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White girls are broke like *this*...
January 11, 2012 5:13 PM   Subscribe

I walk up to "2 Broke Girls" co-creator Michael Patrick King, offer my hand and say, "Mr. King, I'm sorry things got so ugly there, but I wanted to say that it came from a place where a lot of us in the room like the parts of your show involving Kat and Beth, and want the rest of the show to live up to that." King, stone-faced, silently turns and walks off the stage.
posted by no regrets, coyote (118 comments total) 6 users marked this as a favorite

 
Another account of the press conference.
posted by Frayed Knot at 5:16 PM on January 11, 2012 [3 favorites]


Thanks Frayed Knot. The FPP link is more a blow-by-blow of the press conference, the AV Club link gives a bit more context.
posted by no regrets, coyote at 5:20 PM on January 11, 2012


I seriously want to cry that Kat Dennings finally gets on a much-talked-about TV show, and it's this.
posted by two or three cars parked under the stars at 5:25 PM on January 11, 2012 [18 favorites]


Holy shit, it costs $350,000 to open a cupcake shop?!
posted by BitterOldPunk at 5:28 PM on January 11, 2012 [2 favorites]


I have to say, that equal opportunity offender line seems to be the new "I'm not a racist, but..."
posted by mccarty.tim at 5:29 PM on January 11, 2012 [13 favorites]


it seems like the studios are banking on racism, sexism, and gay/transphobia - with this show and rob, and work it, and last man standing. it all makes me really sad.
posted by nadawi at 5:29 PM on January 11, 2012 [9 favorites]


This is why I don't watch network television.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 5:33 PM on January 11, 2012 [6 favorites]


Some more context here.
posted by docgonzo at 5:34 PM on January 11, 2012 [1 favorite]


This article really belongs on the reading comprehension portion of a PSAT test.
Read the passage above and then answer the following questions. Which option below best summarizes the events that transpired at the press conference:

A. Bad PR around a program that often derives humor from race and/or sex
B. A series of overreactions
C. A show was cancelled
Ⓓ. A & B but not C
E. None of the above
posted by 2bucksplus at 5:35 PM on January 11, 2012 [5 favorites]


From the AV Club link:

"King’s defense for much of this was that the show was “classy dirty.” He said that people instinctively lean away from jokes they find distasteful, but the show’s good ratings suggest that’s not happening. “Week after week, people are leaning in to 2 Broke Girls, so there's something there that they feel okay about,” he said."

You see? It's OK that we're racist, because all our viewers clearly like racism! Just look at the ratings!
posted by His thoughts were red thoughts at 5:35 PM on January 11, 2012 [4 favorites]


But mostly the problem is that the show is unfunny garbage. South Park has featured equally vivid racism, but the show can be at least twenty times funnier, and there's more of a sense that South Park actually is an equally opportunity offender, and not just the dumping ground for lazy stereotypes.
posted by Sticherbeast at 5:36 PM on January 11, 2012 [7 favorites]


[clip rant, insert short version]

Alan Sepinwall comes off like a self righteous, passive aggressive, politically correct little twat in this piece. I have no idea what he is like in real life.
posted by Xoebe at 5:36 PM on January 11, 2012 [3 favorites]


Holy shit, it costs $350,000 to open a cupcake shop?!

In Brooklyn? I can see that being about right in terms of at least opening it with a healthy capital cushion for unexpected expenses and in order to give the shop time to gain a customer base. (My brother has been dealing with getting a Tamale restaurant open in Blue Jay, California, and I can only imagine how much more expensive it would be to get a niche-restaurant going in New York.)
posted by Navelgazer at 5:36 PM on January 11, 2012


Sounds like there's a lot more broke than just 2 Girls.
posted by grounded at 5:37 PM on January 11, 2012


Holy shit, it costs $350,000 to open a cupcake shop?!

They don't bake themselves and get their precious little toppings on their own, you know.
posted by carter at 5:39 PM on January 11, 2012


Thanks for this! I couldn't believe how aggressively, intensely awful everything about 2 Broke Girls which does not directly involve the interplay between Kat and Beth's characters is and wondered if I was alone. But I'm not!

It's as if the writers did not trust the stars or the material and threw every terrible buried in the back of the closet idea they've ever had into the thing in the hope something would stick. The supporting cast are unbelievably racially based stereotypes. And worse than that they're not funny in the least. There is a horse! In their tiny backyard! In the city! (Ok, was a horse). I'm only half jokingly waiting for a cute pet monkey and an angel only Kat Dennings can see.

If you haven't seen the show take however bad you thing these things come across and triple it and you might get close to how soul numbing those bits of the show are.

