Daily Archive for March 5th, 2004

An update from Valentine’s Day

So you may recall that our friends stkyrice & aiyahh got married at San Francisco City Hall on Valentine’s Day (and, of course, that jozjozjoz got to be the Maid of Honor in an Undisclosed Location™!).

Evidently, aiyahh (Howard, on the left) and stkyrice (Efren, on the right) are now the World’s Most Famous Married Gay Asian Male Couple™.
JUST MARRIED!  Outside of City Hall!

If you’re in the SF Bay Area, you may be able to catch them should know that they are being interviewed on KTSF TV tonight to be part of a 5 part series on queer Asian couples in SF.

They’ve also been writtenup/interviewed by NHK (Japanese) TV, Kristina Wong, Fridae (Singapore), and at least one Filipino and Taiwanese newspaper. Unfortunately, it looks like the Fridae link went away before I could screen capture it. Grrrr…

If you find links or clips about Howard & Efren, please let me know!

So BossMan turns on the radio just now…

…as he is prone to do in the afternoon to catch a drive-time talk show to catch up on the latest news…

…and what do I hear, but…

SHE BANG! SHE BANG!
She Bangs!  She Bangs!

So I practically shrieked… WILLIAM HUNG!!!”

BossMan: Huh?

My assistant and I both get up and walk into his office to see what he was watching because we thought he had the TV on.

He’s one of the most popular guys on the internet right now!
Marry Will!
So then we ended up having to explain to BossMan who Will Hung is and why he has been the internet’s hottest heartthrob since his appearance on American Idol. He thanked us for teaching him something new today. Hee hee.

BossMan had been hoping to get the latest scoop on Martha Stewart, but instead got the Will Hung version of the Ricky Martin song… BWAHAHAHAHA!

What? The UPN is doing a reality TV show that might be offensive?

THAT’S SHOCKING! [/sarcasm]

I don’t want to judge before seeing the show, but despite what UPN says (see excerpt below), I really doubt that UPN is the network that will depict the Amish with”utmost respect and decency.”

UPN Show Is Called Insensitive to Amish

By BERNARD WEINRAUB

Published: March 4, 2004

LOS ANGELES, March 3 — Several weeks ago UPN, a sister network to CBS, announced a new reality series tentatively called “Amish in the City,” in which Amish teenagers would face the shock and temptations of the big city for the first time.

The idea seemed similar to CBS’s plan last year to fashion a reality comedy out of a 1960’s sitcom, calling it “The Real Beverly Hillbillies.” which was to follow the lives of a rural, lower-middle-class family as it moved into a luxurious Beverly Hills house. That plan foundered when rural groups protested that the show was intended to denigrate the rural poor.

“We couldn’t do the `Beverly Hillbillies,’ ” Leslie Moonves, the CBS chairman, who also oversees UPN, told television critics and reporters in January. But the Amish, he joked, “don’t have quite as good a lobbying effort.”

Mr. Moonves may have been mistaken. Within the last few weeks a campaign to stop the show has been started by lawmakers, rural groups, Pennsylvania Dutch tourism officials and representatives of the Amish. The opposition to the Amish show seems even more powerful than the one that has grounded the prospects of a new “Beverly Hillbillies.” Chris Ender, a CBS spokesman, said of the “Hillbillies”: “It’s an idea that’s still being considered, but we haven’t made a production commitment toward the show.”

The Center for Rural Strategies, a nonprofit organization based in Whitesburg, Ky., has helped organize opposition to the Amish show, at the request of groups representing the Amish. Dee Davis, the president of Rural Strategies and a former documentary filmmaker, singled out Viacom, the owner of CBS and UPN. “Once again Viacom has created a reality show where rural people were going to be these curios,” Mr. Davis said. “Viacom’s got plenty of ways to make money without ridiculing rural people.”

Tim Marema, vice president of the group, said: “From our perspective this is a replacement series for `The Real Beverly Hillbillies.’ It’s another way of attacking rural people and employing scorn and ridicule on a group of Americans because of where they’re from, what they look like, what they sound like. What CBS and Viacom are saying about the Amish is they’re rural and therefore they don’t count.”

UPN, in a statement in response to criticisms of the show, denied that the series sought to demean the Amish and said it would depict them with the “utmost respect and decency.” No date has been set for the series. The statement said that since the show “is still in the early development stage, we sincerely hope that any judgment will be reserved until the show is produced.” UPN and CBS officials declined further comment. [full story, subscription required]

And I know that ProfessorEric’s ‘friend’ (not the one who worked on ‘Playing It Straight,’ but another one… we need to give her a name instead of just calling her “friend”) really thought that “The Littlest Groom” on FOX depicted little people in a positive light, but just like The Professor’s “Bad Gay Media” rant, I think portraying marginalized groups of people through stereotype and gimmick is dangerous. In “The Littlest Groom,” folks argued that the little women live in a world of regular-sized women with whom they must compete… well, then the regular-sized women should have been contestants from the very beginning (instead of being thrown in later on as a stupid “twist” gimmick).

As much as I’m happy that Queer Eye has been such a success, one unintended consequence seems to have been that folks think it’s okay to play up stereotypes in these “reality TV” shows, so long as it’s funny or will draw ratings.

Stay tuned for more reality TV, dumb stereotypes, and stupid publicity stunt rants to come… I don’t think professoreric or I are anywhere near done yet…




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