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The A-word in popular media: A plea for help

I feel sheepish asking for reader participation when my own contributions to this neglected blog have been so pathetic. I do hereby swear to post every day for the next week if you all help me out here, okay?

I'm looking for references to abortion or unplanned pregnancy on tv shows or in films over the past year or so. Knocked Up, Waitress, and Juno are, of course, already on the list. What else should be there?

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Comments

81 comments have been made. Post a comment.

I've hear mentions of a

I've hear mentions of a recent movie called 'Bella', in which abortion is discussed but I am not familiar with it at this point. I'm under the impression that it is very anti-abortion.

The past two seasons of Desparate Housewives have dealt with the unplanned pregnancy of Bree Hodges daughter Danielle and the subsequent plot to disguise it from the neighbours.

There is the Romanian film '4 months, 3 weeks, and 2 days', which recently won a couple of awards at Cannes.

There is the documentary 'Lake of Fire' by Tony Kaye (American History X). It was made in 2006 but it is just now getting on the critics' "Best of..." lists. Chronicles the sides of the debate in America.

'Vera Drake' is on the older end, having been released in 2004.

In the show 'Six Feet Under', Claire Fisher has an abortion.

Either this season or last, the show 'Cold Case' had an episode in which one of the guest characters, an amish girl, had an unplanned pregnancy during Rumspringa.

Todd Solondz's 'Palindromes' (of which I was reminded of by this article: http://www.villagevoice.com/film/0804,hoberman,78918,20.htm).

deadwood season 2

In deadwood season 2, Alma Garrett realizes she's pregnant with Seth Bullock's baby, who's married. Trixie ("the whore") talks to her about the possibility of abortion (Trixie discusses having had abortions in the past), but in the end Alma decides to keep the baby. In order to avoid being a single mother, she ends up marrying an aquaintance, Mr. Ellsworth (who Trixie convinced to propose to Alma). In the third season, she loses her baby. Interesting discussion of abortion & women's choices during 1870s America.

Are you still working on this?

If so.. I have two that I don't think I've seen mentioned here. There was a made-for-tv film in 2004 starring Mariska Hargitay (SVU) as a lawyer who is defending Alison Pill, an Amish teenager who has a fling with her NYC boyfriend and gets pregnant. She spends months in terror of being found out, 'excommunicated' or having her pending marriage to a local boy 'cancelled'. She goes out ot a pond in the middle of the night and passes out from the pain during labour. When she wakes up, the baby is gone--she thinks it's a sign from God, that he took the baby from her because she couldn't have it; or that it was all a terrible nightmare. In the end, her mother had known all along and buried the still-born little boy.

Also, I don't watch it so I don't know for sure, but I passed by an ending episode of the new 90210 and it seemed alluded to that one of the girls was pregnant. Not sure what will happen there.

definitely include

definitely include Palindromes

During season 4 of The L

During season 4 of The L Word, Kit has an abortion. There's a whole story arc about it, including Kit being tricked by a crisis pregnancy clinic and kicking some ass when she realizes it.

I'm not up on my pop culture

I'm not up on my pop culture from the last year because the TV in Romania is about two years behind but there's a Romanian film 4 months, 3 weeks and 2 days about an illegal abortion during communism that just won at Sundance. I don't know if that helps.

Weeds

On 'Weeds', the son of the main character, 15-year-old Silas, gets his girlfriend pregnant. While he momentarily convinces her that they can raise the baby, she snaps back to reality pretty quickly (she's a good student and wants to go to college etc.), has an abortion and ultimately cuts him off. She ends up coming off in a much better light, while Silas seems whiny, selfish and flat-out dumb.

Take note: Opinions expressed are those of their respective authors, not necessarily those of Bitch. Dig?

I'd say more like evil

If I remember correctly he actually got her pregnant on purpose by puncturing a condom in order to trick her into staying with him instead of going to college. I never quite understood how he could be a sympathetic character after that.

You're right!

I forgot about that. Yeah! He was pretty pathetic. But I also feel like even if he didn't do that, she was never portrayed as being heartless for having an abortion. She always seemed like a solid, mature person with a bright future. I was impressed with how they wrote her reaction to that situation.

Take note: Opinions expressed are those of their respective authors, not necessarily those of Bitch. Dig?