It surprises me the vitriol Whitney gets. It isn't great. It isn't even good, really. But its badness is pedestrian and not the in-your-face crap we're talking about here. I gotta believe it's just that people like Kat Dennings and dislike Whitney Cummings.
posted by Justinian at 5:41 PM on January 11, 2012 [3 favorites]


i didn't mean to only harp on the negative up there. there are some good things happening in network tv sitcoms. for instance: Up All Night, Modern Family and TV’s Feminism for Men
posted by nadawi at 5:42 PM on January 11, 2012 [6 favorites]


Is this something I'd need to have a telev--- *punches self in face, dies*
posted by George_Spiggott at 5:45 PM on January 11, 2012 [42 favorites]


I'm so tired of scandals about racism, I'm getting to the point where I almost wish we lived in a world without racism.
posted by planet at 5:45 PM on January 11, 2012 [17 favorites]


They don't bake themselves and get their precious little toppings on their own, you know.

It would be great if the season finale featured one of the broke girls explaining this to the other, punctuated firmly by canned laughter followed by canned applause, but then the camera lingered on them, and there was strange Lynchian humming and rumbling as the camera then drifted into the kitchen, where, much to the audience's pique, cupcake batter was indeed baking itself, and cupcake toppings were indeed sprouting ex nihilo from the hot, lumpy surface of these self-baking cupcakes, and as the camera drew in closer, you could hear strange muffled whispers from within the baked goods.
posted by Sticherbeast at 5:46 PM on January 11, 2012 [60 favorites]


I'm not sure I'm understanding the issue.

/reads story
/gets that producers of bad show are racist.

If it were a good show, or a popular show, sure. But the fact that they take decent stuff like Community off the air and then put this... stuff in it's place means we already know they have no soul. Why is the racism bit a surprise?
posted by Blue_Villain at 5:48 PM on January 11, 2012 [5 favorites]


Eh? It is a popular show.
posted by Justinian at 5:51 PM on January 11, 2012 [2 favorites]


What is broadcast on CBS on Monday nights is a flawed product, but the fact that some parts of Metafilter, the Onion's AV Club, and the dude who has shared my bed since 2006 want to make 2 Broke Girls work (mostly because the good parts could, in a fantasy land, work and work hard), makes me love the aforementioned parties.

(and love them HARD!)

Everything good about the leads of this show is ruined of you imagine them in a feature film in an oppressive Middle East country a decade from now...and that is all you need to know about the Sex in The City producer;

posted by MCMikeNamara at 5:51 PM on January 11, 2012 [1 favorite]


If it were a good show, or a popular show, sure. But the fact that they take decent stuff like Community off the air and then put this... stuff in it's place means we already know they have no soul. Why is the racism bit a surprise?

It's not a surprise. It's so common that it has become banal and perhaps even expected. But just because it is the status quo doesn't mean it shouldn't be discussed. Other it will always remain the status quo.
posted by His thoughts were red thoughts at 5:52 PM on January 11, 2012 [1 favorite]


That's a good idea, Sticherbeast, but I think the pitch needs to be a little snappier.
posted by carter at 5:52 PM on January 11, 2012


No, there are definitely good things happening in Network TV, but there's been a kind of dearth of good news for a while now. People are waiting for Community to hopefully return (and hoping that Sony will deal a way for it to get a fourth season so they can make their return on investment in syndication.) 30 Rock's hiatus and hot-and-cold streaks over the past several seasons mean a bit of leeriness for its return tomorrow. the Carrell-free Office experiment is... not really generating a lot of chatter one way or the other. Basically, the only thing to get excited about (for my highly specific demo of TV viewers) is that Archer returns next week.

As for How I Met Your Mother, well, I'm loving this season. It's still funny, sure, but the show's premise in the first season (A bunch of twenty-somethings fumble their way into adulthood while over-reacting to the crises of adult responsibilities) has morphed into something else, a sort of desperation amongst the cast members that their still waiting outside the door of adulthood and the bouncer hasn't let them in yet and they don't know why. They've been willing to go sad and devastating, and it's worked to the show's benefit, I think. Especially as presumably the title question gets answered at the end of this season (god it fucking better.)
posted by Navelgazer at 5:52 PM on January 11, 2012 [5 favorites]


God that AV Club article was just horrible, but there was one line that pretty much nailed the whole situation for me

"The kinds of people who care about this shit are a decided minority
posted by timsteil at 5:54 PM on January 11, 2012 [2 favorites]


I've never seen the show, but isn't it possible that whatever you don't like is there for the same reason whatever you don't like was in All in the Family?
posted by 0xdeadc0de at 5:56 PM on January 11, 2012


No.
posted by Justinian at 5:57 PM on January 11, 2012 [17 favorites]


Again, it's only being watched because they've taken all of the other good shows off the air.

People don't watch it because it's a good show, they watch it because there's nothing else on.

This does not mean it's popular, just that it's what's on when people want to watch tv.
posted by Blue_Villain at 5:57 PM on January 11, 2012 [4 favorites]


"I find it comic to take everybody down, which is what we are doing."

