Ladies, We Can Stop Making TV Shows Now Because the Co-Creator of ‘Two and a Half Men’ Says So
You're all familiar with 'Two and a Half Men,' the head-scratchingly popular show that used to star Charlie Sheen, abuser of women, and now stars Ashton Kutcher, abuser of fame. The show's co-creator, Lee Aronsohn, recently had some despicable things to say about female-centric television from his throne of male righteousness.
Speaking to The Hollywood Reporter, Aronsohn commented on the recent abundance of female-focused sitcoms, such as 'Two Broke Girls,' saying, "Enough, ladies. I get it. You have periods." Aronsohn tried to backtrack by praising Whitney Cummings and Tina Fey for tackling these topics on television, but added, "We’re approaching peak vagina on television, the point of labia saturation." He then dismissed his own judgment because "We do far too many fart jokes on 'Two and a Half Men.' I’m the last person to judge."
We'll forgive him; his show isn't very funny and his perception of women is incredibly slight, but his self-deprecation reeks of desperate back-pedaling. This is a man who runs a show dedicated to praising the idiocy of men in perpetual arrested development, with disposable incomes that allow them to treat their women as equally disposable -- women who, by the show's own measure, are largely gold-digging, psychotic, vapid representations of the female gender (the ones who are reasonable are often shown as incapable of fun or joy), whose existence is merely functional in the sense that it creates conflict and hardship for these men.
Aronsohn is currently trying to secure a tenth season for the show, and in a baffling move has chosen this time to speak out against (but also for?) women on television by declaring that there are simply too many shows for us and our period jokes. What should we make jokes about, Mr. Aronsohn? Should we joke about how slutty we are and how we can't step away from the bedroom long enough to get back in the kitchen?
If you're going to complain about women on television, at least have the nerve to pick on something relevant, like how unfunny 'Whitney' is, regardless of vaginal hubris. It's not that Whitney Cummings has a TV show in an era of "labia saturation," it's that her show isn't very funny - female issues or no.
Tina Fey, on the other hand, manages to make jokes about her period and still has a successful, hilarious show with a strong female protagonist at its heart. 'Two Broke Girls,' while flawed with some unfortunate racial stereotypes and an outdated laugh track, still manages to craft humor with its endearing 'Odd Couple' pairing of Kat Dennings and Beth Behrs, and their unrepentant, unabashed female-centric jokes, with support from its bevy of strong female writers, like Molly McAleer.
Is this too much? Are we at "peak vagina" right now? Should women who want to work in TV stop pursuing their creative dreams now, or should we just stop making jokes about our bodies to make the men more comfortable? Mr. Aronsohn, what should we be writing about? We can't make jokes about all those babes we took home from the bar last night or have a character with some cutesy, romanticized addiction to alcohol (you've got that market cornered), and we certainly can't flip the script and only keep men around as the source of conflict (the Lifetime network has that market cornered).
All that's left is ourselves, and since we clearly only exist as some distillation of commercial advertisements and magazines, we're all about periods, and ice cream, and our vagina feelings. We are what you have made us, Mr. Aronsohn, and if we want to crack jokes about PMS and cramps, you can't take that away from us too. We are given so little respectable material to claim as exclusively ours in media, and until men start lugging around a vagina of their own with all its vague, befuddling mysteries and inner-workings for them to make jokes about, then we're just going to keep making our lady jokes. Good day, sir.
I said good day.