Friday, May 30, 2008

Taking it personally

Wow, there seems to be a fair amount of vitriol out there for the characters from Sex and the City, as well as the women who play them. Apparently, they’re too shallow, they’re too obsessed with sex, they’re too old to be sexy, and they spend a lot of money on accessories.

Who do they think they are? James Bond?

Come to think of it, I’ve never heard any of those criticisms leveled at him. Hm.

When the show first started on HBO, the reviewers and self-appointed social commentators criticized the show because they said that the female characters were really gay male characters. Why? Because they talked about, and enjoyed, sex a little too much? I remember thinking at the time that whoever says that women don’t talk or act like those characters, does not know many women.

Look, I and my girlfriends cannot be the only women on earth who openly discuss the merits of ass fucking. I just don’t believe that we are. We can’t be the only ones who compare bikini wax horror stories. We can’t be the only ones who covet each other’s shoes, or sit around the pool and read trashy magazines and gossip.

Was the show completely unrealistic in its depictions of the standard of living available to women in NYC? OF COURSE IT WAS. IT WAS A COMEDY ON TELEVISION. Television comedies are not realistic. Rednecks are not really that adept at irony. Ugly fat girls with no style don’t really work for fashion magazines. Network executives are not fascinating characters. And nobody really likes Charlie Sheen.

What’s worse about the release of the film, is that now that the SATC characters are in their (ew!) forties, a whole lotta people are apparently grossed out that the women are still not only having sex, but talking about it, for crying out loud. It’s been made plain by the reactions of more than a few reviewers that they find it fucking unseemly or something.

Also, apparently, they’re cougars. Yes, they’re all in their forties and lusty. Therefore, cougars.

To which I say, if they are, then so am I.

Okay, I have a boyfriend, but if I didn’t, I’d be out there on the scene too, people. And without the benefit of a hair and makeup stylist and an award-winning costume designer. I’d be a 47-year-old woman living in the big city, looking for love in a cut-rate wardrobe. So what would that make me, then? Sub-cougar? If my life were to be written about by someone at the New York Press, would I be similarly pathetic and shallow for pursuing sex and talking a lot about men? Would my life be dismissed as too closely resembling a gay man’s to be authentically female? Would someone put me on the cover of a magazine with tape over my mouth and tell me to shut the fuck up, already?

Or, in the manner of Carrie Bradshaw, when is the world going to lose their fear of middle-aged pussy?

Because the whole cougar thing? Really fucking tiresome, guys. My sexuality is ridiculous to you. I get it, already.

Here's an idea. Fuck off. Let me have my fun little movie, and you can go and see whatever poignant expression of the art of filmmaking that Judd Apatow is up to these days, okay?


Johnny Yen said...

On Wednesday nights, I've been watching reruns of SATC with a couple of female co-workers (one of whom is middle-aged like me), and have really begun to dig the show. I think that it's a lot like people who criticized "The Last Temptation of Christ"-- they obviously had not seen it.

Matt said...

I have to admit that I've never watched the show. However, as a man I can tell you that you have nothing to worry about if someone calls you a cougar.

What makes a women sexy is her attitude. If you feel sexy, act sexy, and make an effort to be sexy then you are sexy. Some people make fun of me but I believe that the sexiest thing in the world is a women that is sexy and knows it.

Beauty doesn't have an age, size, color or shape. Keep being 47 and sexy and support other women who do and forget about people that don't agree.


Lisa said...

I have never seen a single episode of this goddamn show. And I probably won't see the movie, either, but that's just because I never go to the movies.

Assfucking is nice.

Mnmom said...

Never watched the show, won't see the movie. But I'm 46 and LOVE sex, so do my friends, and we have one really good bikini wax story.

JP said...

wow! a brilliant, well-written piece. the james bond thing killed me. SATC for women is like a Die Hard for men - purely escapist entertainment with impossible in real life characters and lifestyles. nothing at all wrong with that. and mea culpa... i officially apologize for ever having used and enjoyed the term 'cougar'.

i hope there is a mentally retarded blogger who writes something as good about the equally-as-offensive-if-not-more-so-than-cougar use of the term 'retard' in casual conversation...

My deficit of cognitive capacity is ridiculous to you. I get it already.

Doc said...

I've seen your photos dear, and in the immortal words of Marring Sam from "Lil Abner", "You got more left over than most folks start out with." No worries. Given the oppurtunity, I'd rather have a fling with a woman with a few years under her belt over some teenie-bopper any day. Nothing beats experience. There is no reason why a woman shouldn't know what she likes and persues it, especially when it come to matters of the flesh. Hell, we could use a little bit more love in the world, and barring that, a little lust isn't really such a bad thing either.

