Friday, May 30, 2008

SATC - Entertainment, Not Politics

"... we have come a long way. No question. Definitely. But it's not because of 'Sex and the City.' It's because of what real women have done in real lives, not on TV sets." Susie Bright

Just when my brain is about to explode from too much media coverage of the presidential campaign, along comes the movie version of Sex and the City.

What does it say about our values that Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama get a break from the spotlight while the media engage in a virtual masturbatory orgy of psychobabble about the global impact of a fictional group of horny, romantic, often silly women?

Enough! Sex and the City is a movie, not a movement. The real, political movement already happened -- back in the 60's and 70's. I know. I was there. It was called Women's Liberation. Equal Rights. The Sexual Revolution.

Those hard won battles weren't fueled by a TV show or a movie any more than the SATC movie or TV show launched any kind of new cultural breakthroughs. So today's 20-somethings seem obsessed about sex, why does that have so many writers' panties in a twist?

Every generation of young people thinks it invented sex. Our great grandparents were having group sex in bathtubs full of gin, for cryin' out loud. It was the Baby Boomer generation --Make Love, Not War-- that opened a truly new and open discussion.

We Boomers can claim, legitimately, that ours is the generation who brought sex, drugs and rock 'n roll out of the closet and into the forefront of our culture.

We took away the shame, the blame, the insulting game whose rules told us that healthy sexual appetites are for men only. That sexual objectification and worse, abuse, is tolerable. That women don't have the right to control our own bodies.

That's the bottom line. Now, we can not only control them, we can enjoy them. Do what we want with them. Discuss them. Trust me, we dished down-and-dirty then, and we still do.

Most of us weren't strutting the streets of Manhattan in $800 shoes and $1500 dresses. We wore jeans and flip flops. (Oh, you thought you invented those too? Jeez). But we had just as much sex just as casually and reviewed just as many details with our BFF's as do fictional Carrie and crew.

By the way, I'm a devoted SATC fan. Especially because the openness, dreams and vulnerability portrayed resonate with me and my generation of sexually active women from 30-to-50-something. And, one hopes, beyond.

SATC was a hot, sexy TV show with a lot of snappy dialogue, sex, flash, dazzle, and women dropping the F-bomb as casually as they dropped their panties. Yes, they all wanted to be married or at least cared for, but guess what ... so do we all. We don't need someone with a PhD in relationship therapy to tell us the obvious.

I've been eagerly waiting for the movie, but I'm planning to wait just a little longer til the crowds of over-dressed, overly self-conscious and pretentious SATC wannabes are gone. Then, my girlfriends and I will go. And laugh and cry and maybe get annoyed (I already hate Carrie's wedding dress) at the excess.

But in the end, it's just entertainment. Not politics. Which, frankly, gets more fantastical every day.

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