Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Skins: a sad portrayal of teenage life in america

So I, like many others, tuned into to the premier of the MTV show Skins. It was originally a british show. The british version has nothing but great reviews. It seems that the U.S. version has a lot to live up to. So nothing about the previews inticed me to watch this show on an intellectual, or entertainment level. I was actually pretty digusted by the previews. I tuned in for the train wreck factor of the show. It caught my attention and I thought I might as well give it a shot before I pass any judgment. Because I watch a lot of shows for this exact train wreck factor i.e. the Bad Girl's Club, The Jersey Shore, any of the Real Housewives.
I tuned in watched and got what I basicly expected. The first episode was about the ring leader of the fight the power,we hate adult authority, edgy, rebelious sex having, drug doing teen group, Tony. who was on a mission to get his friend, Stanley, to lose his V card. So he asks his girlfriend, which every time Tony and her greet eachother it's with a long awkward tongued down kiss that everyone stares at in a really weird way, who asks another girl if she'd do it with him. This other girl agrees as long as they supply her with really great drugs. On top of being the public school play boy Tony also sings in the all female choir at an all girls private school. The girls there are so "in love," with him that one of the girls invites him to her party. Where he and all his friends trash her parents house. Well, Stanley goes and gets some marijuana from some drug dealer and gets a lot of it to sell. Well, he doesn't pay the drug dealer and promises  to have the money after he's sold the weed. At this party, everyone is getting ripped and Stanley is getting ready to get it in with this druggie chick. That's when she passes out after taking a ton of pills or something. All the kids start to panic and steal a car to drop her off at a hospital. then she wakes up in the car and they all have a laugh and watch her pee and then crash the stolen car into some water where they all get out of the car ok and laugh until they realize the weed is gone down with the car. The end to episode one. They also set up a few story lines for the gay cheerleader, and Stanley who is secretly in love with Tony's girlfriend, and the weird kid who is in love with a teacher.
I've decided to not go the "oh it's so bad and provocative, cover your children's eyes blah blah blah..." route. Instead I decided to go with the could it be any worse? route. 
Nothing about the first episode is realistic. But, according to an exclusive interview with Skins' creator Bryan Elsley he wants it to be a show from a teenagers perspective. Stating,
 "Skins is a very simple and in fact rather old fashioned television series. It's about the lives and loves of teenagers, how they get through high school, how they deal with their friends, and also how they circumnavigate some of the complications of sex, relationships, educations, parents, drugs and alcohol. The show is written from the perspective of teenagers, reflects their world view, and this has caused a degree of controversy both in the UK and the USA. "
I am only 23 and not that far from being a teenager to know that no one's life is this way. No one I know ever gave a crap about his best friend's virginity. Let alone paying some girl with drugs to take it. When I was in highschool the only virginity any one was worried about was their own. Having a virgin friend never cramped anyone's style. Never once did I look over at my friend in biology and say "really? you're still a virgin? Ugh I'm gonna have to fix that for you." Or look at a guy and go "eewww you hang out with virgins."
Any boy that is in an all girls chior at an all girls school would be specualted not as a player or lady's man, but as a blatant homo. Gay! There would be no doubt in any of our minds that he was the guy who loved show tunes, and capri pants for men.
The kids that sold weed at my school grew the weed. they didn't go to a brothel/ drug house to get their weed. No they grew it in their dressers, or under their beds. That was it. They didn't go take out some $800 weed loan with a drug lord.
These kids acted more like 30 year old drug/sex addicts instead of highschool students.
So my problem with the show on top of bad acting, and the demeaning behavior that the characters portray as the american youth, is the fact that the creator is selling this like these are the way teens act today. I personally am insulted because if this is the way he thinks that today's youth acts then he has greatly underestimated them. They don't sit around the cafeteria table talking about sex, and drugs, and sex, and more drugs, and having sex while doing drugs. While those things do come up and are talked about they never ruled our lives. It went more like this copying algebra homework, sex (some get a little embarressed because let's face it we were insecure teenagers), what we're doing this weekend, our parents just don't understand, football games, getting stoned, getting drunk, talking shit on another group of people who may or may not be more popular than you blah, blah, blah... and that's just petty talk. It actually does get deeper than that like politics, and family, and college, and goals, and dreams.
So this is my rant. This show may or may not get better. i doubt it will. I just watched the second episode and was shocked to find out it does get worse. well, i'll blog on that another day. good night all!

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