Thursday, January 17, 2008


I watched a new show yesterday was Cashmere Mafia on ABC. I watched all three episodes available on the website and hated every minute of it. It's supposed to be network television's answer to Sex and the City or perhaps a nonsuburban, less lame Desperate Housewives. The premise? Four friends who met in business school are all high-power New York business women. They are powerful; they are winners. Except when it comes to relationships, with their husbands/boyfriends, with their children. In the pilot episode. One gets dumped because she's married to her job. One's fiance calls off the engagement because she beats him out of a new promotion. One has a husband who cheats because she's "as far removed from the idea of a wife he grew up with as one can be and still wear his ring and use his last name." The other one barely has time to deal with her passive husband, rowdy children, and delinquent nannies. The moral of the story? Women can't have it all.

That particular moral made me angry. You'd never see a show about four male friends who couldn't juggle their families and careers. Why is it only women who can't have it all? Aren't we past this yet? Yes, I get's difficult to have a successful career, successful relationships, and successful family lives. But why are women the only ones who are expected to choose?

The part I hated most was how the show operated around tired stereotypes. The successful women were ice queens who ran their homes like boardrooms and the rich stay at home moms were out to ensnare their husbands. The men were even worse. If I were a man watching television, I would be angry that all the depictions of men are so uniformly negative. In this particular show, the men were wimps across the board, passive, intimidated, and insecure.

I once posited that we watch shows where we recognize parts of ourselves in the characters. For instance, I once thought of myself as a Carrie and my dysfunctional relationship as being like the one she had with Big. What a load of shit. But somehow, the level of dissatisfaction and dysfunction on this show reached a new low. I wondered who recognized themselves in these characters and who was secretly wishing her life would turn out like one of theirs. I just kept thinking, who are these people? I don't know anyone like them. And, I don't want to. If art is imitating life in shows like these where dysfunctional relationships are the norm, that's just depressing.


  1. Enough with this girl power stuff. Didn't that go out of style with the Spice Girls? Live your live like you're on "Rock of Love!"

  2. Believe it or not, most people actually identify with stereotypes. Just learned that in a management class. Seems most shows hand feed you little bits at a time. This may be the rock bottom and as the season progresses it will pick up. I'm also wayyyy to optimistic.