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Sunday, May 6, 2012

Can we try a new theme now?

Now, I'm not one of those people who is like, "Don't put a gay character on Glee, the teenagers might catch the gay!" I don't spend my time worrying about what the teenagers are watching on TV. That said, I do worry about a certain theme that seems to be taking over the adolescent/young-adult entertainment realm.

This is about to make me sound old. Try not to judge.


I don't believe that just because a teenage girl sees a pregnant teen, that she will instantly go out and become pregnant as well. I'm intelligent enough (and liberal enough) to realize it's not that simple. But I'm going to go out on a limb and say the way infidelity is portrayed as completely normal (even necessary) to young people could become a problem.


(This is just an example, of course. I'm not referring to just this one story line, but so many on TV and in literature these days.)

Last night I was watching The Vampire Diaries, which I admit, I love. But I'm getting tired of the theme: Elena Loves Stephan - or Wait, Does She Love Damon? - No, She Loves Stephan... Probably; Except When She Makes Out With Damon. This is a circle theme I'm sick to death of. Elena is a likable character, but in real life I'd just come right out and call her a whore.


I get it, OK? They're brothers, they both love her, and they're both unbelievably hot, strong, and dangerous. It would, in fact, be hard to choose between them. The trouble is they are so quick to forgive her; she's never actually had to go through any torment over the way she's treated these boys. They just come running back to her, "Elena, what can I do to save you?" no matter what hideously whore-ish thing she's done to them. The fact is, reality would have kicked her ass for being such a jerk. In reality, infidelity RUINS LIVES. The love triangle is exciting... which is why infidelity happens to real people in real relationships. The reason I worry about its affect on society is because it seems to be the only plot line available lately. When did a love story stop being good enough if there wasn't cheating involved?

Anyone who has actually experienced infidelity knows there is no such thing as a happy ending to such stories. 

3 comments:

  1. Ok, this might get long, so bear with me.

    I'm with you on being a little tired of love triangles. They are everywhere lately and it would be nice if it would just stop for a little bit. But, the thing that makes me crazy is everyone blaming the girl for being such a slut/whore/manipulative bitch/etc. Because if the situation was reversed and it was a guy and two girls, people wouldn't be so judgemental.

    Don't get me wrong, people would still think he's a jerk, but for the most part, because he's a single teenage guy, the fact that he's dating around and exploring a relationship with two different girls would be viewed as pretty normal. "He's a guy. It's what they do." But we, the girls, are supposed to be above such mistakes. At 17. Sure. We have that love thing all figured out by the time we graduate high school. It's an unbelievably unfair expectation.

    But with the case with Vampire Diaries, while Elena is hardly handling the situation well, she's only 18, and with everything else gonig on, you can't really blame her for not having some time to work out her feelings for each guy. She's taking it as she goes, in between life threatening situations. And these boys can hardly bitch and complain. Stefan pushed her away repeatedly almost the entire season. It's a bit selfish of him to moan when she starts moving on. Does it suck that it might be with his brother? Definitely. But he has no grounds for whining. Damon also knew Elena was still stuck on Stefan when he let his feelings be known, so he can't complain either that she's all confused now. It sucks waiting for the person you love to find closure from a past relationship, but he wasn't exactly ignorant of where her heart was to begin with, so he can't grumble too much either.

    Do I think she's handling the love triangle thing well? Hardly. But she's not cheating on anyone. She's been single all season. And she's being pretty honest (most of the time) about how she feels with each boy. I don't think that makes her slutty. I think it makes her a confused teenage girl.

    *sigh* Anyway. That's just my thoughts on the matter. Sometimes we're...more accepting of a guy in this situation than a girl. But that's not fair. It's stuff like this that leads to slut shaming and victim blaming, because we all think the girl should "know better".

    You know I love your face, and you're one of my favorite people ever. I just had to give my two cents on this one. Don't hate me now! Love you!!!

    Jenn

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  2. I don't watch the Vampire Diaries but I get your point and I'm with you on this one. The theme does seem to be everywhere and almost never do they explore the pain, regret or repercussions that usually come with real infidelity. I think for a lot of young people, their views on sex are already so casual, it is a little worrisome - now I probably sound old! haha! I would be great to have something on Gossip Girl or some other show with beautiful, young and super rich kids and show a less glamorous side of casual sex with multiple partners - STD anyone? Pregnancy scare? Someone's heart crushed? Or just have a character with real conviction and honesty.

    On True Blood (that's my vampire show), they did a very similar thing with Sookie, Bill and Eric but it I found it to be the most silly and ridiculous story line of the season. That's definitely not a kids show and it's totally fantasy so it flew but still...it got a little much. Great post!

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  3. I love the following quote from your post: "Infidelity RUINS LIVES". I couldn't agree more. Anything shown to impressionable people (which we all are) as normal will eventually change their lives - for good or for bad. We need to be willing to stick with the classics and weed out our culture's smut at least in our own homes!

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