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Friends Case

Essay by   •  March 12, 2012  •  Essay  •  377 Words (2 Pages)  •  1,392 Views

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Controlling images of individual characters or groups that deal with gender and/or sexuality are in almost every type of media in society. The images can be about men or women depending on what type of media it is and where it's coming from. Television is a great source for how society sees and reacts to these controlling images. We see how these images function in the TV shows and how they justify subordination. According to the American sitcom Friends, that aired on NBC from 1994-2004, there is a great deal of evidence proving that the controlling images, especially those of popular individual characters, and the way they deal with sexuality has a major impact on society and how it functions.

Friends, was not only a popular TV sitcom, it was a major culture impact. For this assignment I viewed the Friends episode 7, season 4 because it shows a lot of controlling images of individual characters. Some of the ones that stood out to me the most were characters like Rachel Green, Monica's best friend from high school who loves fashion. She is portrayed as a beautiful "blonde" who only knows men and fashion. She was so beautiful people called her hairstyle, "The Rachel" and copied it all around the world. Of course, she was involved with Ross Geller who is her best friend Monica's brother. We as women create this image that our friends with older brothers are "hot" or attractive. Another individual that stood out to me was Joey Tribbiani. His character was a young, handsome, simple-minded struggling actor who was also a womanizer. Joey always used the catchphrase, "How you doin'?". He was showing controlling images of how men should treat women by creating a popular slang pick-up line. According to Betsy Lucal's article "What it means to be Gendered Me", not only do people rely on social skills in attributing genders to others, but people also use their skills to present their own genders to them. Lucal believes that we see these controlling imagines through those characters because gender display refers to "conventionalized portrayals" of social correlates of gender. Whatever the reason, it is very evident that there is a huge impact on society and how they view gender through certain imagines.

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