Let me preface this by saying. Yes, I'm a geek and I love my geeky shows. But I am also prone to dropping in on Lifetime from time to time, likely because it offers me TV I can watch and avoid thinking during.
Still, Lifetime and I have been having a love/hate relationship recently. I hate them for making me love Dance Moms and I hate them for making me hate even the concept of Here Comes Honey Boo Boo (please, don't ask). So it was with a mixture of skepticism, intrigue and a groan that I decided to watch The Week The Women Went.
I got about halfway through the show last night. I was tired and hit a commercial break and so off to bed I toddled. I have thoughts and reactions so far, but I wanted to wait until I was done watching to see where I ended up. Sometimes my brain likes to toss things into background processing.
However, I had a feeling I was going to see some reaction today and I was right. ::grin::
There was this from The Jane Dough, and the NYT review. There were Facebook comments from my feminist friends (Hi Mac!) and the comments across the board seem to already be defensive or angry or dismissive of this show based on either the trailer, the voiceover work by Jeff Foxworthy, the fact that it's on Lifetime or the subject itself.
But let me share my thought here and, as someone who totally flipped out about something on Twitter last night based on little to no information and then had to revoke both my anger and my tweets*, offer a thought.
Instead of reading reviews based on reviews, or deciding based on comments, or even deciding based on the topic, watch some of the show and decide for yourself.
Even if you watch 10 minutes and decide you're not into it, take the time to watch it and then decide.
The folks in Yemasee actually did this experiment. They took this week out of their lives and it wasn't easy for them. Not the men or the women. The 30 minutes I watched let me amused, intrigued, a bit sad, overwhelming disgusted at one mom, proud of 3 dads, and in tears over a 14 year old girl taking over her mom's business so she can participate in the experiment.
I saw a 24 year old Marine who's never had to deal with kids take on his girlfriend's 3 kids for the week and have to deal with it. It wasn't hijinks. It wasn't funny. It was pretty real.
The dad in the trailer who says "I want your mommy too" to his wailing daughter is a working dad. Mom stays home. They have 2 kids. One with severe ADHD and the daughter you see who is a handful to say the least.
My point is, maybe this 5 week show is going to devolve into a parade of pratfalls and "yuk yuk" moments. But I'm not so sure about that. I think there may be some actual growth and learning in the middle of this.
Personally, it appeals to my analytical brain and I'm intrigued by the idea that an entire town participated in this. My inner sociologist is taking notes.
We're geeks, right? So, let me put it this way. It's an experiment. If you make a decision without observing it personally, do you know the outcome for certain?
Oh and, p.s., I think the 4 year old Elle may be the most awesome kid I've seen in a while.
*I went off on the KStew firing thing. Like, full-bore rawr. They fired her for having sex rawr! Then I was informed this decision was made back in April. Yeah. Eggface. ;-)
Have you seen the ads for ParaNorman? Allow me to help. ;-)
The official description: ParaNorman is the new 3D stop-motion comedy thriller from animation company LAIKA and reteams the company with Focus Features after the groundbreaking Academy Award-nominated Coraline.
My description?: Animated cute zombie awesome.
But it gets better. I get to give away the following ParaNorman goodies. ;-)
One (1) winner will receive:
·$25 Visa Gift Card for a night at the movies
Prizing values: $60
Prizing provided by Focus Features
How do you win? Easy. Tweet the following or share this post to your Facebook page. RT & follow @geekgirldiva by 5pm PST 8/17 to enter to win this #ParaNorman Prize Pack http://bit.ly/WWggd #weirdwinsggd There's lots of ways to follow and keep up with the movie goodness. They're also doing a lot of fun giveaways so make sure to check it out.
Red Dawn was one of those movies that defined a very specific time in my life. It was a summer that I'm never going to forget and Red Dawn is still a fave of mine.
Between all the Brat Packers and people like Powers Booth, Harry Dean Stanton and Barry Corbin, it's a time capsule of awesome.
