As a 30-year-old, pop culture-loving, unmarried, short, dark-haired, bookish woman who loves to drink champagne and wear sequins, I'd have to change my name to Mindy if I wanted to fit any more squarely into The Mindy Project's target demographic. The show, which premieres September 25th but whose pilot is currently streaming on Hulu, stars creator Mindy Kaling as Mindy Lahiri, an OB/GYN who loves rom coms and fancies herself in the self-improvement montage part of life. Like its charming-yet-flawed protagonist, there are many things to love about this show (and a few things to just tolerate because, hey, it's generally likable and it's trying hard and everyone deserves a little slack now and then, right?).
I know I wasn't the only one who cheered when Sigourney Weaver's Elaine Barrish told a handsy Russian diplomat that she'd "fuck his shit up" on last night's premiere of Political Animals on USA. A star-studded "limited series" event (I think that is TVspeak for miniseries), the show is based not-so-loosely on the Clinton marriage if Hillary had told Bill to get lost after her failed presidential bid. So far, it's being hailed by some as a step forward for strong women on television and derided by others for being sucky. Both sides have a point.
Sure, it's summer and that means you're more likely to find me streaming old episodes of Pretty Little Liars on my laptop than watching a season premiere (no, YOU stayed up until 2:00 last night to find out what happened at the dance-a-thon!), but the fall shows are only two short months away, with them comes the Mindy Project.
Check out this new promo for the show, where Mindy talks work/life balance while walking through the hospital where she is a doctor:
I love illustrator Kyle Hilton. Based on the paper dolls he makes, the two of us should be best friends who watch every television show and movie together always. Case in point: His new set, a collaboration with Vulture, is of the cast of GIRLS!
Hannah Horvath, complete with union suit, laptop, and tub cupcake.
There are plenty of shows on television right whose characters sport highly realistic wardrobes, and there are just as many that definitely don't. I crowdsourced (read: asked people on Facebook and Twitter) some examples of both recently and have ranked 10 shows based on a completely unscientific wardrobe believability index. My only criteria were that the show in question: A. is currently on the air, and B. takes place in 2012 (sorry Mad Men and Game of Thrones, I love your clothes but I don't know how believable it is for Jon Snow to be wearing a yak fur). Check out the rankings after the jump, and be sure to add your own in the comments!
It has been a privilege and pleasure to write for Bitch for the last eight weeks. Thanks to Kelsey and Kjerstin for all of their support, and thank you to everyone who read, commented on, and shared my posts. As a long-time Bitch fan, I’ve felt honored to share this space with you and participate in much-needed conversations about the state of bisexual visibility in the media.
In the comments of Wednesday’s post, Anita pointed out that Queer As Folk is not the only Showtime program that struggles in its depiction of bisexuality. When discussing depictions of biphobia in the gay community, one can’t avoid The L Word. The difference between the shows as I see it, however, is that if Queer As Folk suffers from bi invisibility, The L Word suffers from straight-up bi loathing. Rather than giving you a play-by-play of every epic bi fail (if you’re interested in that, After Ellen has a comprehensive list), I want to focus on one particular episode—one that deals with bisexuality and straight privilege.
(Note: This post contains spoilers about Queer As Folk.)
It was the Spring of 2003. My three best friends and I were taking a break from studying for our math final exam and wandering around our local video store, searching for a DVD to watch at my house that night. Midway through the New Releases aisle, we paused. There it was: Season Two of the American Queer As Folk. None of us had ever watched it, but we knew it by reputation from friends who were fans. As active members of our school’s Gay-Straight Alliance and avid consumers of queer media, we knew that Queer As Folk was the most overtly gay television show out there, and we couldn’t wait to give it a try. We rented the first disc, and all plans of further studying that night were put on hold. Never mind, of course, that we’d never watched Season One—we’d catch up to it later. All we knew was that we had to start watching it immediately.
Nearly a decade later, Queer As Folk has remained one of my all-time favorite television shows; other than Seinfeld, it is the only show of which I’ve seen every episode more than once. It’s flawed in its depictions of diversity, and it’s sometimes a bit too goofy for its own good, but the storylines are compelling, the characters are well-developed, and the issues addressed—covering everything from bullying to parenting to addiction to serodiscordant relationships—are handled sensitively and realistically. All of them, that is, except for sexual fluidity.
Throughout this series, I have tried very hard not to write about the gigantic elephant in the room: Dan Savage. He’s a controversial figure, particularly when it comes to his statements on bisexuality, and though I quoted him in my post about Bi the Way, I haven’t wanted to dwell on him. I find much of his commentary on bisexuality thoughtless and insensitive, but he insists he is not biphobic, and I choose to believe him. I may disagree with a lot of his ideas, but I like some of them, I respect his efforts to campaign against LGBT youth bullying and suicide, and I am not interested in making assumptions about what lies in his heart.
But in discussing bisexuality and the media, mentioning Savage is unavoidable. And since his new MTV show, Savage U, premiered on Tuesday, there’s no better time to open this can of worms.
Last June, NPR reported that the "end of gender" was near, citing everything from gender-neutral prom courts to clothing ads to suggest that perhaps people aren’t so hung up on the male/female gender binary anymore. But despite the growing trend of gender neutrality, the response to disappearing gender constructs in politics and in popular culture isn't always positive.