When I read over at Blood Onion that Scoldy doesn’t love Raymond, I felt a small thrill. Is it wrong that I get excited when I find other people who hate that show as much as I do? Every single character on that show is grating; Raymond, the wife, the mother in law, the brother, even the kids. Any time I have been force fed an episode of Raymond (usually at my parents’ house), I ended up wanting to bitchslap every person on the show. With the wife, I think it’s more my reaction to the way she puts up with Raymond’s absolute thoughtlessness than anything else.
Or maybe it’s just this weird thing I have against sitcom wives. I can’t think of one – save for the sainted Mrs. Cleaver – whose character I have any fondness for. My hatred seems more prevelant with cartoon wives, but that may be attributed to the fact that in a cartoon, the situations and/or characters can be more outrageous and less based in reality.
Take Peggy Hill , for instance. She infuriates me. She’s bossy, self-centered, passive-aggressive, bitchy, ungrateful, sanctimonious, righteous and a martyr. If I were Hank, I would have slammed her head against a propane tank ages ago.
Another one I have no use for is Lois Griffin. Any woman that puts up with the shit Peter has dumped on her deserves what she gets, but she isn’t getting any sympathy from me. Yes, I know. It’s a cartoon. It’s fake. Still, I can’t help but feel frustrated with her sometimes. Plus, she’s a skanky whore. Not that there’s anything wrong with that.
Let’s keep rolling here. Marge Simpson. Another one who puts up with too much. At least Homer can be loving and sincere, where Peter Griffin is just an ass all the time. Marge also goes to the Peggy Hill school of obnoxious behavior. Another righteous martyr who thinks her way is the only way.
What about some real tv wives (as opposed to cartoons)? I don’t watch any current sitcoms, but I can tell you that Edith Bunker used to get under my skin. She always seemed like she was walking on eggshells with Archie. like she was afraid to do something wrong because he would end up belting her one. Can’t you see that? Archie comes home from work and some neighbor is sitting in his chair and dinner isn’t ready so he goes in the kitchen and asks Edith what the hell is going on and when she doesn’t answer fast enough, he calls her an idiot and then throws her against the wall. He leaves the room and the camera cuts to Edith, crumpled up in a ball on the floor, tears streaming down her face, and she says “he wouldn’t hit me if he didn’t care.” That’s why I hated that show. It wasn’t just Archie’s bigotry or Sally Struthers’s hippie character. I hated that I saw Edith as a deeply unhappy woman with self esteem issues. Wasn’t the show supposed to be funny? It always left me feeling like I was missing the joke.
You know who I miss? Roseanne. Sure, she was foul-mouthed and trashy. But there was a woman who stood up for herself, who didn’t put up with any shit from her kids or husband and who tried to do the right thing most of the time.
The best thing about Roseanne was that the show was consistently funny, even when they took on serious issues. All the characters had personalities that I could either relate to or sympathize with, unlike the sitcoms of today, where everyone is a two dimensional cliche.
Oh, hell if I know. I don’t even watch sitcoms anymore (save for the aforementioned cartoons). I gave up on basic tv ages ago. I now watch a steady diet of the History Channel, Discovery Channel, TLC and HGTV. Give me a few hours of survival, lawn care and Hitler and I’m much happier than if I spent my limited television time yelling at some cartoon wife that she needs therapy.