six months for a repeat of the same argument.

      1. Starina

        not even going to get into it here with you, Rotide. there’s tons of theses and books written about it, go to the library.

        1. rotide

          When I emigrate to the USA and spend time on an Irish blog trying to shame my former compatriots, I might.

      1. rotide

        People Of Color

        took me a while to work it out too. I haven’t brushed up on my White Guilt PC Guidelines in a while though.

          1. Don Pidgeoni

            Bit of dickhead aren’t you? If you were really interested in finding out about this stuff, instead of crying about how PC won’t even let you be racist anymore, you would google it or go read a book. Instead, you are being willfully ignorant. So, have fun with that.

          2. Bluebeard

            Woo hoo. You guys hate being called out cos u spend your time reaffirming each other and continuing the cycle of smug superiority that way outshines any level of racism in Ireland. And your answer always is to go and read. I’d warrant I’ve read and traveled more than you and what it’s taught me is to think for myself always. Instead you spout other peoples rubbish as dictat, like people quoting the bible or Koran. Think you muppet, stop imitating people you don’t even know.

          3. Don Pidgeoni

            Not Irish, so don’t know how that applies to me. You may have travelled to the ends of the earth but you seem to have very little grasp of how POC experience the world, largely as I suspect you are white. You can’t be another race but you can read about what POC live through and how things like this, that you consider inconsequential, are in fact very important interpretations of race. Clearly you aren’t interested in that. You are interested in insulting people who suggest you go and read up on things to understand why people are upset. You are the one who comes across as smugly superior.

            So stick that woo hoo up you pipe and smoke it. I’m out.

          4. Bluebeard

            Would you please stop patronising people by referring to them as POC. They are the same as every one else. Your smugness suffocates them.

          5. rotide

            Don, As you can see from the comments, the Acronym is not a widely used one in the normal discourse. I didn’t know what it meant, at least 3 others didn’t either.

            Simply dropping it in with no explanation of it and expecting it to be understood adds to the level of ‘smug’ that others are talking about.

            It’s exactly the same as when there was the ridiculous argument about men dressing up as women and that was found to be sexist and oppresionist by the groupthink here and starina (or yourself, or someone) was dropping some word from the trans community that noone had ever heard before expecting it to be understood.

          6. Don Pidgeoni

            Rotide, that’s not being smug. That’s just using different words. Failing to explain what those mean because it’s some kind of secret would be being smug. Maybe it could have been explained better but hey, its the internet. I accept that some of the blogs or columns I read online might differ to other people but POC isn’t something I haven’t read on pretty mainstream websites like I imagine people of here read.

          7. Sham Bob

            ‘way outshines any level of racism in Ireland’? Plenty of racism in Ireland, Bluebeard. See the Indo or IT comments section, radio shows like Niall Boylan & Neil Prendeville, Roma families being driven from their homes in Waterford.

          1. Don Pidgeoni

            Just because you didn’t know what it mean’t doesn’t make that smug. Maybe you should try that reading lark after all?

    3. Moan

      This kind of PC blather is what’s wrong with the world these days.
      Do you get a grant for talking this kind of tripe?

      1. Nigel

        I thought a devastating financial crash was what was wrong with the world today, along with global warming, various ethnic conflicts, poverty, oppression and injustice. But yeah, PC blather. You go with that.

  3. Bluebeard

    What a convoluted way to tell people they are racist! If I dress up as an inuit am I racist? If I dress up as an arab am I racist? Can white people play the Mikado? Or are you just isolating black people as a political football like everyone since Kennedy?

    1. Ruffi

      Plenty of other groups object to being portrayed in fancy dress, for example Native Americans — one festival in Canada banned revellers from wearing Native Head Dress during the festival, as is popular to do, because it was considered insulting by Native Americans. Look up “cultural appropriation” before you start throwing your privilege around Bluebeard.

      1. Paolo

        I am insulted every single time I see someone wearing a ginger wig on Paddy’s Day or talking about drinking the “Black Stuff” like it’s fecking mandatory for Oirish people.

        Where can I pick up my medal?

    2. Starina

      yes, its racist to dress up as inuit or arab. discussing blackface here as that’s what the photo above is about.

