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Thursday, August 14, 2008


The kids went to bed early tonight, so I start watching this show on CBS. I don't know the name of it, I've never seen it before.

Apparently it's about this SWAT-Team-type of crime fighting unit. So there is one character who is the only female team member. First, she shows how strong she is by dragging a 250 pound man across a room. Then she shows how valuable she is to the team--because she is smaller in size than the men, she is the only one that can fit through an air vent to follow the suspect. Then she proves how intelligent she is by successfully talking a suicidal teenager off a ledge. Heck, she's even brave enough to climb over the ledge to rescue the kid. I'm thinking, "This is a good show. Good writing. Cool plot. Nice solid female character here."

But NO!

Then there's the LAST scene. Suddenly, she is in the locker-room at the SWAT team station. She's just taken a shower. She's wearing nothing but a towel on her body. Then her male co-worker (apparently also her ex-boyfriend) "accidentally" walks in on her as she quietly and briefly protests as if to say, "Um. I'm naked here, go away. But wait, why are you looking at me so tenderly. Do you have something important to say to me. Ok. Nevermind me being naked--go ahead." So he says, "Well, I knocked. Just wanted to say how great you were today...blah blah blah...can I make sure you're okay?" So she turns around so he can see her injuries and.. I turned off the TV then. It was obvious they were about to make-out or some other LAME turn of events. What I saw was enough to totally frustrate me.

I was angry at the female actress who decided to play this tough girl--but ends up in a towel scene on television. She was one of the cool characters in that show "Felicity," back in the day, so I was lame of her. And I was angry at the writers of this show who apparently think it's not enough to represent a strong, intelligent, valuable, brave woman without having to end up showing her as a sexual object, half naked, melting at the charms of some dude she has feelings for.

Yes, in real life women are strong, intelligent, valuable, brave, AND sexual beings--but why would this show put that actress--never mind the character--in such a degrading towel scene?

I don't know what I'm frustrated about. It shouldn't surprise me, but for some reason it did.

It just verifies to me that there's something wrong with this culture's (albeit the media's culture) view on women. You can be as strong and intelligent as you want, but you're really not "interesting" unless you're some hot chick in a towel. SO PATHETIC. It's sort of like this culture is saying, "Hey ladies, you can be whatever you wanna be, we believe in you! You're a strong, independent FREE woman who can be the powerful female in our man's world and we'll respect you and treat you right--but, hey, don't forget to be "sexy" while you're at it, OK?--then you'll be the perfect woman." Pathetic. Offensive. It's basically misleading, hypocritical, unfair, and unrealistic. I think it presents a confusing message to young girls in this society as well who think a character like that is a role model. A role model I would have advocated...except for that last scene. Is reality creating this show or is this show creating reality? Maybe it just shows that men and women should not work so close together? Maybe segregating the sexes is not such a bad idea, huh?

I don't know. But I'll take my headscarf over that towel any day.


edana said...

You hit the nail on the head: "-but, hey, don't forget to be "sexy" while you're at it" This is so true! Why must we be sex objects to every stray guy that walks by?

We need to get guys to show a bit more respect. Coming into the female locker room? Really? How dumb could that guy be? What lame tv writers!


Scarf Ace said...

edana--thank you! i am really glad you agree! and i just had the question of wondering if that show's writers are men or women?! but i guess if "sex sells," then some TV people will write anything!