Colin, you must be a youngster

When I was in college, General Hospital's most popular characters were Luke and Laura. In a plot as true to the lived experience of rape victims as we know MSM to be, Laura fell in love with Luke after he raped her. The duo then turned into the romantic soap opera love story line of the decade. Charming, eh?

Wait, what? What the fuck?

Wait, what? What the fuck? She fell in love with him after he RAPED her? I think I'm going to go throw up now. brb kthnxbai

more KR and a book that might help

I know Pro-Life groups advertise for and support Bella. I haven't seen it, but in that other Keri Russel movie August Rush, her father secretly puts her baby up for adoption (so says IMDB), whatever that indicates.

There is also an ethnography, Speaking of Abortion: Television and Authority in the Lives of Women, by Elizabeth Cole and Andrea L. Press, which is mostly about how women from different classes and political backgrounds react to abortion on TV, and although the tv shows aren't contemporary (ie Dallas), but the authors do feature an assessment of how abortion/unplanned pregnancy is portrayed on television that I think is still very relevant (like having a miscarriage so that ultimately there's no choice to be made).

____________
Kjerstin Johnson, editor-in-chief
Did someone say "Comments Policy"?

August Rush

Yeah what happens in August Rush is that Kerri Russell's character is pregnant and in a car accident, and has an emergency c-section, and her father forges her signature on the adoption papers. She never wanted to put her baby up for adoption in the first place, nor get an abortion, even though her father pushes her to.

Abortions: If These Walls

Abortions: If These Walls Could Talk, The Last King of Scotland (fourth wife goes in for an abortion, but instead gets murdered), Vera Drake, The Cider House Rules, Dogma (abortion clinics in it), and Dirty Dancing.

Unplanned pregnancies: Where the Heart Is?, Meet the Fockers, Fools Rush in, Look Who's Talking, Kill Bill, Friends (Rachel gets pregnant by Ross), Maria Full of Grace, Quinceanera, and Sex in the City (Miranda gets pregnant by Steve).

These are a few but I feel like every movie that involves a pregnant woman, the woman in it does not plan to get pregnant.

LAGlenda

LAGlenda

Thanks

Thanks

most were covered, but...

On Ugly Betty Henry's ex girlfriend has an unexpected pregnancy.

And that's all I can think of. I think on Degrassi someone had an abortion or something. And that's a show targeted to teens.

You are all awesome!

Thanks, these are really helpful. Keep 'em coming.

Clearly, I need to bump Weeds up on my Netflix queue.

By a large extension there

By a large extension there is 'Casa de los babys'(2003).

A keyword search of abortion and related terms will offer a large list of films that people bothered to tag. Since you were looking for more recent examples, I've limited my offerings to that (with the occasional exception):

Jane: An Abortion Service- http://fwhc.org/jane.htm - Documentary about a women's collective in Chicago that provided safe, but underground abortions.

Nicki's Abortion (2004)

Unborn in the USA: Inside the War on Abortion (2007)- http://www.avclub.com/content/cinema/unborn_in_the_usa_inside_the_war

Sister Mary Catherine's Happy Fun-Time Abortion Adventure (2006)

Speak Out: I Had an Abortion (2005)

The Magdalene Sisters (2002)

Sacrifice (2000)(TV)

Mr. Brooks (The Daughter was unsure if she was going to keep the baby. Father said that he would be overjoyed to be a grandparent)

Finn's Girl (2007)

TV Show "Masters of Horror" episode: Pro-Life (2006)- Relgious Fanatic attempts to save pregnant daughter, who is at an abortion clinic. She believes that she is bearing demon spawn.

Hell House (2001) A documentary about the Fundamentalist Halloween houses. There is a scene where an abortion 'victim' is depicted as on the brink of death. Only asking God for forgiveness save her. Well, her soul at least.

One Day in May (2002) Directed to a Christian audience, there is a physical and spiritual drama playing out over the soul of an unborn child.

Come What May (2008) Another Christian-directed film. Slated for release this year, a young man deals with some tensions at home and at school. His mother is a feminist attorney who defends abortion in court while his father is newly Christian. At the same time, the young man argues against abortion at a Forensics competition.

A Federal Case (2008) When the mayor's 17 year old daughter gets pregnant, Dr. Jacob is called to abort the child. But, anti-abortionist Reverend Thomas will not allow the murder of this unborn child who has been fathered by his own nephew - and will go to any extent to save the life of this baby, even if the mayor sets it up as a federal case

A repeated theme on South Park i.e. The Movie, Woodland Critters Christmas, Kenny Dies, etc.