OR we could try to stretch ourselves by finding new ways of being comic without taking anyone down. Or not I guess.
posted by bleep at 5:57 PM on January 11, 2012 [1 favorite]


Okay, I'm trying to force my way through the Pilot now. I'm aware that Pilots are as a rule going to be clunky, but this is pretty atrocious.
posted by Navelgazer at 5:59 PM on January 11, 2012


If this is the show I'm thinking of, I think I made it through 5 minutes of this before turning it off. I'll seriously watch almost anything -- I've even watched entire infomercials before, for things I have no interest in buying. But this was really, really horrible.
posted by Deathalicious at 6:02 PM on January 11, 2012 [1 favorite]


Again, it's only being watched because they've taken all of the other good shows off the air.

If people watched the good shows, they would still be on the air. I'm not sure how you would explain the order-of-magnitude ratings difference between Two and a Half Men and Parks and Rec, but I don't think it's too much of a stretch to say that most people like mindless laughs over clever plotlines.
posted by no regrets, coyote at 6:03 PM on January 11, 2012 [2 favorites]


I wish, Navelgazer. The producers still haven't even committed to ending the show after next season. I really think we're not going to find out until the series finale.

That said, I still enjoy the show a lot, probably more than a lot of other fans. I think they've been balancing the humor and pathos pretty well. Not as well as, say, Parks and Rec, but that's asking for a lot. HIMYM used to be in my top 2 or 3 sitcoms, but it's definitely slipped. Still top 5 though, for me.
posted by kmz at 6:03 PM on January 11, 2012


I'm aware that Pilots are as a rule going to be clunky, but this is pretty atrocious.

But, but, but... Kat Dennings cleavage!
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 6:04 PM on January 11, 2012 [2 favorites]


Again, it's only being watched because they've taken all of the other good shows off the air.

You're just pulling this out of thin air. There are many, many shows which get no audience. This show isn't one of those; there is a real audience for it.
posted by Justinian at 6:05 PM on January 11, 2012


Amazing. He fit some anti-Irish prejudice into his panel discussion. He truly is an equal opportunity offender! What next -- twins?
posted by Bunny Ultramod at 6:05 PM on January 11, 2012 [1 favorite]


EmpressCallipygos: "This is why I don't watch network television."

That's a shame. There are still plenty of worthy/entertaining shows out there that show up on network TV. It just so happens that this one is really bad.

Although this is why I love Hulu/Netflix. Both network and non-premium cable shows, available when I want to watch them, with slightly fewer commercials.
posted by Deathalicious at 6:05 PM on January 11, 2012


I like the show.
posted by Raymond Marble at 6:05 PM on January 11, 2012


it's only being watched because they've taken all of the other good shows off the air.
Yeah, shame about Man Up. I'm enjoying 2 Broke Girls and on the bright side, although The Real World: San Diego has ended, Jersey Shore season 5 has started.
posted by unliteral at 6:07 PM on January 11, 2012 [1 favorite]


God that AV Club article was just horrible, but there was one line that pretty much nailed the whole situation for me

"The kinds of people who care about this shit are a decided minority


Not just displaying, but openly flaunting your privilege. Nice.
posted by kmz at 6:08 PM on January 11, 2012 [7 favorites]


Hey, speaking of Parks & Rec, I've been wanting to get into it and haven't yet. I hear the first season is really touch and go, so where would y'all suggest I start?
posted by Navelgazer at 6:09 PM on January 11, 2012


I have no idea what he is like in real life.

I do. None of those things, for what it's worth to you.

The weird thing about this is that while I'm not at press tour this time around, I was there in the summer the first time they paneled this show, and they got the same question based on the pilot. So King cannot possibly have really been surprised -- either he or Whitney Cummings (I don't remember which; they were the EPs who were there) made the argument back then that it was equal opportunity in the sense that making fun of hipsters is the same as making fun of Asians, which the critics there weren't really buying even then. This can't have been a surprise to him at all.

He also can't really be surprised that it kind of went off the rails when he said the thing to the reporter about being Irish and commented on his "sexual problems." In all the panels I've been to -- including ones for shows critics really hated (see: The Playboy Club -- I've never seen anything quite like that.
posted by Linda_Holmes at 6:11 PM on January 11, 2012 [11 favorites]


Matthew Moy's "Han Lee" character makes me cringe. Han Lee is so transparently a shoddy Asian stereotype with his Chinese name and fake Japanese accent. He's not based on one person, he's based on the writers' prejudices about a whole continent. And then they insult him and treat him as a stooge. Contrast with Ken Jeong's complicated and awesome character in Community.
posted by w0mbat at 6:13 PM on January 11, 2012 [26 favorites]


Navelgazer

I would say start from the beginning. The first season is a little hit or miss but it's worth watching. However, if you want to get straight to the greatness, you could skip to the second season and not be lost or anything.
posted by saul wright at 6:16 PM on January 11, 2012


Hey, speaking of Parks & Rec, I've been wanting to get into it and haven't yet. I hear the first season is really touch and go, so where would y'all suggest I start?

