Sunday, November 26, 2006

Addendum: Why I Hate Studio 60 (subtitled: Kristin is never coming back, Aaron!)

So yeah, I'm still going to watch the presumably last four episodes of this tres horrible show. But tonight I have found another explanation of why I hate Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip. In the Television without Pity recap of last week's episode, "The Option Period," Miss Alli breaks down how Aaron Sorkin's misogyny and his inability to get over his ex-girlfriend Kristin Chenoweth are bleeding all over the show. The setup is, Harriet wants to pose in her underwear for some magazine, but Simon and Tom don't want her to do it, because right now she's "classy," and if she does the photo shoot, she will be "bargain bin...K-Mart." Yeah. Oh deary deary dear.

Miss Alli sums up the situation nicely:

Tom insists that "[the magazine is] getting the better end of the deal." [Harriet] wants to know why. "Because they're enhancing themselves, and you're diminishing yourself." Yes, by posing in your underwear, you are less. Literally, Tom just said that women who pose in their underwear are diminished. They are less. You can ogle their boobs, you can make comments about how much you want to see them naked...but if they give you what you are asking for and drooling over, then they become less than they were. It's pretty shocking, in that it's presented as logical rather than blisteringly misogynist, which it is.

And I love the slam on Aaron that immediately follows:

And if you want to get really creepy, just remember the subtext is that Aaron Sorkin is addressing his relatively recent ex -- who is frankly at least as talented as he is -- telling her that she is now diminished. She is now less. Sorry, Kristin Chenoweth. Forget Wicked. You're diminished, and your asshole boyfriend has decided to announce this not only to you, but to the general public as well. That guy's a class act all the way.

Preach the word, Miss Alli.

I knew there was something about The West Wing that always skeeved me out, even though I own Season 1-4, and adore so many of the episodes. That Sorkin way of being perplexed by strong, intelligent women often appears in his writing as simultaneous admiration of and disgust for those women owning their sexuality. I'm not saying that Harriet should or should not pose for Maxim (yeah, I said it). I am saying that it's none of Aaron's business what a woman chooses do with her own body. He definitely has no right to judge her about it, essentially lusting after her half naked body, then calling her a dirty whore if she dares show it to anyone else. And, he has no logical reason to make this non-situation the life-or-death plotline that Studio 60 hinges on for an entire episode. Who cares?! God, get over it, Aaron.

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