I have been taking a bit of a brain break from Postmodern Sitcom to reflect and decide the direction in which I want to take the podcast. Though I’ve focused on 80s sitcoms, because that’s what I know, I still think that all of the intergenerational discussions are valid. I want to help different generations understand each other, and I believe that I have the skills to tell the stories that, I hope, make a difference.
In reviewing some of my digital endeavors in the last year or two, I ran across this interview with my mom, Greta. The discussion reflects the realities of many people in her generation. I’m hopeful this dialogue will generate more conversations to help bridge generational gaps.
In this episode, Postmodern Sitcom looks at generations and the arts, especially how 80s TV shows exposed opera to Generation X. An interview with Metropolitan Opera Tenor Robert McPherson discusses how mainstream reality competition shows cloud the genre. Finally, we discuss how to keep the arts alive by encouraging audiences to experience live performances.
I disagree with a recent NBC News article calling out the “political cynicism” of Generation X. While my generation may not have a viable candidate in the 2020 election, Gen X’ers are not disconnected from politics.
Do you want to know why there aren’t more Generation X’ers vying for candidacy? It’s not because of political disconnection. Generation X is running the show. Further, Generation X is asking the questions. Out of the 19 Democratic debate moderators between June and November 2019, 13 are Generation X. (The other moderators thus far consist of five Boomers and one Millennial.)
The article quotes author Paul Taylor as saying, “The Xers have never been a politically or culturally pre-eminent generation.” This is particularly challenging for me to accept given that Paul Taylor is 70-years-old. (I daresay, “Ok, Boomer?”) Taylor’s criteria for Generation X caring more about politics is, “there’s nobody in the White House in your generation yet, and there aren’t many in other elected offices either.” Generation X comprises the brains behind the brawn.
True to form, Generation X isn’t disconnected from politics. We are the proverbial cog ninjas turning the wheel.
Maybe it’s easier to dismiss Generation X’ers as the perpetual slackers, we’re used to that. However, one must look at the larger political picture and see the generation as very much engaged. Just because we aren’t at the lecturn doesn’t mean we aren’t influential, we’re just less overt.
I’m taking a break from Postmodern Sitcom until December 10 to present this project at Gonzaga and (fingers crossed) get my master’s degree for all of it! In the meantime, here’s a little explainer of how this portion of the podcasts shook out, and a sneak peek of what’s to come!
Postmodern Sitcom will continue, and I’ve already got some good stuff in the works.
This episode of Postmodern Sitcom talks about stereotypes around social class on TV shows in the 1980s and how the content affects Generation X’s opinions today. Social class on TV shows is prevalent regardless of era. That isn’t necessarily a good thing when the content leads to unrealistic perceptions of reality. My guest and I watch Silver Spoons and then talk about social class on TV and in society. Also in this “very special episode,” we talk about the worst way to decline being offered drugs at a party.
This episode of Postmodern Sitcom talks about stereotypes around ability in 1980s television sitcoms and how that content affects Generation X’s opinions today. Ability shows up more often than in television of the 1980s. However, it is still not enough. I share some data about ability and disability on current television shows, then my guest and I watch 80s hit show Facts of Life and talk about ways ability is portrayed. Of course, we get into Blair’s cousin Geri and her cerebral palsy. We also discuss other areas of ability and stereotypes that are not so obvious in 1980s television.
I was feeling especially nostalgic today and thought about this story I did last year about my obsession with arcade game consoles. Whatever, either way, here’s the time I dragged my now husband to the Tacoma Arcade Expo. It rocked. One day I will own a full-size upright Moon Patrol arcade game console.
New, full episodes come out every Tuesday, but that doesn’t mean that bonus stuff can’t come out in between! Don’t forget to subscribe to Postmodern Sitcom on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher and wherever you get your podcasts. Also, be sure to check out the Postmodern Sitcom Facebook page and join in the conversation!
This episode of Postmodern Sitcom talks about sexuality stereotypes in 1980s television and how stereotypes affect Generation X’s opinions today. My guest, Ksenia, and I talk about sexuality by watching the 1980s television sitcom The Golden Girls. We have some real conversations about sexuality in situations women still face and how today’s younger generations address them. This isn’t a “bash men fest.” This is about how I, a Gen X’er, am still learning how to speak up when something doesn’t sit well or feel right. In this post “Me Too” reality, Ksenia helps me understand that it is increasingly more acceptable that women are standing their ground. Today’s women are more than 1980s television stereotypes.
I’m torn about this week’s latest political scandal involving California House Democrat Katie Hill. According to this CNN article, Rep. Hill and her husband engaged in a relationship with one of Hill’s campaign staffers. Then, without Hill’s consent, incriminating photos surfaced on a conservative blog. While Hill has addressed the inappropriate nature of engaging in a relationship “with a subordinate,” the House Committee on Ethics has launched an investigation.
I appreciate how Hill admitted to and took responsibility for, the improper relationship that transpired prior to her time in Congress. Even though the photos were leaked, however, I suspect they’ll become incriminating evidence in the official inquiry. There is some equality here when compared to the situation surrounding Al Franken’s incriminating photos and his subsequent forced Senatorial resignation.
My question is: how are either of the inappropriate situations faced by Hill and Franken any worse than a United States presidential candidate caught on tape boasting about grabbing women? That individual went on to win an election. That individual continues to act inappropriately without consequences. I’m not a fan of selective double-standards.
Next week’s episode of Postmodern Sitcom addresses the topic of sexuality. My guest, Ksenia, and I discuss how 80s TV content affected behaviors of Generation X. We talk about how it is still uncomfortable for many Gen X women to speak up about inappropriate behavior. Ksenia speaks for many Millennials when she addresses how younger generations are less willing to overlook harassment. I look forward to the conversation and am hopeful I will better understand how to step out of silence.