Watch Me Entertain Myself!

Sacha Guitry once said, "You can pretend to be serious, but you can't pretend to be witty." Oh yes, I'm the great pretender.
(pilot episode: 20 January 2004)

Monday, October 08, 2007

Two Sides

How fascinating! After posting about the Desperate Housewives issue, the reactions were understandably divided, in more ways than one.

Here in my Blogspot, the comments are on one side:

Anonymous said...

Ah... very well-articulated. I do agree that the succeeding reactions post-apology is a display of OA-ness. Almost seems like a 'desperate' (pun fully intended) attempt to milk the publicity mill. I do agree that one should disect the character of Susan and understand what she is all about. Clumsy, ignorant, and a blabbermouth. Her dialogs are mostly flippant and not be be taken seriously. I recently saw a Filipino movie starring Sam Milby and Toni Gonzaga. In one scene where they were going through the streets of Tondo, Gonzaga told Milby (playing the character of an Am-Boy), "palibhasa kayong mga Amerikano hindi mahilig maligo!". Should Americans take offense to that line and demand an apology from the producers?
10/07/2007 11:09 AM


My thoughts exactly. Some people just take some things way too seriously. All this sturm and drang for what? -- a line uttered by a bimbo-ish TV character in a comedy show about desperate housewives. Sheesh.
10/07/2007 12:13 PM said...

it's the Pinoy's victim mentality. he's api and therefore blameless and should get away with everything moreover, other people should help him and give him everything so he doesnt lift a finger.

it's so much easier to fall in line in a gameshow preying on luck, chance and your lifestory than actually finding a regular job.

10/07/2007 8:04 PM

Raymond said...

Bravo, McVie! Excellent post! I thought that the line was really funny. And, hey, after all the scandal at the nursing board exams, don't we deserve it? I say that the OA reactions are simply a way for these grandstanding politicos to appear like they're doing something worthwhile, when, in fact, they're only displaying their pathetic lack of sophistication.
10/08/2007 10:59 AM

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But in my LiveJournal, they’re on the other side:

2007-10-06 11:22 am UTC (link)

I agree with the level-headedness. The apology should be enough. I disagree though with what you said here,

"I see that line less an attack on the Philippine medical community but more poking fun at the ignorance and biases of a character."

Looking at how the episode was crafted, the joke wasn't in anyway connected to Susan (aside from the fact that she said it), much less a means to poke fun at her ignorance or biases. I mean, Susan is not THAT ignorant or biased. Assuming for argument's sake that that was the intent, then it was very poorly executed. At the very least, they should apologize for that.

I'm guessing it was an arbitrary choice on the part of the writers, and that there was really no intent to malign anyone. But, well, you know what they say about the road to hell. In this case, intent is not the point but the damage (that might be) wrought. Statements like these seem innocuous, but (and as an adman, I'm sure you'll agree) words have more power than most people realize.

2007-10-07 02:58 pm UTC (link)

I took offense. I am seeing this from the point of view of a Philippine medical student slaving his butt off through coffee-pumped nights of pharmacology review, only to have his future professional reputation shaken for the sake of a little media gratification. I think part of my anxiety stems from the fear that some TV viewers are incapable of distinguishing TV from reality or humor from bigotry (especially from a character who doesn't really have a tract record of superditz-like ignorance as shafts mentioned), and some TV viewers happen to be people who get sick and go to doctors for consultation.

* * * * *

What a funny coincidence! And speaking of funny, here’s what Alec Mapa, a Fil-American actor & comedian, says about his brand of humor:

Personally, I think political correctness is another form of censorship and a real comedy killer. If I had to constantly worry about offending people, my act would consist of knock-knock jokes.

Well, they did say: “Dying is easy, comedy is hard.” And yes, I still like it hard.


Nelson said...

Personally I don't find it offensive, because it was clearly meant as a joke in that situation (but whether or not it was done in good taste remains subjective -- in my opinion, the writers got a little careless, knowing that we are living in a very politically-correct world).

The Malu Fernandez fiasco is a different bird altogether. I read her full article online. I actually agree with her observations of her Filipino co-passengers. Granted, they were annoyingly loud and all over the place, but that's just who they are -- and it's not a crime to be such. Perhaps their only crime was to embarrass and annoy (even impede on her limited personal space?) Ms Fernandez. I am personally annoyed at Filipinos travelers in general for being so noisy, but I wouldn't dare criticize them for being themselves. Ms Fernandez was just plain offensive -- and I am offended with her arrogance.

I fully support that Ms Fernandez humbly apologize to Filipino OFWs (do I consider myself as OFW?) but not the DH's careless slip. I just think there are Filipinos who make a big deal of this. I suspect they want blood, even though the people concerned have repeatedly apologized.


re the grandstanding politicos: the ABS-CBN report quoted a politico referring to Teri Hatcher as Teri Thatcher. but maybe i misheard him?

BoobooStrider said...

yes, I agree Malu's case is soooo different from this one. For one, she is criticizing FELLOW Filipinos and, most importantly, her insults were purely based on her wild assumption that her perfume makes puts her on a pedestal overlooking the poor.

As for the DH fiasco, I didn't take offense at first. I am a fan of the show and I know what kind of humor they offer. I wasn't surprised that Susan Mayer said those words because I know for a fact that she is the naive woman in the show (of course we need to remind ourselves profusely that we should attack the character, not the actress who's playing it).

But then, like what I wrote in my blog, the lack of concern is mainly because we don't belong to the same profession. But come to think of it, if say someone from Zimbabwe who doesnn't know much about the Philippines, watches that clip he/she would be like 'Huh? Why? What's wrong with Filipino doctors? Are they quack doctors?'

It does question the integrity of FIlipinos in the medical profession. Plus, google the meaning of racist, it does match. SO for me, it does touch a nerve.

BUT the reaction was really waaaayyyy to OA.