Season Two. I didn't like Season One, but Season Two onwards is like a great galleon of awesome plowing through an ocean of cool.
posted by Sticherbeast at 6:17 PM on January 11, 2012 [1 favorite]


I watched the first few episodes but the Matthew Moy character is so single-dimensional and so over-the-top stereotypical that the show lost me.
posted by gen at 6:18 PM on January 11, 2012


I don't even know if I could make it through an entire episode of that drivel if Kat Dennings promised to wildly make out with me immediately afterwards.
posted by elizardbits at 6:22 PM on January 11, 2012 [4 favorites]


Honestly, I'd probably do it for a hug.
posted by no regrets, coyote at 6:26 PM on January 11, 2012


That the guy responsible for Sex and the City 2 is kind of a jerk should not come as a surprise to anyone.
posted by lrobertjones at 6:27 PM on January 11, 2012 [3 favorites]


There are bits of this show that speak to "the current situation of the republic" in ways that no other show on network TV even bothers to try. But they are so few and far between that....

I tried to make a valid point but then the racist secondary characters spoke loudly in my head. "All In The Family" this is not. Imagine that the short lived "Gloria" spin off but it was successful. Then imagine that a mangy dog (who had been abandoned at the California vet clinic where Meathead abananoned Gloria and baby Joey) got a spinoff where said canine had been adopted by the failed "Florence from The Jefferson's" spinoff. And then Charlie Chan and Amos AND Andy had a baby who procreated with another mangy dog.

That's the dog who writes the diner scenes of 2 Broke Girls.
posted by MCMikeNamara at 6:30 PM on January 11, 2012 [5 favorites]


Metafilter: strange muffled whispers from within.

I wanted to start watching this, maybe, but now I don't think so.
posted by the man of twists and turns at 6:49 PM on January 11, 2012


I could take a spelunking team...

Cut it out.
posted by ODiV at 6:55 PM on January 11, 2012 [4 favorites]


"I will call you in five years, and you will have accrued enough time to figure out if these characters became fully fledged-out."

If this show lasts five years, CBS won't last six.
posted by Sys Rq at 6:55 PM on January 11, 2012


Okay, wow. I just watched the first season two episode of Parks & Rec. The difference in quality between that and what I was trying to slog through earlier was alarming.

Now, it might not be fair to compare a pilot to a season 2 episode, or even to compare a 3-Camera sit-com to a single-camera sitcom, or hell, to compare an NBC sitcom to a CBS one (though as I've said I'm a big fan of HIMYM.) But holy shit those were apples and oranges.

Look at how 2 Broke Girls introduces it's protagonist: she tells a line cook to stop looking at her cleavage (which the show then assures the audience is staring at, if we weren't already) and then has her cut down two one-dimensional, well, we'll call them hipsters because they're dressed like that and referred to as such, though the jokes at their expense are shit that Bruce Vilanche would have abandoned five years ago. And this is by way of barely polishing the turd of exposition which the scene is clearly supposed to be used for. We are told that:

1. She's not a hipster, no sir. Just because the show is set in Brooklyn because that's trendy, nope, she's not one of them (her denial there would actually be highly identifying in a show which knew what it was writing about, but this isn't it.)
2. Unself-conscious daddy issues from being raised in a single-family household, which she will share with strangers.
3. Ooh, she's sassy. She'll snap right in your face, don't even doubt it.

In comparison, the cold open of "Pawnee Zoo" consists mostly of Ron Swanson coming in to Leslie's office, saying "here's the situation," and Leslie then taking off from there to regale the office with an awkward-but-not-too-awkward and clearly unexpected rendition of a verse from "Parents Just Don't Understand."

So much more depth understood, so much little actually told. She's so happy with herself to have this half-performance ready to go. Her coworkers are surprised enough by it that they encourage her, giving her a little more enthusiasm through the high-wire act of it all. She's firmly square, but enjoys playing with (what is to her) her wild side. Even knowing almost nothing about the show or character before that, it was a perfect introduction to someone who I wouldn't have hung out with much in life, but damn, she seems fun and interesting here.

To say nothing of the way yhr supporting cast is handled. Ron Swanson ends the cold open by calmly and resignedly telling her that "the situation" is that someone set himself on fire in one of the parks. Perfect. Got enough knowledge of him for now. He is, at least in this episode, the straight-man center of sanity. Aziz Ansari's assistant (didn't catch the name) is also a revelation. Tons of jokes at his expense, none of them coming from any stereotypes. Aubrey Plaza explaining the situation with her "gay but straight for me but totally gay for Ben and I hate Ben" boyfriend in that Tina Marjorino deadpan was perfect, and sold me on that character as well. Show, don't tell, people!

