I can remember hearing about a study which found many people use the characters on their favorite television shows as surrogate “friends.” I wonder what those same researchers would make of our post-Televison-Without-Pity cultural landscape, in which a endless stream of writer analyses–sometimes accompanied by roundtable discussions–dissects every detail of every episode of popular television shows, making up a big chunk of the internet. If online effluvia is an indicator, many viewers now spend more time thinking about characters on TV than they possibly could about their real-life friends and maybe even their own partners, family members and selves. We spend so much time thrilling to drug dealing, beheadings, poisonings, secret identities, sudden, improbable career success, zombies, and vampires that we decry as “boring” the few series that have realistically explored issues that are more likely to affect us day-to-day: relationships, work and friendship.
Boardwalk Empire Written by Leigh KolbSpoilers ahead Boardwalk Empire returned for its fourth season on Sunday, Sept. 8. This season is poised to continue important representation of struggles involving gender and race in the award-winning show, which is aesthetically gorgeous and well-written. The few, but incredibly important, female characters on Boardwalk Empire are fascinating. I wrote last year […]
‘Boardwalk Empire’: Margaret Thompson, Margaret Sanger, and the Cultural Commentary of Historical Fiction
In 1923, Margaret Sanger opened the first legal birth control clinic in America. Almost 90 years later, HBO’s Boardwalk Empire is reminding audiences of those early struggles for women’s reproductive health and education, which don’t seem as foreign as they should. In the premiere episode of season 3, Margaret (Schroeder) Thompson hears a radio story about Carrie […]
The rosterof newtelevision shows premiering each year in the fall ought to be an exciting time for any TV fan. Unfortunately, I am a jaded, cynical curmudgeon, burned by my previous experiences in the field of new fall shows, and I read the previews with dread roiling in the pit of my stomach. In our […]
All the way back in January 2011, guest writer Amanda ReCupido shared her take on the first season of HBO’s award-winning Boardwalk Empire. Since then, the post has been getting steady traffic, and currently stands as #8 in 2011. ________ HBO’s Boardwalk Empire With its first season complete and two Golden Globes under its belt […]
Something to break up the long, hot summer: the 2011 Primetime Emmy nominations are out. Here is a selection of the women nominated for acting. Stay tuned for an analysis of female nominees behind the camera. For the entire list of nominees, visit the official Academy of Television Arts & Sciences website. Lead Actress in […]
With its first season complete and two Golden Globes under its belt (Best TV Drama and Best Actor in a TV Drama), Boardwalk Empire, HBO’s prohibition-era Sopranos/Mad Men hybrid, has gotten plenty of attention. And it’s something feminists should be paying attention to as well. Like Mad Men, the show doesn’t gloss over the sexist […]