This ties in with an earlier conversation I was having, as well as a post by ladyjillian
; also, it is something that has been preying on my mind, and it concerns MTV.
No, not the question why a tv station the program of which consists mostly of talk shows, reality tv and adverts for mobile phone ringtones is called "music television", though that is something I've also asked myself a few times.
This time, though, it's a specific show I mean, MTV's "Made
, which I don't so much watch as occasionally fall into when I'd much rather be asleep, or am taking a break and knitting.
For those who've never seen this show before, a short recap: teenagers who want to achieve something special or change their lives in some way write in to MTV, who then supply a coach or two, facilities etc, while following the teenager around with a camera. The special acievement can range from "I want to be a coast guard", "I want to become a model" to "I want to become better at school".
So far, so good.
Now, the last two episodes of this that I've seen were upsetting and worrying me. In one of them, there was this rather tomboyish teen who loved her books (fantasy, mostly), was very much into sports, had her own katana, and looked slightly like Harry Potter with the glasses and the hair. Anyway, she wanted to be Helen in the school's theatre production of Shakespeare's Midsummer Night's Dream. So during this show, this geeky, yet confident and interesting teen learns to wear dresses and high heels and how to ask out boys, gets her face made up and her hairdo changed, in short, she is turned into a Woman. The acting classes she gets support this, since Helen has to be this very female, uh, female.
In the next episode, there's this guy, about the same age. He's not even geeky, just different - he likes to read poetry, is fencing, likes to wear highly colourful shoes and play RPGs. He actually described himself as a born-too-late romantic. His goal? To ask out a girl for the school dance. In order to achieve this, he gets turned into a run-of-the-mill, slightly macho, "cool", ideal college boy, in short, a Man.
And the only thing I can ask myself while I sit and watch this is: Why?