Tv Show "It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia" episode: Charlie Wants an Abortion (2005)

British mention

In Prime Suspect 7 (or Prime Suspect: Final Act) Helen Mirren plays a cop who's had an abortion and has to talk about it really openly. It's nicely done.

Sex and the City; Miranda's pregnancy

When Miranda gets pregnant in Sex and the City (I believe season 4, possibly 5 though) she decides to get an abortion. Carrie, admits to having had one when she was in her twenties, and Samantha says she's had 2. Miranda goes to the clinic at the end of the episode and changes her mind to continue with the unplanned pregnancy.

Everwood

The WB television show, Everwood, featured in the very first season (episode 21) an episode about abortion - I think the title is "Episode 20". Also, beginning in the second season, an enormous plot line is created through the unplanned pregnancy of Ephram's ex girlfriend, and the events that happen after.

More examples- imperfect memory with names

There was a movie in the 90's with Kevin Bacon and Kyra Sedgwick in which she has an abortion. It is not at the center in the film, just an event in the relationship told by the movie. I can't remember the title.

"The Last American Virgin" deals with abortion. It's high-school-boys-trying to get laid movie with a heart from the 80's.

The Sins of Father Amaru (I might have the name wrong) - A Mexican movie with Gael Garcia Bernal- a priest gets a young parishoner pregnant, brings her to get an ilegal abortion, after which she dies.

On a Cagney and Lacey episode the dark haired one admits to having an ilegal abortion years before.

Elena

80's movie...?

Did anyone mention Fast Times at Ridgemont High -- Jennifer Jason Leigh's character?

That scene just devastated

That scene just devastated me. I still cry whenever I watch it.

Skins

Skins is a UK series airing on the E4 channel, set amongst a group of sixth-formers (students in our final two years of high school). It generally has quite a good track record of addressing serious issues in a way that acknowledges the complexities and does not preach. Episodes 8 and 9 of season 2 deal in part with the unplanned pregnancy of one of the regular teenage characters. Health professionals are shown supporting her right to choose, as are her friends. The drama centres on her apprehension about telling her boyfriend that she is pregnant. I think it's generally a very responsible portrayal that neither demonises nor moralises, but unfortunately a lot of good work is thrown away when the boyfriend dies at the end of episode 9 as the result of a longstanding medical condition. This is actually drawing together some major threads of that character's arc, most of which are not related to the pregnancy, but the resultant melodrama does have the potential to be read as if his death is a punishment of the girlfriend for the "sin" of having sex. I'm pretty sure this is unintentional, but it's there. We've yet to find out whether the character will in fact continue the pregnancy - episode 10, the season finale, airs tomorrow. I believe a DVD of the season will be out shortly.

The A Word

This is my first post on here, and I read all the previous comments to try and avoid saying something stupid... I just wanted to point out that there is also a mention of abortion/unwanted pregnancy in the first season of LOST with Claire, and again with Sun.

1. Claire becomes accidently impregnated by her boyfriend, realizes she is unfit, and he convinces her they should keep and raise the child, only to wuss out at the last minute and leave her alone and too far along to abort.

2. Sun is unable to get pregnant by her impotent (or something) husband, Jin, and therefore, when she realizes her pregnancy on the island, she believes it to be the child of the man she was having an affair with. I'm not entirely sure it would qualify as unwanted, though, since Sun and Jin have reconciled by this point.

---This may be silly, but there is also a pregnancy in the movie version of Neil Gaiman's Stardust. Tristram's mother is in a witch's captivity when she gets pregnant, and she leaves Tristram on his father's doorstep in a basket.

Bella and some other films

I have seen Bella and it is an exquisite film. Personally I would not consider it to be a very anti-abortion film. The woman in the film experiences an unplanned pregnancy and is having a rough time in her life at the moment. She decides to have an abortion but then changes her mind at the last possible second. I would say this movie celebrates choice. If you have no seen it, do yourself a favour and watch it. It is an extremely well-made movie (a rarity nowadays).

Saved! is a good film that deals with an unplanned pregnancy, especially an unplanned pregnancy in the Catholic school system.

As someone stated before Degrassi (the old series) dealt with various scenarios of unplanned pregnancy and abortion. They new series has dealt with these issues as well.