          1. Bluebeard

            Well in fancy dress, it usually a big white robe, a headress, maybe a scitimar. Is that ok? You might check the list. Thanks. I’m on an Emirates plane now and there’s a few of them around.

          2. Don Pidgeoni

            Given that your “average” modern Arab is probably more familiar with an iPhone than a goat, maybe your stereotypes need updating?

          3. Bluebeard

            I know. I spent some time with them in the Sinai selling weed and herding goats with their pick ups. Just forwarded one of them this discussion. They are all lazy though so he’s probably still asleep.

      1. ahjayzis

        Disagree actually, that’s taking it too far. I’ve dressed up as a sheikh once, it’s a national costume of sorts, it’s no more racist than you going in lederhosen, black and white stripes with a beret, or as a morris dancer.

        1. rotide

          If you went as a shiekh with 20 denny sausages strapped to your chest, that would be pretty racist.

          It’s ALL about context.

        2. Delacaravanio

          The Sun routinely use a fake sheikh (i.e. a wealthy Arab) to con wealthy celebrities into signing up to preposterous schemes. I’ve heard a lot of complaints about the Sun’s use of the sheikh, but racism has never been one of them, despite the fact the guy dressing up as the sheikh is of Pakistani descent, and the UK are years ahead of us in race relations.

      2. Bluebeard

        And I’m sure you are saying its racist in your opinion, which is hardly binding us it? Unless you consider yourself superior in some form, which would be emm..

  4. curmudgeon

    Click here to see two famous Hollywood actors earning millions from blatant racism: upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/2/2b/White_chicks.jpg

    Other famous racists include Michael Jackson, who hated being black so much he whited up permanently.

    Anyway the point is that white people aren’t allowed have any fun, and that despite your complete lack of hatred toward any race at all you are still not excused from racial abuse thrown at you just because you blacked up as mister T.

    1. Stewart Curry

      So you think that if someone dresses up as Mr T, blackface and all, and gets abuse for it, that they are the victims of racism?

      And that Michael Jackson magically gave himself vitiligo?

      1. curmudgeon

        No they are accused of racism by simple minded fools. Possibly the sort of fool who needs me to clarify my comment. Like the ridiculousness of accusing Michael Jackson of being a racist because of his skin colour. Or the stupidity of people (and broadsheet) attempting to make Halloween costume decisions politically correct, because they can’t tell the difference between oppression and taking the piss.

        1. SOMK

          Well Mr. “Anyway the point is that white people aren’t allowed have any fun”, the thing about Jackson is that how his genuine (the autopsy proved he had vitiligo, which lightens your skin tone. Of course my recollection is of people not believing this was a real condition and instead assuming he wanted to be white, the fact that article came out confirming he had vitiligo after his autopsy, that this was news confirms the fact that people still didn’t really believe he had a medical condition, oh no, he WANTED TO BE WHITE.

          Actually showing concern for how someone other than yourself perceives something is a sign of intelligence, not stupidity, you’re confusing the concept of ‘stupidity’ with that of ‘people who don’t agree with me’, and in fact if by ‘people who don’t agree with me’ you mean left-leaning types, the evidence actually shows the more intelligent you are (if a man) the more likely you are to be left-leaning politically, go on google it.

          You see when you’re a child, you sometimes say nasty things about other children, you might joke about the boy with slightly big ears, as having massive ears, of being a jumbo jet, you tease him about his big ears, but some people grow up, you have experiences, perhaps YOU go to Summer camp and get laughed at for having a tiny penis, for three months you’re known as ‘Mr. Tiny Dick,’ everyone seems to think this is hilarious, but for some reason you’re not laughing too, and maybe the next time when you see that big eared boy and you get the urge to shout “Oi Big Ears”, and laugh at how funny it is to point out something blindingly obvious, to ridicule someone else on the basis that they’re different, you remember being that time everyone laughed at your tiny, tiny, penis at Summer camp in the swimming pool and maybe it’s not as funny as it was, maybe as you age you start to wonder are there other things you find funny that other people might oppressive, it’s called MATURING, expanding your worldview so you understand that what you perceive as reality, is only but one, skewed perspective, though unlike adolescence Mr ‘Tiny Dick/”Anyway the point is that white people aren’t allowed have any fun?” not everyone goes through it…


          1. SOMK

            first paragraph mangled should read…

            Well Mr. “Anyway the point is that white people aren’t allowed have any fun”, the thing about Jackson is that how his genuine (the autopsy proved he had vitiligo, which lightens your skin tone) conditioned was not believed to be ‘real’ and instead there was a wide spread assumption he wanted to be white, the fact that news came out confirming he had vitiligo after his autopsy,indirectly confirms the fact that people still didn’t really believe he had a medical condition, oh no, he WANTED TO BE WHITE.