Contrast: "I am eastern European and stare at your breasts, yes?" or "Oh yes I'm cool Mr. Smooth, at seventy-five-years-young" or "My new name BRYCE Lee! Much more American-like!" or "I'm showing up for my new waitressing job wearing Chanel! I know, right?! How out of touch am I!?" I trust that that final character gets depth, as she seems to be included in the title, but the others, particularly the elderly hep-cat, are presented strictly as props, and fuck that noise.
posted by Navelgazer at 7:12 PM on January 11, 2012 [16 favorites]


I hate everything associated with Chelsea Handler and Whitney Cummings.
posted by anniecat at 7:22 PM on January 11, 2012 [12 favorites]


I just watched an episode of the show for the first time. Dreadful in every way. Cringe inducing.

Except Kat Dennings. I like her.
posted by empath at 7:25 PM on January 11, 2012


I like it.
posted by signal at 7:29 PM on January 11, 2012


If people watched the good shows, they would still be on the air. I'm not sure how you would explain the order-of-magnitude ratings difference between Two and a Half Men and Parks and Rec, but I don't think it's too much of a stretch to say that most people like mindless laughs over clever plotlines.

Nielson ratings have little to do with what people are actually watching. Small sample size of folks who are late adopters of all the fantastic time-shifting devices one can plug into their TVs these days.
posted by Thoughtcrime at 7:32 PM on January 11, 2012 [4 favorites]


Nielson ratings have little to do with what people are actually watching. Small sample size of folks who are late adopters of all the fantastic time-shifting devices one can plug into their TVs these days.

DVR viewing is now tracked as well. It does not result in great but low-rated shows being massively more popular. Don't get me wrong -- I wish this were true, but I have seen literally no evidence that it's true except that people really, really can't believe that other people watch the things they can't stand.
posted by Linda_Holmes at 7:35 PM on January 11, 2012 [4 favorites]


How come I didn't know there was a show that makes fun of hipsers, how deck! I am totes there hit me up with the deets.
posted by Ad hominem at 7:40 PM on January 11, 2012


oh shit, I should have said "how rad" shouldn't I.
posted by Ad hominem at 7:41 PM on January 11, 2012


Ad Hominem, you've missed so much! The hipsters do things to copy Coldplay! It's so droll!
posted by Navelgazer at 7:43 PM on January 11, 2012 [1 favorite]


This show entertains me in the brainless way I need to be entertained every now and then. It's a show where I don't HAVE to pay attention like, say, Modern Family or some of the more intelligent comedies out there. Not everything has to be about creating an artistic cultural contribution.

Cultural jokes aside, I don't find the humor in this show to be that much different than what comes out on 2 1/2 Men so the issue of being dirty seems moot to me. It's been done already. It's just being done by women in the starring roles and in a more pronounced way. Who cares?

And in regards to the cultural jokes. Are the supporting characters that over the top in their characterizations? Don't you think it would be pretty easy to find people just like them in society? In that sense, why isn't it fair to use them as characters? In thinking about it, I'd have to say that of the five diner characters the two girls have been the most negatively portrayed. Kat's character has done drugs, stolen things, slept around. Beth's is/was superficial and bitchy. In contrast, aside from Jonathan Kite's Oleg being a tongue-in-cheek sexual harasser, Moy's character is an entrepreneur (so what if he's got an accent!) and Garrett Morris's Earl seems to be respected by both the girls and has "lived life." Do the passing jokes focused on stereotypes really overshadow their positives?

Alright enough debating about fictional people.
posted by thorny at 7:46 PM on January 11, 2012


I started watching episode 2 of 2 Broke Girls (the one where they get the horse). Within two minutes, one of the leads was explaining the premise of the show to viewers-at-home so transparently that I switched it off.

I know early episodes of any show can be clunky, but when a studio executive puts words in a character's mouth like that, it's quite off-putting.
posted by infinitewindow at 7:49 PM on January 11, 2012


The show is just "Becker" with more T&A. It's a lame, formula sit-com with some 2000's relevance spray painted on. It is harmless. And WAY less lazy than 2.5 Men.
posted by gjc at 7:50 PM on January 11, 2012


Do the passing jokes focused on stereotypes really overshadow their positives?

Asians are all super-smart and they work hard like dogs!

The point isn't to be inoffensive. The point is characters should be offensive because of who they are as individuals, not who they are as disposable fill-ins for an entire race, gender or culture.
posted by chrominance at 7:54 PM on January 11, 2012 [13 favorites]


vagina
posted by neroli at 7:58 PM on January 11, 2012 [3 favorites]


Where?!
posted by Jimbob at 8:01 PM on January 11, 2012


thorny: I can't really debate you head on. The Pilot was painful for me to watch. If you enjoy it, then good god keep on enjoying it. That's what it's there for and there is too little enjoyment in this world and I think it's perverse to pass judgment on people for enjoying something harmless. Get on with your bad self.

To me, it sucks. I have some friends who love it. Those friends also love Big Bang Theory which I have WAY less of a suck-threshold for than even this. But in a way, I get it. HIMYM is kinda-sorta of this mold. The pilot and most of the first season especially have a lot of jokes aimed right at the rafters, and that sort of thing grates on my nerves, but eventually that show got so comfortable in its own skin that it became a sort of alternate-universe home.