Canadian films, Cake and Ill Fated deal with the subject matter. In Cake, one of the characters works at an abortion clinic. In Ill Fated the main characters deal with an unplanned pregnancy within the confines of a small town, though the outcome is morbid (it is an excellent film nonetheless).

That is all I can think of as now, since a lot of the films I know have already been discussed.

the old degrassi show

we had to watch the old degrassi show episode where Spike gets pregnant and decides to keep her baby in sex education in junior high(i think grade eight) and discuss the episode and what we though about her decision.

"To know, is to know that you know nothing. That is the meaning of true knowledge."
Confucius

"To know, is to know that you know nothing. That is the meaning of true knowledge."
Confucius

Unplanned Pregnancies on TV

In the TV show Reba, a good chunk of the entire show focuses on the eldest daughter that got pregnant by her boyfriend in high school. Her boyfriend had to move in because his parents kicked him out, he married her, and they live with a fairly accepting mother.

There was also an episode of Cold Case (not sure which one, but it is about a teenage murder case from 1998 that was brought up again ten years later) that talks a lot about the sins of premarital sex (from the perspective of Christians) and refrains from educating the students about safe-sex practices. One of the girls in this club for born again virgins has actually been having sex with her boyfriend and she thinks she got pregnant. Another more "promiscuous" girl finds out and tries to tell her that it is normal and ok. The gist of the episode revolves around sexuality being the cause of the "promiscuous" girl's death.

JLM

JLM

Dirty Dancing

does a really good job of showing how horrifying illegal abortions were pre-Roe v Wade. Baby's first act of bravery is helping another woman get an abortion, and the woman's never shamed for wanting one.

There have been a lot of

There have been a lot of references to abortion in recent films. "The Cider House Rules" obviously is an important one. In "High Fidelity" abortion is mentioned as well [if only for 5 minutes].

Just my own take on abortion - contrary to prior posts, I don't think anyone naturally feel "alright" with an abortion or even "comfortable" with it, really. That's quite impossible the way women are wired. I am pro-choice [but anti-partial birth abortion] and I think the media portrays abortion fairly well in recent films and programs.

It isn't "quite impossible".

It isn't "quite impossible". I've had five and I don't feel bad about it. It would have been worse to have a baby when I couldn't even take care of myself very well (hence having to get five abortions- I was a falling down mess of a person). But even so, being older and wiser, I'd still get one today if I got pregnant.

All I ever felt was fear of getting damaged by the procedure physically, then relief, for both my fetus and myself, and then cramps. But I am proud to say "I have had an abortion". Just like I would be proud to say "I use birth control or he uses condoms". Being open enough to admit that you just weren't ready to conceive takes a lot of guts in society today, but it shouldn't, because there's nothing to be ashamed of. A lot of women might experience regret, but I am not one of them, and neither are any of my friends who've had abortions (my Jesus-freak roommate had five as well! But I was the only person she ever told and only after I told her how many I'd had. Kinda makes you wonder...). So I guess not all women are wired that way.

Back to the topic at hand. Has anyone mentioned Citizen Ruth? I know it's old, but I just watched it the other day for the first time. Mixed feelings about it.

Secret Life of the American Teenager...

There's "Secret Life of the American Teenager" on ABC Family which focuses on a "a smart girl, band geek.....who is pregnant" (from the wobsite).

Its made by the same producers I believe (don't quote me) as 7th Heaven...which also had some baby drama involved as I recall.

Also, I'm sure there are a few episodes of Roseanne which deal with this issue.

edit: I think that in "That 70's show", Kelso gets his girlfriend pregnant...but I'm not sure.
And has anybody mentioned soap operas? I think a lot of them use that as a topic, but again, I'm not sure.

Anti-gay abortion on t.v.

There was a Law and Order this past year dealing with the pursuit of identifying a "gay gene" in the show a woman was murdered because she was choosing to have a child that might carry the gene. The males in her life wanted her to have an abortion.

Nip/Tuck has had several

Nip/Tuck has had several unplanned pregnancies.

Season 1- Julia gets pregnant. (Of course, 17 years before the series starts, she also got pregnant- unplanned.)

Season 1 or 2- Gina gets pregnant.

Season 3- Julia gets pregnant.

Season 4- Kimber gets pregnant.

Season 5- Christian meets the daughter he never knew he had.

While Julia's second pregnancy in series almost ends in abortion, she and her then ex-husband Sean change their minds at the last minute (on Christmas Eve, no less). Also, in one of the early season episodes around Christmas, Matt discusses his theory surrounding the "virgin birth" with his younger sister.

