Friday, February 3, 2012

Friday Frenzy: The Manic-Depressive Shopaholic Shawty

A frenzied WahYizzle is a bipolar WahYizzle (I realize this sounds like a Pokémon description and I’m okay with that).

Furious and Feminist:

I love New Girl, but this analysis of Zooey Deschanel’s character is spot on. Even though I have to agree with Jennifer Wright's article, I’m not going to stop watching it because the show isn’t over yet, so there’s still time for her to grow out of the naïve, childlike girl with a heart of gold trope (yes, that is intended to be a pun of sorts, now RECOGNIZE!). Here's a video by Anita Sarkeesian on the many manifestations of manic pixie dream girl in contemporary pop culture.

Happy and Materialistic:

Anyone want to line up with me on Sunday, Feb. 5 for the launch of Jason Wu for Target line?

Picture from
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Hope you guys have a great weekend!



  1. Read the Jennifer Wright article and found it fascinating. There's some good scholarship in there tracing the evolution of the archetype through the last 50 years. I do think that she draws entirely the wrong conclusions from the characters. These are counter-culture figures designed to contrast and undermine the established norms of the time. So, in the 50's the search is for what's desirable in a woman that is anything but a proper housewife and mother. In the present day the seach continues, looking for what's desirable in women who aren't capable, driven, professionals. These characters don't have to be good role models because that character type is so prevalent already. Rather, they seek to show what is wrong/lacking in the established values of the day.

    In addition, It's perfectly fine to showcase characters that are flawed, even deeply so. The audience is meant to be aware of the flaws, and to see these flaws in a new light. The works in question ask us to challenge our values, to see what those values exclude, and to come to a more balanced perspective.

    Finally, this is entertainment. Good, ever wholesome role models are rarely interesting subjects. If there's no conflict, there's no story.

    1. That's a great point. I wonder, though, how that's going to affect the conversation on feminism, especially considering the gender disparities in Hollywood, both on and off the screen, and their influence on the time.

    2. Thanks for the comments! I think its important that you pointed out how characters may be shaped by the social norms of their time. Still, I don't think it's really a matter of portraying good role models on screen, but diversifying the character types for all genders, sexes, races, sexual orientations, and so forth. It is a concern for feminist cultural critics because this type of character occurs too many times in the form of a female actor (and a certain type of female actor) to influence how we think and what we think about women. It's up to you how seriously you want to take this criticism, but at least it's food for thought!