Ed Driscoll.com Ed Driscoll.com
Zero-Sum Indeed
By Ed Driscoll · November 15, 2007 09:56 AM · Bobos In Paradise · Hollywood, Interrupted · Oh, That Liberal Media! · The Return of the Primitive

In the New York Times-owned Boston Globe, Joanna Weiss writes, "On TV, men are the new weaker sex":

In one sense, this is gender-bending stuff as old as Shakespeare, imagining what things might be like if men were more like women, and vice versa. But on ABC, role-reversal is pursued with such vigor that it feels like a social mission: a feverish, wholly off-putting attempt to break free of the boy-meets-girl formula.

Nowhere is that clearer than on "Grey's Anatomy," ABC's wildly-popular lead-in to "Big Shots," where the character of Derek Shepherd - once known as "McDreamy" - has completed his transition from guy-the-heroine-pines-for-in-spite-of-herself to simpering McWeenie. When he was introduced in season one - a neurosurgeon seducing medical intern Meredith Grey at a bar - Shepherd (Patrick Dempsey) was the classic TV bad boy. He was distant and commitment-phobic. He nursed a deep dark secret. He was "McDreamy" because he was a fantasy: attractive but unattainable.

* * *

On "Grey's," in short, empowerment has become a zero-sum game. And a show that once found creative ways to ogle men has evolved into a show that wants to see them punished or demeaned. Mark Sloan (Eric Dane), the womanizing plastic surgeon dubbed "McSteamy," is now in pursuit of Erica Hahn (Brooke Smith), a hard-charging heart surgeon who calls Sloan and Shepherd "Pretty and Prettier." And of late, the male character most successful in romance is George O'Malley, the nerdy intern who is going through a remedial year. One of the other characters nicknamed him "Bambi."

This has been a topic that Glenn Reynolds has discussed at length for years at Instapundit. It is indeed a zero-sum game--just not the one Hollywood and the networks think it is.

Update: Much more on this topic in a recent post from the Anchoress: "Stupid men, Stupid Parents, Stupid Madison Avenue."

Related: "Ideology trumps the marketplace with these networks, unfortunately", Brent Bozell notes. "They've been bleeding audiences since 1994. They've lost 50% of their audiences, and yet they continue the same way they've been going."

Ideology also trumps the marketplace when it comes to big-screen Hollywood as well, of course. Arguably, even more so.

Since 2002, News, Technology and Pop Culture, 24 Hours a Day, Live and in Stereo!

(And every Saturday on Sirius XM Satellite Radio.)

What They're Saying

"A good read."--The Anchoress

Twitter Feed
About Me


Support the Site


February 2009
January 2009
December 2008
November 2008
October 2008
September 2008
August 2008
July 2008
June 2008
May 2008
April 2008
March 2008
February 2008
January 2008
December 2007
November 2007
October 2007
September 2007
August 2007
July 2007
June 2007
May 2007
April 2007
March 2007
February 2007
January 2007
December 2006
November 2006
October 2006
September 2006
August 2006
July 2006
June 2006
May 2006
April 2006
March 2006
February 2006
January 2006
December 2005
November 2005
October 2005
September 2005
August 2005
July 2005
June 2005
May 2005
April 2005
March 2005
February 2005
January 2005
December 2004
November 2004
October 2004
September 2004
August 2004
July 2004
June 2004
May 2004
April 2004
March 2004
February 2004
January 2004
December 2003
November 2003
October 2003
September 2003
August 2003
July 2003
June 2003
May 2003
April 2003
March 2003
February 2003
January 2003
December 2002
November 2002
October 2002
September 2002
August 2002
July 2002
June 2002
May 2002
April 2002
March 2002


Bookmark Me!

Blogroll Me!

Steal This Button!

Syndicate this site (XML)
Podcasts Feed

AddThis Feed Button

AddThis Social Bookmark Button


Our Podcasts' Apple iTunes Page

Powered by
Movable Type 3.35

Site design by

tumblr site counter
Copyright © 2002-2008 Edward B. Driscoll, Jr. All Rights Reserved