Over the years, in chats with people I know, I’ve pointed out more than a few TV shows where the leads fall in love and act on it while they’re still attached to other people, or they have obligations they’re sworn to uphold that prevent them from having a social relationship. I call it skanky, and someone usually tells me I’m a prude.
Which is odd, because as far as I’m concerned, if you want to openly have 16 lovers at a time, you go for it. Fine by me. It’s the deception I take issue with. In fact, sometimes these coupllings never actually get to the kissing stage – they keep it at the long, sad looks and the “everyone knows you’re meant to be together” stage. If I was a prude, the fact that they’re not having sex would make me feel better. It doesn’t.
Where do people get the idea that it’s okay to shop around for a better deal while you’re committed to a person? Or to look for a social relationship your duties preclude (as in doctor/patient, supervisor/subordinate, etc.)? I think the people I’ve known who dig this stuff would argue that as long as you weren’t looking for it – as long as you just stumbled across your true love without looking for it – it’s romantic and sweet.
I’m so not getting this. I know people who think a guy who’s got a girlfriend is fair game, so long as they’re not engaged. I know other people who – like many TV show producers – think it’s okay to pursue engaged people, because they’re not married yet. And I know people who think it’s okay to pursue married people, when you know that you are really the one for them, and that ho they’re married to is just an obstacle to true love.
That’s not romantic or sweet, it’s just self-centered. But TV producers agree with those who think this way.
What’s strange is that it’s okay to show people betraying spouses, obligations and ideals… but it’s not okay to show an “open marriage” in which the partners have decided mutually that they’ll both sleep with other people, but keep their emotional bonds strictly exclusive. Obviously, a TV show featuring people with an open marriage could show a lot more sex than one about people struggling to keep their vows while drooling after someone they’re not supposed to have. Clearly, the real draw is not the romance, or even the sexiness, but the actual lying itself. That has to be what turns on viewers and fails to enflame the “moral majority” types. Because the moral majority types would be there in a flash if as many shows featured open marriages as feature adultery.
I find lying and deception to degrade characters, not enhance them. Can anybody explain to me why TV producers have been known to call it “character building” to get into relationships issues like this one?