Oddly enough, abortion is seldom seen as a solution to the pregnancies in the show. Surprising given the fearless content the show has, in general. Indeed, numerous conservative organizations have tried with gusto to get the show pulled or to get advertiser/consumer boycotts against it.

I think I saw Saved!

I think I saw Saved! mentioned. Jenna Malone gets pregnant trying to help her boyfriend decide if he is gay or not and gets pregnant. This means that she must hide it because she goes to an ultr-conservative fundamentalist, evangelical Christian school and runs in a crowd that call themselves the Angles and pursue perfect Christian womanhood with a vengeance.

Also- a documentary- Jesus Camp. Abortion is not the focus but it does come up. Especially when the families bring their children to protests.

Abortion and unplanned pregnancy

Not last season, but the season before, JD and his girlfriend Kim unexpectedly got pregnant on Scrubs, despite the fact that they'd decided not to have sex because neither of them had a condom. It seems that he must have ejaculated near enough to her that she became pregnant.

They spend the entire episode in which Carla gives birth to her and Turk's daughter trying to decide as to whether they're going to have the baby, an abortion, or adoption. A small figure of Jesus comes to life in his daydream, and lectures him, saying abortion is never right. It seems unlikely that in a comedy, especially one in which a child is being born in the same episode, that abortion was ever a likely choice.

Jordan, another character who is pregnant unexpectedly, though she found out late the season before, (her ex-husband Dr. Cox who is basically her husband, had a vasectomy after they had their first child) admits she had an abortion when she was a young woman when speaking with JD and Kim.

a-word

Quinceanera might be a good film to look at...it was released in 2006.
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0451176/

New article online

I just noticed on the new articles RSS feed that an old Bitch article about this very topic was posted. Here's the link: http://bitchmagazine.org/article/go-forth-and-multiply

Also, if any of y'all don't get the new articles feed it's great! Whenever a new article is posted from old issues it lets you know. I just clicked on the link on the bottom of the home page but you can also get it here: http://bitchmagazine.org/new-articles/feed

Yay, I ♥ old bitch articles!

~tw~

A few more

Further references:
On "Angel" in season 2(?) Cordelia's impregnanted by a demon and almost carries to full term in a day. When the demon is slain, all the women he impregnated spontaneously miscarry, so no one actually has to have an abortion.
On another episode of "Scrubs", a Catholic priest admits that he is pro-choice.

Third Watch

It was a few years ago, but on the show Third Watch, a fire fighter had an abortion. It was portrayed as a difficult but brave choice, and there was an episode that actually showed her face while she went through the procedure. The episode was called "Faith," after the name of the character.

Jean de Florette / Manon of

Jean de Florette / Manon of the Spring are a pair of fine French films that have at their heart an unplanned pregnancy.

WEEDS

The cliffhanger season finale has the lead character, Nancy Botwin, about to be killed (we think) by her Mexican drug lord boyfriend's cartel leader. However, she hands over a photo of a sonogram with her name on it and says, "It's too early to tell, but it feels like a boy!"

Showtime's commercial promo for the series promises its return in "Nine Months or so..."

There's a really good

There's a really good Canadian film called Parsley Days, wherein when the protagonist discovers that she's pregnant, she plans to get an abortion right away. It is not a tough moral decision, she does not waver on it. It's very matter of fact.

While she waits to go to the clinic, an herbalist friend of hers prescribes her a parsley heavy diet, since parsley is said to induce miscarriage.

And at the end of the film, she has an abortion. And does not feel guilty.

It's probably the sweetest movie about abortions that I've ever seen.

My Wife and Kids

Junior and his girlfriend have an unplanned pregnancy while in high school. They end up keeping the baby and raising the baby in his parents house. The fifth season deals with their parenting quite a bit. (stars Damon Wayans and Tisha Campbell-Martin).

It's old, but wonderfully done

It's a documentary style film set in the future: Rain Without Thunder

It's SO good. My sister and I have been trying to get more people to watch it. My sister and I are two different types of pro-choice. I'm unapologetically so, no if's, and's, or but's. My sister is unapologetically so, even if she may not personally like it, only because the idea of unwanted children being born into the world and subsequently abused terrifies her. She says to never have existed isn't that bad of a fate, there is much worse that could happen to a being. I guess with age comes wisdom...