That said, HIMYM also understood its themes and characters from the outset, but sure, Barney was a caricature for a long time before deepening. He was also played from the beginning by NPH, who could make that sort of thing work. As I alluded to above, in the show's beginning, Ted was a guy who wanted to rush into all of the trappings of adulthood that he was skipping steps and not enjoying his in-between years the way his friends were. Now, he's at the point where his in-between years are over and he's gotten nowhere on adulthood. What was once funny has turned to legitimate panic for him.

And those sorts of resonant themes are what Sepinwall et al. seem to see in the central relationship of 2 Broke Girls. Which I guess is why they wish it didn't so often tun into "The Jew, The Italian and the Red-Head Gay."
posted by Navelgazer at 8:03 PM on January 11, 2012 [2 favorites]


I don't know, laying shit on sitcoms is like shooting fish in a barrel. Except for ones that I actually enjoy, like Big Bang Theory, in which case there are hundreds of other people on Metafilter willing and able to shoot it down for me.

Never heard of this show, never seen it, and from reading the articles above, I'm pretty sure I'm not going to bother to.
posted by Jimbob at 8:03 PM on January 11, 2012


I think Big Bang Theory would be better if they showed like 30 seconds of the nerds at the beginning then the rest of the show was them watching Firefly.
posted by Ad hominem at 8:05 PM on January 11, 2012 [12 favorites]


i really like the big bang theory. i know it's everyone's favorite shitting throne, but you can't really compare it to the racism and sexism on display in 2 broke girls. they're both shitty sitcoms, but that's not really what's being discussed here.
posted by nadawi at 8:08 PM on January 11, 2012 [1 favorite]


and they just one the Peoples Choice award
posted by HappyHippo at 8:22 PM on January 11, 2012


Moy's character is an entrepreneur (so what if he's got an accent!)

Long Duk Dong
posted by cazoo at 8:27 PM on January 11, 2012 [3 favorites]


I've never seen the show, but isn't it possible that whatever you don't like is there for the same reason whatever you don't like was in All in the Family?

I thought the point of All In The Family's race humor was that the writers assumed the audience would view Archie Bunker as hopelessly out-of-touch. There was a lovability aspect given to him, of course, being the star of the show, but this was despite his flaws; not because of them. This is what confused me when people compared Married: With Children to All In The Family. Al Bundy's crass sexism isn't meant to be looked upon with a bit of bittersweet pity; it's lauded and cheered. And in the case of 2 Broke Girls, we have a supporting cast of some tired, wafer-thin racial stereotypes orbiting around our two heroes. If there's some kind of Bunkeresque pathos going on here, I'm just not seeing it, I guess.
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 8:29 PM on January 11, 2012 [5 favorites]


Apart from everything else that's a travesty about this incident, the fact that "dimensionalize," "build them out," and "they are the engine, they are the heart, they are the soul, they are the acid" are parts of the Hollywood vernacular is so depressing that it's beyond description.
posted by blucevalo at 8:31 PM on January 11, 2012 [1 favorite]


I caught a scene or two from what I think was a rerun of an earlier episode. I watched maybe three minutes. During that time there were a couple jokes about "doing Puerto Ricans" and then a trip to a cupcake decorating class with a couple of stereotypical mafia girls types, one of the women was Carla Gallo. I don't like sitcoms anyway but I thought that was pretty weak, as in aiming for the lowest hanging fruit, comedically. That the show is popular while being heavily criticized for its lazy, racial humor, unfortunately, doesn't surprise my in the least.
posted by IvoShandor at 8:55 PM on January 11, 2012


I had no idea what that show was about, so I checked out a preview. That show looks god-awful. I guess as more people move away from TV as their primary means of entertainment, the shows on network TV (and cable, probably) become increasingly low-brow and moronic.
posted by delmoi at 8:56 PM on January 11, 2012


I took the show off my DVR earlier this week. For every 22 minutes, there's a few minutes of something that's not dreck. It's usually when either of the main characters are vulnerable or when Kat Dennings gets to be gleeful (like in the hoarder episode because I know a few people who'd equally be as psyched). There's a grinchy heart in the show and it can be pretty awesome but I don't want to sit and fast-forward through the majority of the show or pretend to not wince at its race jokes.

It's a little frustrating because the show could be so much better. I can think of two scenes in the diner where it wasn't about stereotypes so it's certainly possible. But if King isn't interested, then I don't have to reconsider.

Plus, midseason time!
posted by zix at 9:04 PM on January 11, 2012


DVR viewing is now tracked as well. It does not result in great but low-rated shows being massively more popular. Don't get me wrong -- I wish this were true, but I have seen literally no evidence that it's true except that people really, really can't believe that other people watch the things they can't stand.

Nelson sent me a viewership survey once. In the envelope were five crisp, sequentially numbered $1 bills. It was pretty odd.

