Thursday, March 10, 2011

Holly's a B*tch

On "Sexy," the latest episode of Glee:

Rachel: My choice is to be celibate.
Holly: I respect your choice. I think you're naive and frigid, but I respect your choice.

So the sex-ed teacher calls any teenager who isn't having sex naive (because there's no possible way they could survive high school without having sex) and frigid (not a sensual creature), both of which are incredibly insulting. It's also ridiculous that the assumption is that every teenager must be a slave to their desires, especially their sexual ones, and has absolutely no control over their behavior.

Then there's Emma, who hasn't consummated her marriage yet. Holly tells her, "My lips are your legs."

Is this supposed to be funny? Are we meant to be entertained by watching people get smacked down on television? There's a difference between the Holly character and the Sue Sylvester character in that Holly is meant to be relatable and fun. Sue is not. So when Sue says incredibly awful things, it's okay because that's just Sue. Plus, she usually has a different type of awfulness, one which has glimpses of humanity like when she told Kurt that she didn't think bullying was okay or when she voted for the McKinley High Glee club at Regionals. Sue's awfulness comes from her agenda and her need to put herself, her career and Cheerios first, damn the consequences. Holly isn't like that and hence her comments are a lot worse.


Ed said...

You might be the only person who doesn't watch Glee just for the songs.

Most people I talk to don't even know there's a plot.

Primum Non Nocere said...

Did you also notice that for the celibacy song, the singers wore outfits that were no doubt inspired by the fashion style of "Little House on the Prairie"? The implication was clearly that celibacy is an outdated virtue that belongs back in the days of the Oregon Trail. Not to mention that the entire celibacy song turned out to be supporting the opposing view...just to drive home the point that supporters of celibacy are idiots.

PNN: The DOG Score

Chana said...


Yeah, pretty much. I think it's stupid that the show rarely dares to confront issues in a real way- most of the time it just mocks the other viewpoint. The only good thing about this episode was the sex talk Kurt's father had with him where he said you don't need to throw yourself around and sex means something. Why couldn't that idea have also been expressed in the celibacy club?

Stubborn and Strong said...

They should add any religion people to show ppl that being religious are more likely to be celibate during high school and it is not impossible

The Nudnik said...

I own a television, but don't spend very much time watching.

I see that I am missing very little.

Jewish Atheist said...

I think you're missing the fact that "Holly Holiday" is played as something of a parody. She seems fun and carefree but is obviously as flawed as the counselor.

The viewer is expected to be shocked and disapprove of Holly's response to Rachel and her shot at Emma. Seriously. Just like in the last episode she was on we were supposed to be appalled at her advising a student to damage a teacher's car as revenge. In fact, she herself was disturbed by it.

It's spelled out a little when she talks about never having relationships that last longer than 36 hours (iirc) or when she just comes off as kind of a batcase.

It's a common trope -- the carefree wild-child who doesn't know when to set limits. If you recall, in the previous episode she was on, she explains that her attitude is a reaction to something traumatic that happened to her.

Jewish Atheist said...

I mean just look at the name "Holly Holiday."

Jewish Atheist said...

(Still have more to say, apparently...)

Will is the moral center of the show and is almost always the guy who reigns in the excesses of all sides. (He has made some missteps, but is always depicted as realizing and regretting them.)

He obviously thinks that Holly goes to far on a couple of occasions, but he is also attracted to her. Holly's storyline with Will (so far, and I can easily imagine the arc going forward if it does) is the mirror-image of the counselor's. Whereas the counselor is too frigid and cautious, Holly is too overtly sexual and not cautious enough. She's always on the manic end of fun and she frequently steps over it.

I'd like to see you comment on the Santana/Britney development. Your last post about Glee made it sound like you thought the making out scene was gratuitous, while I argued it represented reality for a large number of teenagers, who deserve to have their reality represented in fiction. The new developments make it clear that it wasn't just gratuitous and in fact may just be the process Santana is going through as she figures out her own sexuality, something that happens all the time in real life.

That's why I thought it was so distasteful that you seemed to be arguing that such depictions should not be made, as if only straight, chaste teenagers should be shown on screen, so that they can serve as role models. I think it's a lot more beneficial to have all kinds of experiences depicted in fiction, not only so that people can recognize themselves and the struggles they are going through or have gone through, but so that they can come to understand (to some small extent) other people's experiences.

Holy Hyrax said...

>a large number of teenagers, who deserve to have their reality represented in fiction.


no wonder your a liberal ;-)

Jewish Atheist said...



Holy Hyrax said...

Your comment about the young "deserving" as if they are entitled to it.

Jewish Atheist said...

LOL, seriously? They're human beings. People deserve to not have the media pretend they don't exist just because Orthodox Jews (or fundamentalist Christians or whatever) don't want other people to realize they have options.

Holy Hyrax said...

Oh please. You're so over dramatic. You will be shocked to know there are plenty of kids that do plenty of self destructive things out there. There are people that like snuff films and people that enjoy all crazy manners of self expression. They exist you know. Do they deserve having a TV show? Nobody is saying hiding them under the rug (well, some things should). But this is a TV show. They aren't entitled to anything JA.

I have a strong feeling your tone might change when you become a father...especially to a father of a teen. Then we see how many options you truly want to share with the spirit of being progressive you know.

Jewish Atheist said...

I have a strong feeling your tone might change when you become a father

I really hate when bigots bust that one out. I had a guy tell me seriously that I'd oppose white-black intermarriage once I had daughters. I guess it's the same kind of thing, huh?

Holy Hyrax said...

What the hell are you talking about???

How is what I said anything to do with bigotry? I am talking about the gratuitous scene you were mentioning. I don't watch Glee, so I assumed it was raunchy.

Jewish Atheist said...

I was talking about girl-girl kissing. I didn't actually see that scene, either, so I don't know if it was raunchy. I thought you were saying that I will object to my hypothetical daughters seeing girls kiss girls when they're teens. Apologies if I misunderstood.