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Monday, April 7, 2008

Sexism in the Tudor House

Today, I bring you more feminist hysteria over absolutely nothing. At Feministing, they're busy hyperventilating over this promotional shot for Showtime's new series, The Tudors:

Feministing blogger Vanessa yelps:
I'm sure some of you love The Tudors... [b]ut I find this really disturbing.

It's not the first hyper-masculine, sexist ad the show has run ... but this over the top. While it does seem like Henry IIX's character is also sexualized in other ads and the show (the series itself seems to exude sex), spousal strangulation is just not screaming "hot" to me.

(The picture actually makes me wonder if it's a precursor to Anne Boleyn's beheading, which would make it even more unsettling; although I tend to doubt SHO is trying to incorporate historical cues into their marketing.)

I'm really curious to know how fans of the show feel about this image.

I will freely admit that I don't watch The Tudors. I never have, and you know what? I probably never will. But what is it about feminists screeching with outrage over the smallest possible offenses? I mean, jeez, overreacting much?

Really, who looks at that picture and thinks that it conveys "spousal strangulation" just because his hand is on her neck? Personally, I look at the picture and see a very, very sexy ad.

And, oh no, a precursor to Anne Boleyn's beheading?! What horrible sexism was Showtime trying to perpetuate?!

Um, maybe that Anne Boleyn was, in fact, beheaded.

How sexist!

This is the other ad that Feministing is all in a huff over:

Oh. My. Goodness. Look at Henry the 8th, sitting there surrounded by women baring cleavage. How horrifying! Look at how comfortable Showtime is with objectifying women!

Will new wave feminists never realize that by getting so upset about such minor things, they're doing the feminist movement more harm than good? There are women who are truly oppressed around the world, women who suffer real discrimination. But what's really important to the heavy-hitters in American feminism is abortion -- and apparently, ads for TV shows that are too overtly sexual. Interesting, though, is how sexual ads are deemed BAD, and yet women who sleep around like men are GOOD (Amanda Marcotte can tell you all about that).

True oppression, true discrimination, takes a backseat to petty shit like this. And that's why no one takes feminism seriously anymore.


mkfreeberg said...

Q: How many feminists does it take to change a light bulb?

A: That's Not Funny!!!

LordSomber said...

Feminists always seem to have a problem with historical fiction, unless it's been revised to flatter their tender egos.
While historical liberties are taken with "The Tudors," the attitudes of the sexes seem accurate for the times.

Baz said...

Looking at the comments on feministing, I'd guess about 3/4 of readers think it's perfectly appropriate, either sexy, or accurately reflecting Henry VIII attitude towards women (i.e., disturbing by design). Doesn't look like much of a huff over there at all, really.
So who's hyperventilating?

The Northern Virginia Conservative said...

Feministas are an extreme case of people looking to be offended.

I R A Darth Aggie said...

So who's hyperventilating?

Oh, perhaps the other 1/4 of the readers, and the bloggette?

But you knew that, didn't yah?

Baz said...

Oh, perhaps the other 1/4 of the readers, and the bloggette?

Yeah, a real groundswell, that is. My point is that 25% of anything is hardly representative of the whole.

So getting offended that 25% of feminists are offended by this poster is much ado about nothing, IMHO.

More significantly, saying that these 25% speak for feminists as a whole is just dishonest.

James said...

"Henry IIX's"????? Who taught Vanessa Roman numerals? Lordsomber has it right. I've just finished the first season on DVD and regret I don't have Showtime and will have to wait a year for the 2nd season to be released on DVD. They've done a good job with the history of a fascinating period. I was pleasantly surprised and wish we'd get more honest history without the whitewash.

mkfreeberg said...

So getting offended that 25% of feminists are offended by this poster is much ado about nothing, IMHO.


...anybody who's watched the feminist movement over time and has anything close to a decent memory about it, would have to notice it's the most easily-offended X% elite segment that ends up in charge of the whole mess, and calling the shots about where the feminism leviathan is going to be crawling next. This has been entirely consistent. Ten feminists meet, nine of them find something to be non-offensive, the tenth is offended. Feminism as a whole is, therefore, offended.

The average offense-threshold of the larger body, according to this observation, ends up being entirely irrelevant.

I would further add that this is a big part of the reason why, in times past, feminists championed "equality" and "choice" and nowadays they have very little to do with either one -- they're a lot more about special perks, and forcing everyone to do things the "right" way. Because over two generations the most extreme have been allowed to set the agenda.