On the Telly

[Content Note: Misogyny.]

Last night, Iain and I saw a few adverts for different sitcoms we don't watch, and every single one of the clips contained a joke about how a straight man hated his female partner and/or was trying to avoid having to spend time with her.

I'm presuming that most of these sitcoms also feature the tiresome trope of the wife/girlfriend thinking her male partner is a stupid, crude, useless, embarrassing jackass, which is also garbage.

But one of the things that makes that particular trope so appalling is the fact that, despite finding their male partners to be stupid, crude, useless, embarrassing jackasses, these sitcom ladies still clearly love them dearly. I mean, who hasn't seen an episode of Everybody Loves the King of Home Improvement According to Mike O'Malley and not thought: "Why does she even care about this reprehensible heapshit?"

These terrible men are deeply loved.

Their female partners, on the other hand, are reviled. Even and especially by their own partners. The worst punishment in the world for a sitcom husband is to have to spend time with his sitcom wife.

As I've previously observed: It ain't women who are the primary gatekeepers of that bullshit. It's other men. About the last place on earth you'll find active feminists is in the executive offices of mainstream studios.

This is the Patriarchy played for laughs: Men are terrible, but deserving of love. Women are even worse, and deserve naught but seething hatred.

[Related Reading: Today in Backlash Broadcasting.]

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