Oldie but goodie

And then there's Maude. Anyone old enough to find that funny gets a bright, shiny quarter)

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maude_(TV_series)

Yeah, that one is old but was (and still is) ground breaking. Episode came out just prior to Roe V. Wade.

House!

House, MD has had several episodes where a patient gets an abortion, including the first episode of the fifth season (not to mention the patient is some kind of assistant to a prominent feminist activist, and there is some discussion of feminist issues in the episode) , and an episode in which the patient getting the abortion is a 12-year old diver in season three.

House S3...

Not to be pedantic, but the young diver ep is 'Kids' (1x19).

'One Day, One Room' (3x12)'s main plot is about a young woman who was raped and is now pregnant; she is pro-life and insists on carrying through her pregnancy on moral grounds, while House tries to convince her she should have an abortion. Less polarizing than it sounds, and examines a lot of the logical issues around the pro-life argument.

The most recent episode, 'Joy to the World' (5x11) has a storyline related to the topic, but I'm not going to go further because of spoilers.

House S5, S1

The Patient of the Week in the episode "Joy" (5X6) is an unwed mother who at first was planning to give the baby up for adoption.

In "Sports Medicine" (1X12), the POTW's wife is about to donate a kidney to her husband, but she turns out to be pregnant. Her first reaction is to demand an abortion so she can go ahead with the transplant.

In Gilmore Girls (this

In Gilmore Girls (this obviously happens prior to the start of the show) Lorelai has Rory when she is sixteen.
Also, several episodes of Veronica Mars deal with abortion/unplanned protection. The ones that come to mind are 3.12, 2.9/2.10, 1.14

Degrassi

I know someone else already mentioned the old degrassi show about Spike, but there was also an episode about one of the twins that got an abortion and it showed these pro-life protesters blocking her way into the clinic. It was empathetic to the girl getting the abortion and it portrayed the fear and guilt as weapons being used by the protesters. Also, I heard someone say that the new degrassi show also had a few episodes on abortion, but I haven't seen them.

Degrassi: next generation

In the newer "Degrassi: The Next Generation" the character Manny has an abortion (story is in episodes 314 and 315 (Accidents Will Happen, part 1 and 2). It is portrayed as a scary situation for a young highschooler, but she has the support of her friends, family, and doctor. It seems like they are trying to be realistic and "pro-choice". An especially important one because it is a show for teenagers!

Degrassi tng cont.

later on in the series they also portray 16 year old Liberty choosing to put her baby up for adoption and they follow how hard the desicion is before and after. And they talk about all options.

degrassi rocks.

degrassi:NG abortion

"Accidents Will Happen" (aka Manny Abortion Episode) was not shown in the US. Summaries of those episodes are here: http://degrassi.dumbbaby.net/e/314.shtml

LOVES the classic Degrassi!

Yes, it was one of the twins who had an abortion and Liz, the punk-rock girl, spray paints "MURDERER" on her locker. Well, I suppose we should have known she was pro-life (or at least anti-sex) since she was able to resist the charms of Joey Jeremiah!

Let's not forget daytime TV and the vast cultural phenomena associated therein. Last year had Lulu on General Hospital saying the "A" word and getting one, Erica Kane on "All My Children" back when "Maude" was getting hers in the 70s; probably more shows but GH is the only one worth watching IMHO. There are SO many "Who's your daddy?" storylines and unplanned pregnancies on daytime that I am surprised it has been overlooked thus far.

The Real World, Florida MTV

The Real World, Florida MTV series: one of the girls has an abortion during the show´s season.

Grey's Anatomy

In the second season of Grey's Anatomy, Cristina unexpectedly gets pregnant and intends to have an abortion (though I'm not sure the "a-word" is ever used). However, before the date of her appointment comes up, she collapses and the other doctors realize she's carrying an ectopic pregnancy and needs surgery ASAP. So the show was able to terminate her pregnancy without actually depicting one of its main characters having an abortion.

yes

That's the one I was thinking of too. I especially liked the scene with Dr. Bailey (Cristina's female boss, who is either pregnant or just had a baby, can't remember) when Cristina makes it clear that she's feeling pressured to feel guilty about the abortion, and Bailey tells her, in so many words, that she shouldn't feel bad and she needs to do what will be best for her personally. Later, after the ectopic is discovered, her boyfriend (who didn't know about the pregnancy) asks her what she was planning to do about it; when she finally tells him, expecting him to be angry, he says that he isn't upset, he was just curious to know what she was planning. So all in all, despite them chickening out about the abortion itself, it seemed like it was handled very well -- Cristina keeps feeling like others are judging her for planning to get an abortion (which I thought was perfectly realistic, even for a strong-willed person like Cristina) but then having people she loves and/or respects tell her that she has the right to make her own decisions. And she certainly never changes her mind about what she wants, it's not like the ectopic was thrown in there because she decided she wanted the baby and the writers didn't want to deal with her, you know, actually having a baby (as seems to happen a lot on other shows).

