November 17, 2010 · 10:49 pm
“Dash, Flash, Crash”
November 17th, 2010
Last week I posted about concerns regarding Modern Family’s relationship with questions of race and ethnicity (albeit focused on the former), and over at TV Overmind the commenters were…well, they were angry. My point was not to say that the show is racist, but rather that there are moments when questions relating to sensitive issues are located within the production of the series rather than character actions.
Let’s take, for example, Phil’s “If you ain’t white, you ain’t right” t-shirt which angers an African American taxi cab. It’s highly offensive, sure, but it plays into his cluelessness in ways we recognize. It is the intersection of his inability to realize what his words mean with questions of race in today’s society, and its continued presence (“And this year I predict total White domination!”) makes it seem less like that single flashback is necessary in order to construct the joke. It seems like something Phil would do, makes me laugh, and happens to transition into the best episode since “Fizbo.”
In other words, next time you hear me ragging on Modern Family? Manny’s birthday.
Continue reading →
Filed under Modern Family
Tagged as ABC, B.B. Gun, Bitrthday Family Camp, Cameron, Claire, Danny Zuker, Dash Flash Crash, Entertainment, Episode 8, Flash Mob, Free Your Mind, Gloria, Jesse Tyler Ferguson, Julie Bowen, Luke, Manny, Mitchell, Phil, Race, Review, Rico Rodriguez, Season 2, Sofia Vergara, Television, TV, White Team
November 9, 2010 · 9:01 pm
“Never Been Kissed”
November 9th, 2010
Hype is Glee’s currency of choice, for reasons that make a lot of sense: they want to sell downloads, they want to trend on Twitter, and so I understand why they released the full performances of both “Teenage Dream” and “Start Me Up/Livin’ on a Prayer” ahead of this week’s episode.
And yet, there is something very weird about the hype for “Never Been Kissed,” in that the musical numbers promote joyous musical explosion while the commercials for the episode promote the start of what Chris Colfer refers to as Glee’s “bullying saga” (which each writer will put their stamp on during a three-episode arc). While I talk a lot – probably too much – about the idea of the 3 Glees as it relates to the three writers, there are also ways in which the promotion and hype surrounding the series becomes highly contradictory. It is not that an episode can’t be both of these things, per se, but rather that the promotion works to the much-hyped extremes and fails to properly merge the two modes.
The result is that this episode inspires extreme trepidation: the word saga gives me great pause, and the musical numbers revealed concerns that had me pre-writing my criticism in my head late last week. And while there are parts of “Never Been Kissed” which had the potential to be something of value, the tonal mash-up is so extreme that all we’re left with is…well, nothing of value.
Continue reading →
Filed under Glee
Tagged as Analysis, Artie, Bieste, Blaine, Brad Falchuk, Bradley Buecker, Brittany, Bully, Bullying, Chris Colfer, Cold Shower, Darren Criss, Episode 6, Free Your Mind, Homosexuality, Jersey Shore, Kiss, Kurt Hummel, Livin' on a Prayer, Music, Never Been Kissed, Puck, Review, Santana, Season 2, Start Me Up, Stop in the Name of Love, Teenage Dream, Television, Tina, TV, Who's the Boss, Will