So when I heard they were remaking it, I was...skeptical. Then when I heard about all of the issues, I was even more skeptical. But, after seeing this trailer, I think it might be a pretty good popcorn movie.
And, because it was neat to do a side by side comparison, here's the original Red Dawn theatrical trailer. (Am I the only one who saw stuff that's not in the final movie? ::grin::)
Sometime in the past year or so a thing happened that I've been waiting and hoping for: my little sister asked me about Battlestar Galactica. You see, she's not nerdy by nature. We watched some of the series when she visited a while ago, and she liked it but I don't think she was ready to commit to the show or the possible "g" word that accompanied it. I didn't pressure, just rambled on a bit about Starbuck and Apollo and the quest to find Earth. I think the episode of Portlandia that explored BSG obsession might have been the tipping point that pulled her back.
Soon, she asked about Doctor Who. Then during a visit, she watched Star Wars with me for the first time. We watched A New Hope and Empire Strikes Back. She approved. She saw The Avengers of her own accord. We lived in the same city briefly, and I showed her season one of Game of Thrones and she asked to borrow the book.
Then, a couple of days ago, do you know what I saw her like on Facebook? An article about Joss Whedon directing Avengers 2. I squealed. It's just so much fun to see her excited about stuff that's traditionally been in my world. And then, she followed it up with magic. She started watching Firefly and has been inhaling the series at a pace that would make any Browncoat proud. She's texting me stuff like "Kaylee is so adorable" and tweeting quotes. My geek heart is swelling with happiness. She figured out on her own that these shows and movies have potential - and I just helped her along with my enthusiasm (I have that in spades).
And I think that's the best way to foster curiosity for geeky interests. Be helpful.
Do suggest things you think someone would like based on what you know about their interests.
Do mention things you love and why you love them without pushing. We know how awesome Blade Runner is, but people who don't aren't sold by you bringing it up every time you talk with them. They'll eventually feel guilty because they haven't watched it yet and stop talking to you.
Do answer questions but don't be a know it all. Someone asking about the Death Star doesn't need to know about how the Battle of Yavin serves as a point in time in the Star Wars universe against which other events are measured. It's a fine line, and let me tell you - flooding people with too much information just because you know it can scare them off.
Let new geeks digest stuff. Don't make them feel bad because they didn't watch all of a series in a day. Don't barrage them with tons of questions about what they liked until they've had time to process it. In short, don't freak them the frak out with your intensity.
Realize that not everyone is going to love the same series or books as you and even if they do, they might not love them in the same way. When that happens with a new geek, don't immediately react with "Are you crazy? This/that is the best thing ever!" Create an environment where people can tell you what they like and dislike without judgment. It will just help you figure out new recommendations.
Show new geeks that it's an open club which welcomes new members and let them know that you don't have to know all the trivia or all the facets of everything or have been a fan for decades to be a geek. Tell them they don't need to do anything to "earn" the title other than being passionate, and if they run across anyone who tells them otherwise, they should run the other way.
Mostly: don't be condescending.
I came to a couple of my greatest geek loves late in the game. I didn't see Star Wars for the first time until it was re-released in the theaters. I was around 16. And yeah, that means I call it Episode IV: A New Hope and that I've seen the special editions more than I've seen the original versions. Some folks tease me about that. Now? I can roll with it (it still occasionally annoys me). However, if I would have heard those remarks in a condescending tone while I was new to the movies? I would have walked away, too worried about being judged and not fitting in.
Lord of the Rings is another example. I didn't pick up the books until I saw Fellowship at the theater. There was no one around to really guide me along the path. I mean, I saw that trilogy and Star Wars with friends who liked the universes but not so much that any of them sat me down to tell me about The Hobbit or Silmarillion or how I needed to see the original trilogy as it was first shown - so I stumbled along. It was okay, but boy, if I would have had Twitter during that time... Seeing people share their excitement about stuff like Doctor Who and comics opened so many corners of geekdom to me - all because people followed the general guidelines above. I try to pay it forward as much as I can, and so should you.
Feel free to share more helpful tips on how to properly care for new geeks in the comments!