I guess they wanted to guilt trip you into filling out the survey. And I did feel a little guilty not doing so, but while I was usually watching TDS/Colbert but actually I didn't watch any TV at all I think they were actually in reruns.

Oh well.
posted by delmoi at 9:14 PM on January 11, 2012


so I finally saw Community, and it's brilliant.

apparently, it's also been cancelled.

Parks and Rec is also very good, though the silliness of Community (and the geek references) is a bit more my personal style. But Ron Swanson (and the guy who plays him) is so brilliant.
posted by jb at 9:19 PM on January 11, 2012


I'm glad to hear this being addressed. The diner scenes are atrocious, but you can see the affected actors trying to salvage the poor lines given with the best line reads possible. Specially Jonathan Kite, man, his desperation is almost palpable.

And WTF is Garret Morris is doing? DJ'ing ? Diner Cashiers DJ?
posted by djrock3k at 9:21 PM on January 11, 2012


It's on CBS and it's a multi-camera with a laugh track. We should be grateful they're not making "Ike" jokes.
posted by drjimmy11 at 9:22 PM on January 11, 2012


jb - NOT CANCELLED - everyone should still totally be bugging NBC though to let them know we care.
posted by nadawi at 9:23 PM on January 11, 2012 [5 favorites]


Community isn't officially cancelled. It's on indefinite hiatus, which certainly isn't great, but a full third season will air, and there is some sliver of reason to remain hopeful for a fourth and final season.
posted by Navelgazer at 9:23 PM on January 11, 2012


jb, bite your tongue!
posted by the man of twists and turns at 9:24 PM on January 11, 2012


Metafilter: Just "Becker" with more T&A.
posted by Apropos of Something at 9:25 PM on January 11, 2012


(so what if he's got an accent!)

Thing is, Matthew Moy doesn't have an accent, and there's not much of a reason for his character to have one.
posted by Sys Rq at 9:46 PM on January 11, 2012


Oh god no, Garrett Morris is in that piece of crap? What a shame!

It's one of those shows I despised from the commercials, bearing in mind that they're specifically designed to make people want to watch.
posted by Occula at 10:05 PM on January 11, 2012 [1 favorite]


" I gotta believe it's just that people like Kat Dennings and dislike Whitney Cummings."

No, it's that the promo for Whitney was aggressively offputting and unfunny while the promo for 2 broke girls was cure.

(are you there chelsea was just a steaming pile of poo.)
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 10:50 PM on January 11, 2012


It's "fully fledged" or "fully fleshed-out"... Perhaps this guy has no place talking about writing at all...
posted by benzo8 at 11:15 PM on January 11, 2012 [1 favorite]


Emily Nussbaum has summed it up pretty nicely.
posted by KMB at 11:36 PM on January 11, 2012


Perhaps this guy has no place talking about writing at all...

Oh come on, he lives in a world where there can always be another revision. I forgive extempooraneity easily for a lot of professions.
posted by rhizome at 1:35 AM on January 12, 2012


He specifically mentioned "facials," and the panel seemed confused

I'm waiting for the episode where the girls break a cup, and there's only one left.
posted by obiwanwasabi at 2:09 AM on January 12, 2012 [4 favorites]


That Onion article contained the sentence: "Which, fine."

It made me want to kill myself.
posted by littlerobothead at 2:42 AM on January 12, 2012


The writing's only half the problem. Kat Denning delivers her lines as if she's trying to get through the intersection before the yellow light turns red.
posted by klarck at 5:34 AM on January 12, 2012


2 Broke Girls, 1 Cup?
posted by kcds at 6:07 AM on January 12, 2012


Nielson ratings have little to do with what people are actually watching. Small sample size of folks who are late adopters of all the fantastic time-shifting devices one can plug into their TVs these days.

Nielsen ratings account for time shifting, if you didn't know. You put down when the show was recorded, and when you actually watched it.

"Actually watching"? Why do people want to deny that people have low-brow tastes in TV, when every other form of media is clearly dominated by low-brow options? Just because the websites and people you talk to don't watch the shows that are highly rated doesn't mean the ratings are wrong... it means you are living in a bubble.
posted by smackfu at 6:33 AM on January 12, 2012 [1 favorite]


I'm still wondering how Whitney Cummings ended up getting two shows on television.
posted by anniecat at 6:54 AM on January 12, 2012 [1 favorite]


2 Broke Girls has been commended as being strongly vaginal, which bothers some men. The word itself makes some men uncomfortable. "Vagina."
posted by kirkaracha at 7:01 AM on January 12, 2012 [7 favorites]


"Vagina."

(Twitches in chair and scratches scalp while wincing)
posted by Mcable at 7:46 AM on January 12, 2012


I'm still wondering how Whitney Cummings ended up getting two shows on television.