Okay, that was long, sorry!

boston legal

Rachel, what you're working on may be long over, but I'm hoping someone will write about the horrific episode of Boston Legal that was just on, which completely demonized abortion and teens who get pregnant. I'm pretty fired up about it right now, but I'm pretty sure it will still be striking in the morning.

some scifi options

Battelstar Galactica had an episode that dealt with abortion. President Roselyn Had to deal with wether or not to allow abortion to continue in the fleet given that the human race was facing extinction. She also feared of losing the support of religious voters that form a large part of her supporters.

supernatural had an episode where a faith healer uses a spirt to kill an abortion clinic worker so that the healer can save someone they consider moral.

not scifi but..

30 rock had an episode where Liz thinks she is pregnant with dennis Duffys baby by mistake.

Private Practice

I'm not sure if you're still working on this piece, but ABC's Private Practice had an interesting episode about abortion that aired yesterday evening. A new doctor in the practice performs abortions and there is a debate between the different doctors and staff about how they feel about it and why they feel the way they do. It is also revealed that two main female characters have had abortions. I think it addressed some of the complexities of the issue in a way that I haven't seen on television before.

I can't remember what season

I can't remember what season it is, but JD and Kim have an unplanned pregnancy on Scrubs and Jordan tells them she had an abortion, speaking quite positively about it. It comes up when JD and Kim are debating on keeping the baby. Abortion and miscarriage play out a lot in that story arc. Worth checking out for a comedic perspective.

Pro-Life is a horror movie

Pro-Life is a horror movie made for tv (part of the Masters of Horror series?)

Movies/documentaries include: 'Lake of Fire', 'Unborn in the USA: Inside the War on Abortion', '4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days', 'Vera Drake'

CSI's last episode...

...involved the apparent murder of a young woman who was 8 weeks pregnant. CSI checked her browser history and the night of her death, she'd been searching for local abortion clinics as well as checking out adoption services. The investigators acted fairly sympathetic and nonjudgmental towards her situation.

That was about it, though; the story quickly veered off in another direction (i.e., away from the baby daddy and bf).

(Episode 908, 'Young Man With A Horn', 12/4/08)

Still working on this?

I hope so, so I can help:
In Gossip Girl, Serena's mother Lily van der Woodsen was in an "institution" in France when she was 19 and Rufus Humphrey, who she is supposed to finally be with after bad timing and pining for each other for years, refuses to be with her because he finds out she actually went to abort their child.

In Grey's Anatomy, I think season two, Christina Yang accidentally gets pregnant, schedules an abortion, but then has an ectopic pregnancy, so she miscarries.

Also on Grey's, Izzy's character's back story is that she had an unplanned pregnancy at 15 or 16 and gave it up for adoption.

Going quite a bit further back, M*A*S*H dealt with quite a few accidental pregnancies, where American G.I.s got Korean women pregnant. There's one episode in particular when Honeycutt and Hawkeye help a soldier get through the red tape of the U.S. government not wanting him to take his baby and girlfriend with him. It ends up working after they get married.

Also, slightly older movie, Object of my Affection. Jennifer Aniston has an unplanned pregnancy with her boyfriend but breaks up with him and her and her roommate, Paul Rudd, who is gay in the movie, decide to raise it together.

There's a very virulently

There's a very virulently anti-abortion movie playing right now, in limited release, called 22 Weeks. Here's the link to the website:

http://www.22weeksthemovie.com/

Since it's a current film I'm not sure if it's outside the dates you're looking at. :)

Unplanned/Abortion

The Secret Life Of The American Teenager
I don't know if you are looking for a certain age, but this reaches out to mainly teens.
The main character Amy accidentally has sex at band camp over the summer. She becomes pregnant and must decide between abortion and keeping the baby.

Accidental sex?

