dreadedcandiru2 (dreadedcandiru2) wrote,

Wrong Genre Savvy: The Pattersons' hat

Of course, there's another reason that John and Elly make, at best, questionable parents. It's bad enough that the two of them are pessimistic, moody, short-tempered loners who don't get social cues and who also equate motive and effect were it not for their being confirmed in their baffling viewpoints by an external force: network television. As we know, John and Elly were members of the first generation in which the idiot lantern became a factor in daily lives. As we also know, they seem to members of a rather wide swath of humanity who don't really question what they see owing to the baffling and silly belief that using their brains is a terrible, cruel and arrogant way to repay a creator for just doing his or her job. Well, that and the naive belief that a nebulous THEY prevent television from lying to people. Given that John and Elly fail civics forever, we can well picture them as assuming that some mighty figure from on high (complete with halo) said unto the network brass "THOU SHALT NOT TELL FALSEHOODS OR IMPOSE CULTURAL BIASES!!! TELEVISION MUST BE NOTHING BUT THE ABSOLUTE TRUTH!!!!"

As I said before, the end result of this hand-wringing need to coddle someone whose opinion is as open to debate as anyone else's and dimwitted belief that whatever is on the box must be true or it wouldn't be allowed on is that the Pattersons and their fellow travelers look at the world through a 4 by 3 aspect ratio. Instead of seeing the people around them as they really are, a Foob will see them as the media archetype that most closely fits what they do and how they make them feel. Given that when we see Elly, we can almost hear the overwrought, Hammond organ-based soundtrack of a sixties soap opera, it's easy to see that without intending to or actually realizing it, Lynn has created a chilling social horror story about a family that fumbles the ball because they see themselves as real people forced to interact with sitcom mutants.
Tags: television ain't life

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