Horrible dark magicks, presumably. Possibly the opening of the sixth seal.
posted by elizardbits at 7:56 AM on January 12, 2012


God that AV Club article was just horrible

Over the past, say, two years, I've been bummed at the way the AV Club has steadily slid in quality. Their OG crew of writers are still good, and a few of the new additions are, too, but the site as a whole has started to adopt the nihilistic snottiness that they used to be a welcome refuge from. Boo.
posted by COBRA! at 7:59 AM on January 12, 2012


Agreed. I really dislike Todd VanDerWerff's meandering, overly personal editorial style, which now has a death grip on the entire TV Club section. His article about this debacle (WHICH BY THE WAY IS 1898 WORDS LONG) reads like a dispatch from a college freshman who just learned the word "scrum."
posted by superfluousm at 8:08 AM on January 12, 2012 [1 favorite]


Eh. I like the conversational style.
posted by Navelgazer at 8:13 AM on January 12, 2012


like a dispatch from a college freshman who just learned the word "scrum."

*heads over to Urban Dictionary*
posted by anniecat at 8:19 AM on January 12, 2012


I like the show, I agree though that the diner scenes are weak. I totally agree that the ancillary characters are very thin and stereotypical. I can only hope that it changes a bit and that if these characters are going to stick around, that they get fleshed out and become real people, instead of background.

Love Kat and Beth and I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE that Kat doesn't look like every other woman on television. She looks like a real person.

I also like that the 2 Broke Girls talk about a butt-load of things other than men.
posted by Ruthless Bunny at 11:12 AM on January 12, 2012 [1 favorite]


I've never watched an entire episode, but I seem to have landed on it a lot while dodging commercials. Basically what you have are two really fun, charismatic and eminently watchable leads carrying an utterly shit show on their backs. I hope they get a better show one day that at least meets them halfway.
posted by George_Spiggott at 11:34 AM on January 12, 2012


As a watcher of many a current sitcom, the thing about 2 Broke Girls is that it can be a hilarious sitcom when it focuses on the two main characters. At their best, they can pull off a "Lucy and Ethel-lite" vibe.

As another aside, I'm really shocked that no one in this thread has mentioned "Happy Endings." That show is really fun.
posted by drezdn at 1:05 PM on January 12, 2012


Other than maybe Parks and Rec, nothing has made me laugh more this season than Happy Endings. Unlike Parks and Rec or HIMYM, I don't care much about the plottiness parts of the show, but goddamn the jokes are (usually) funny as hell and delivered by actors with great timing and delivery and chemistry with each other.
posted by kmz at 3:43 PM on January 12, 2012


According to the Toronto Star, CBS had to defend racist humor again for another show, this one starring Rob Schneider.

The charges of racist humour were raised again a few hours later during the CBS session for Rob Schneider's new sitcom, Rob.

Mind you, 2 Broke Girls at least is occasionally funny. Rob is just plain awful. And possibly offensive.

“Everyone's got a family,” Schneider protests. “This just happens to be a Hispanic family. There's always one person who doesn't fit in or somebody misunderstanding someone, so I think it's relatable for everyone. CBS has been really supportive to having Spanish actors. It's wonderful to have this on TV. I think it will be fun for everyone.

“I want people to think and laugh hard. Our agenda is to get some laughs. We're not the Charlie Rose show.”

If only for the fact that Charlie Rose will still be on the air a month from now.


Spanish actors, Rob? Like from Spain?

On a side note, I'm really grateful that the TV critics took it upon themselves to call MPK out for ethnic stereotyping and lame jokes.

I notice that I have a really hard time watching a show that only has white people on it, and has caricatures of Asians. All the shows I've always liked have a mixed race cast. Scrubs, Community, 30 Rock, the Office. I never liked Friends because it seemed really bizarre to me that they could all live in NYC and go to such great lengths to avoid minorities for the majority of the seasons.
posted by anniecat at 5:19 PM on January 12, 2012


Correction: Seems like there's at least one Spanish actress on the show, on that's actually from Spain.
posted by anniecat at 5:22 PM on January 12, 2012


The show is fucking terrible. My wife and I tried, but could barely make it through a single episode. It had, on paper, a lot of the right elements but they just don't fit together well.

It's unfortunate.
posted by purephase at 7:04 PM on January 12, 2012


Actually, it's not unfortunate at all. Network TV sucks.

I'm still bummed about Community
posted by purephase at 7:05 PM on January 12, 2012


I never liked Friends because it seemed really bizarre to me that they could all live in NYC and go to such great lengths to avoid minorities for the majority of the seasons.

Then they gave Ross an African-American girlfriend. Wait, not "gave". I mean "used a wooden mallet and a shoehorn to finally put a non-white person in New York City."
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 8:00 PM on January 12, 2012 [1 favorite]


DVR viewing is now tracked as well. It does not result in great but low-rated shows being massively more popular.

I don't even have a TV anymore. I watch online. Do they count Hulu viewings?
posted by anniecat at 3:18 PM on January 13, 2012


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