          1. Bluebeard

            I know the type. If only very on were like us kind of thing. Don’t you hate the way black, Arab and Chinese people are so much more racist than whit people by the way?

          2. Bluebeard

            What indeed? See how hard it is to keep your rules? Check your book for the answer and hit me up bro.

  5. Owen

    I was going to go out as one of Blue Man group on Sat night. Is that now not OK? Will the Smurfs mind? Does someone have Pappa Smurfs number?

    I never met Pappa Smurf before, but I smurfed his daughter once, she was smurfing wild.

      1. Owen

        I find the term POC patronising, and most often used by self-indulgent over PC fools, caught up in US reverse racism culture.

        On the other hand…… smurfs are smurfs.

        Sup now?!

          1. Bluebeard

            In your case it is. Many of your comments are offensive to whites and patronising to blacks, Asians, Arabs etc. bundling them into POC is disgusting.

  6. munkifisht

    I DO consider this racist (nothing wrong with a fro wig but the combo on the pic… wow), but this I don’t


    OK, when someone cosplays as their favorite Japanese character they don’t narrow their eyes or apply face make-up typically, but actually looking at the images there is no stereotype being mocked here. It’s not actually racist. It might be dumb and ignorant and some people may be offended, but the intent is not racial hatred.

    Racism and stupidity are two very different things and I think it’s very important to keep in mind that what is seen as racist actions are actually constructs of the society they exist in (for example there is nothing inherently racist about someone putting a white cloth on their head and burning a cross, but of course we all know the context and we impose the meaning of those actions).

    I think the sentiment is much better summed up in this article from Ike Awgu of the Huffington Post last year

    When a sharp knife is used over and over again, its edge begins to dull. I’m a little tired of hearing about blackface costumes and how I should be offended by people who are obviously not racists, obviously not trying to mock all human beings who happen to be black and are instead just trying to look like their favourite television character. There is a difference between being racist and just being insensitive, particularly when some people are too sensitive about everything except the things that actually matter.

    Context matters. Intentions matter. Not every person who dresses up as their favourite celebrity character (who happens to be black) is hearkening back to the era of the minstrel show or doing so for some other malevolent reason. Nor do I believe, for the record, that the effect is de-facto malevolent or dehumanizing of people of colour. Some of the outrage over innocent people throwing on some dark make-up says more about the racial insecurities of the complainants than the behaviour itself.

    If a group of white dudes decide to dress up as a black skinned Jamaican bobsled team, should I be offended? Why, because they aren’t ‘black’ Jamaicans? Jamaica is a multi-racial country. I was at a bar once and this exact thing happened; I felt as thought I “had” to be offended even though, really, I didn’t care and thought it was a funny costume. No longer.

    Are we to forever be held hostage by what a bunch of white people in the United States decided to do for entertainment in the early 19th century? I have never watched Orange Is The New Black and have no idea who “Crazy Eyes” is, but I doubt seriously that Julianne Hough (see link for this pics) intended to offend anyone by dressing up as some character from an HBO TV show, however cringe inducing. What Hough did is very different from the human refuse who dressed up as Trayvon Martin or dress up as a generic “black person” that personifies their stereotypes.

    #despicable: White partygoers pose as shooter #GeorgeZimmerman & blackface #TrayvonMartin for Halloween. pic.twitter.com/gO5zoSVUzf

    — sfpelosi (@sfpelosi) October 27, 2013

    Perhaps in the new age, we need to find a term aside from “racist” to describe behaviour that is simply racially insensitive or stupid. At worst, that’s all that Julianne Hough, who I had never even heard of prior to two days ago, is guilty of. And a lot of black people aren’t really offended by insensitive mistakes by people like Julianne Hough, they’re just doing what I had to do in that bar — acting offended because they believe it’s how they are “supposed” to behave.


