I am going to bring together two things that have been talked about a little recently. One involves "gLee". (Did you know the first gLee soundtrack is out soon? Did you know I may get tired of typing it gLee?) Now people always say that muscial TV shows don't work, pointing to "Cop Rock" and "Viva Luaghlin". I actually think "Cop Rock" wasn't that bad (can't say the same for "Viva Laughlin", even having Wolverine there didn't help). But clearly "Cop Rock" didn't find the right audience and got pulled early. Of course, there was this little show called "Fame" that had singing and was also had other things that people say don't work (movie spinoff, diverse cast, high schoolers that actually graduated) and it managed to survive pretty well.
(Did I mention that the gLee soundtrack is coming?)
With the apparent weak opening of "Amelia" the latest discussion is whether or no women can open movies and if it's that women won't watch movies about women that aren't fun group movies. I think honestly when I can watch movies on my phone, getting me to a theater has to offer me an experience that justifies my needing to be in a special place, at a special time, for a "special" amount of money, with only "special" snacks and surrounded by people who might cough or whisper about where they saw that guy before*. It has to be something that I think the movie screen will make better than watching on my couch. That's why I think visually interesting movies are doing well. Or movies where you can gather all your friends for dinner and a movie (because my couch is only so big.)
So, in the Post article about the end of movies with strong women, I think it totally ignores the possibility that people didn't want to see "Amelia" because it's possibly boring, or a movie where you know the main character dies in the end and instead said, oh, it must be because it's about a woman. (I am not unbiased on the subject of Amelia Earhart, but still.)
I think the important thing is this quote from Dergarabedian "Ultimately, everything comes down to the movie. If the movie's good, it can cross over all kinds of lines and break all sorts of rules."
And that's really the end result, people see movies that intrigue them. People watch TV shows that intrigue them. I ignored "Buffy" because vampires creep me out. (And it was on opposite "Ally McBeal".) But I heard and read enough things that made it sounds like something I might like until I finally checked it out. And loved it.
I love "gLee". (Did I tell you the sound track is out soon?) I love it despite it's faults. I love the singing and the dancing and I love the little moments they get right, the little bits in the midst of the crazy.
Now, I agree with the point by March Hirsch over at Monkey See that more live singing, or less produced stuff would make it even better. And yes, the kids sitting around singing was better than the crazy over produced version of "No Air". ("No Air" was still fun, but let's face it, it was clear we had crossed over into a music video with not even the tiniest bit of reality left.)
I also think a great point is made by there, that yes, we know it's a TV show, but there is a point where all the things that remind you this is just TV add up to too much and it starts to be less fun. (My tolerance level is usually raised when people sing for me. The gLee sondtrack is coming, had you heard?)
So in the end, I think the point is people watch stuff not because it's "good" or "about a strong woman" but becuase they think they will enjoy it. And while everyone's standard for that is different (and certainly about a strong woman might well be your benchmark) people watch stuff they wouldn't necessarily choose in a survey when it looks good enough to get over their other issues with people singing, or period pieces, or biographies or blood and gore or whatever their normal not for me's are.
Hey, had you heard about the gLee soundtrack? Since the Monkey See Article had the jam session, I will leave you with this. (Yes, it also looks like a video, but it;s so great, that I don't care.)
*It was George Clooney! And no this wasn't young people being disruptive, they were senior citizens.