Just to satisfy my own perverse curiosity, how often do you find yourself discussing "the merits of ass fucking"?

I'm afraid I beg to differ on the redneck and irony comment. I'm a redneck and it isn't lost on me. Well, most of the time.


Doc said...

P.S.- You didn't happen to read the "Want Free Beer?" article in this magazine did you? I'd like to know where to sign up.


Distributorcap said...

you mean the media is an again showing their obsession with youth and that once you hit 4-0 it is over...

great culture huh?

this is NO different than companies who refuse to believe anyone over the age of 5-0 has a nickel to spend money

Amy B. said...

Amen, sister. Thank you for stating your case eloquently, and sans anger. It is tiresome, this general flustered-ness over this movie. Dudes, it's friendship, clothes, shoes, sex, and love. With some drama and goofiness to make it more interesting. Relax. Nothing bad will happen to you, and you just might have some fun.

Jess said...

I enjoyed the show and the movie. I gotta say, though, the show/movie reminds me a lot of reading a Vogue or Glamour-type magazine. Fun & enjoyable, but ultimately it makes me feel bad about myself. That I'm not thin enough, or rich enough, or have sex enough, or eat at the most fabulous restaurants, or get waved to the front of the line at clubs, or wear sequined dresses, etc...

I guess that's MY problem, but I think men are threatened by the show for similar reasons. When Mr. Big said "I got it" about the penthouse apartment (and later, the stuff with the closet), Mr. Pibb openly gagged beside me in the theater, heh.

Other than the stupid fashion montages, we both loved the movie, however.

Also, if I can be a quarter as sexy NOW as Samatha is at 50+, I would consider myself very lucky indeed.

GETkristiLOVE said...

Unrealistic? I thought the S&TC writers took the script from the Mexico scenes straight from our last trip to Rocky Point. You know who never waxes her bush!

vikkitikkitavi said...

All: SATC beat Indiana Jones this weekend! Fuck yeah!

JY: You know, you really should see the uncensored version of the show. Like one million times better. I can't watch it on TBS because all the scenes they cut make it practically unrecognizable to me. Netflix it.

Matt: Forget about people who don't agree?! Oh, Matt, how little you know me. But I'm loving the compliments, keep up the good work.

Lisa: You know, I hesitated to write a big defense of it, because it is fluff, it's just fluff that I happen to dig a lot.

MNMom: Well, if you post the waxing story, send me the link.

JP: Hey, sweetie, good to hear from you! And you know, I don't mean to declare a jihad on the whole cougar thing, but it started out to be sort of narrowly (if still offensively) defined, and now it seems like it's being applied to any woman over 40 who still dares to show an interest in sex, and to me, well, them's fighting words.

Doc: How often? Um, not often. But when we did, it certainly did strike me how similar the tactics and reactions of men are when it comes to getting a slice of cornhole pie.

Oh, and I did not read the article about free beer. I have been taken in by the promise of free beer before, and then you always end up moving someone's armoire.

DCap: Not so much over for men over 40, though. Ever hear the story about Faye Dunaway being offered the part of Michelle Pfeiffer's mother in "Wolf"? She reportedly said "I've played Jack Nicholson's love interest. I'm not going to play the mother of Jack Nicholson's love interest."

Amy B: Was I sans anger? I certainly didn't mean to be.

Jess: I know what you're saying about the Vogue effect, but for some reason SATC has never induced that in me. Just some severe cases of shoe envy.

GKL: Oh my god, don't remind me. It was like she was smuggling squirrels.

Spooney said...

I thought the definition of a cougar was an older woman who chases after much younger men, not just any horny woman over 40.

dguzman said...

I was going to write A-FUCKING-MEN, but then I got a little creeped out by the letter "A," who's got to be at least a few hundred years old, fucking anyone, much less a guy.

Grant Miller said...

I've never seen a second of this show mainly because I hardly watch TV unless it's baseball.

There's no baseball in this show, right?

As you were saying about ass fucking...

Johnny Yen said...

Actually, my friends/coworkers, one of whom is a longtime working actress who can't get work anymore because she's middle-aged (look up Karol Kent on, fill the censored parts in for me, which might actually be better than getting the original.

'Bubbles' said...

Smuggling squirrels... hahahahahahaha!!!!