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Monday, February 10, 2003

Over the past few months, I've been watching a bunch of old musicals. Tivo has been very conscientious about collecting them for me: Royal Wedding, Easter Parade, Funny Face, My Fair Lady. The thing that's driving me absolutely bananas with this films is that the man always mistreats the woman, flies into a jealous rage, and she runs from him. And then after one additional scene, generally she realizes that he is the only man for her and she can't possibly live without him. It's making me scream. About forty minutes from the end of Funny Face tonight, I said, "If she ends up with him (Fred Astaire), I'm going to scream. The movie concluded and I screamed. He had not 30 minutes earlier, one day in the movie timeline, shown himself to be a completely jealous asshole, dragging her out of the cafe and away from the conversation she was having and declaring that she would never speak to that man again. That man was the professor she came all the way to Paris to meet. Sure, it turned out about 20 minutes later that he was letching on her (in a weird precursor to Will Riker style), and instead of determining that both the guys in her life were being total jerks, she ran back to Fred Astaire. Screaming ensued. Between that and Professor Henry Higgins and the stupid scenarios in Royal Wedding and Easter Parade and hell, just about any movie musical from the fifties or sixties, it's no wonder American women are so fucked in the head. "Oh, he's jealous and he treats me badly, but I love him!" Gag me with a pitchfork. Ugh.

There are a lot of musicals I love - Singing in the Rain, Thoroughly Modern Millie, The Wizard of Oz, but damn, some of the second string of classics should be burned. Or at least not shown to anyone under 25. They're more damaging to the young female psyche than all the sex and violence on film today.


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