I'm not jumping on you or poking fun in any way, but how on earth does one have accidental sex? I find that hilarious for some reason... and I think it totally fits what the show is about... sounds exactly like something a teenager would say: "But Mom! It was an accident that we had sex! I didn't do it on purpose!"

China Beach

Another show that you might want to look into that I haven't seen mentioned is China Beach. The episode features a USO worker who gets pregnant by a soldier. It's told backward (like Memento, only before that movie was made) and shows the main character, Murphy, who is a catholic and a nurse, trying to convince the USO girl not to get an abortion. The other woman lead character in the show, a practical take-no-nonsense American prostitute, helps the USO worker find an abortionist.

It was very well done. The USO worker's motives are examined; she wants to keep helping other soldiers, only not with sex. Murphy's views are heard, and so is the other side's. And at the end, the USO worker finds out that the soldier she'd had sex with was killed in action, making her choice a practical one, but bittersweet. She continues on with her job.

Revolutionary Road with Kate

Revolutionary Road with Kate Winslet and Leonardo DiCaprio, an interesting mix of fairly modern themes with 1950's period piece.

Big Love

The latest season of Big Love (which started a few weeks ago) has a story line of an unplanned pregnancy. Considering the nature of the show I don't think abortion is going to play into it though I'll be interested to see if it's mentioned at all. (So far it hasn't been but it's a relatively new story line.)

In Coronation Street, the

In Coronation Street, the English primetime soap, David Platt's girlfriend has an abortion without his knowledge, with the help of his mother Gail. When he finds out, he pushes Gail down the stairs and almost kills her.

Breakfast on Pluto

Is by far my favourite movie. It's set in London in the 70's. There is a scene in which the main character's best friend, Charlie, comes into the city to get an abortion. At the clinic, a nurse begins to speak to her about the termination procedure. Charlie responds "An abortion clinic, I thought this was a fertility clinic" as she walks out, her friend (left on a doorstep at birth, who is currently searching for his mother) asks her why she left.
"You said it'd be a disaster like you." "Worse, Probably" "But I love you, you fucking disaster. " and they walk away.
It's just the greatest scene.

WHO GIVES A FLYING

WHO GIVES A FLYING FUCK!!!!!!!!!!!

Teen Pregnancy

On the last episode of 30 rock (titled: goodbye, my friend) Liz befriends a pregnant teen and attempts to become the baby's potential adoptive mother.

The Crime of Father Amaro

This foreign film is in spanish w subtitles and it is about a priest having a romance with one of this parishoners. She ends up getting pregnant and against their beliefs and with the pressures of everyone finding out, they opt for abortion. Rather, he pressures her for an abortion. Because its illegal in Mexico to have abortions, she had to get a back alley abortion resulting in a hemorage and in the end, she dies. The movie ends with no one knowing that the priest got her pregnant and the blame was put on her ex. Idk if this helped you, but its one movie that came up from the top of my head.

Another movie that came to mind was fast times at richmond high where she gets an abortion after having a one night stand.

Hope this Helps

This foreign film is in spanish w subtitles and it is about a priest having a romance with one of this parishoners. She ends up getting pregnant and against their beliefs and with the pressures of everyone finding out, they opt for abortion. Rather, he pressures her for an abortion. Because its illegal in Mexico to have abortions, she had to get a back alley abortion resulting in a hemorage and in the end, she dies. The movie ends with no one knowing that the priest got her pregnant and the blame was put on her ex. Idk if this helped you, but its one movie that came up from the top of my head.

Also in fasttimes at richmond high, she gets pregnant from a one night stand and she gets an abortion

Sarah & Sarah

The unplanned (I hope) pregnancy of Sarah Palin's daughter has been all over TV during the last year. Does that count?

For a fictional show, how about "The Sarah Silverman Program"? There are many episodes that should qualify. I believe Laura Silverman's character works in an abortion clinic, or at least did at one point. In the episode entitled "The Clinic," Sarah reminisces fondly about her abortions throughout the years. Then during the second season, Sarah becomes pregnant, and somehow she doesn't realize it even despite all those previous pregnancies. F#@%'ed up show, that one.

In Treatment

In Treatment has discussed abortion (apparently he counseled one client to get an abortion, and another client[s] to keep the pregnancy. I missed most of the first season, but it is coming up in the second season.

On the show United States of Tara I believe the first episode she finds her daughter's morning after pills.