    1. Atlas

      But then how will all the smug, self-important white people lecture other white people and patronise so-called ‘People of Color’ (lumping the 6 billion non-white people of the planet into one category? Really?!) on the evils of racism?

      Won’t somebody please think of Pidgeon and Starina!

    2. rotide

      THANK you mukfisht.

      It’s ALWAYS about context. ALWAYS.

      The guy in donegal who dressed as Usain Bolt and blacked himself up isn’t trying to oppress black people, or keep them down or call for their extermination and to think he is is idocy

  7. Caroline

    It’s the wistful background of the Serengeti on the pack that really sets the scene for me.

    It really helps evoke the bang of freshly-polymerised nylon rising from the head of the kind of flabby jape-meister who will inevitably end up wearing this.

    1. Starina

      is there a longgggg history of black people oppressing whites or making white people feel “less than” blacks? no?

      1. rotide

        Do we have a long history of oppressing blacks in this country or are you talking about your adopted home again?

        1. Kieran NYC

          We had the Black and White Minstrel Show and gollywogs. We just didn’t have many black people here at the time to oppress.

          Now we have many different ethnicities a mob attacking Roma houses.

        2. rotide

          Well no Kieran, “We” didnt have the black and white minstrel show. That was english.

          We did have the ads for Lyons tea and guess what, NOONE at the time thought it was racist untill it was pointed out that it was to them. It went away and noone really cared, although at the time I remember a lot of kids liking them because they were cute. Real racial hatred there.

  8. Grouse

    We’re so embarrassing. Jesus, this thread makes me never want to come home. This conversation has been played out 2X per year on Broadsheet as long as it’s been here, and nobody ever has their minds changed. I hope in 40 years yisser are all explaining to your grandchildren how you spent many a fine afternoon defending your right to be vaguely racist at hallowe’en parties. ‘I picked the right side,’ you’ll say. ‘It was definitely important that I be able to dress as B. A. Baracus with convincing blackface. It was worth offending a few oversensitive PC idiots. Most of them were probably white anyway. Sure isn’t America far away? Nothing to do with us. We did the whole A-Team.’ Your grandchildren will glaze over, change the subject. ‘They’re another generation,’ they’ll say later, on the ride home. ‘You can’t change your attitude at that age.’ Ignoring that you couldn’t change it in your twenties, in your thirties. That your small-island opinions had already been relegated long before your age was an excuse for them.

    1. Owen

      Hopefully my grandchildren will know the difference between the USA and America.

      Its simple minded posts like these that make me appreciate smurfs, and how they live their lives free of negativity and internet trolls.

      Smurf-on dudes………smurf-on

      1. Grouse

        Owen, I was you when I was in my late teens. Almost everyone you care to ask had a foetid early Internet history when they poked and prodded the web to see how it would respond. Where their hunger for amusement trumped their humanity, and everybody else felt like avatars. I wish there was some way I could show you how much better things will be in the future. How much more connected you’ll feel once you start to think of the people on the other end as people.

        1. Owen

          Oh FFS. You’re either the best smurfing troll on the planet or the greatest smurfing nob-head. Either way, well smurfing played Grouse, well smurfing played.

          Sadly I fear the latter.

          Also, America vs U.S…. that’s a key bit of info you need to have straight when you come back to tell us how great youve become.

          1. Grouse

            It’s funny that you are both conspicuously aware of “America” as a colloquialism and earnestly bringing up the smurfs in a discussion about blackface. Are you very young?

      1. Owen

        Thanks Don. I take back telling you to go Smurf yourself. I didn’t mean that. Sometimes I get so wound up about it all….. I hope you can forgive me.

    2. Kieran NYC


      If I suggested to ANY of my peer group (20-something Irish or American) that we go ‘blackface’ for a laugh for Halloween, they’d be completely appalled. And that’s just my white friends.

      What we have above is a bunch of middle-aged, white men (presumably) who refuse to empathize or consider the feelings of anyone who isn’t like them. Because something-something PC liberals.

      How very Christian of them, eh rotide?

  9. Gick

    Standard; gobshite, sheltered, white, middle class reaction….”as it doesnt insult me directly I cant see the problem with it, I’m not racist I tipped a black taxi man once and have a inoffensively brown skinned pal”

    “Still though….THE ENGLISH”

    Sh*t to be you all the time….

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