I Hate Pink Lions!
Look at me, I'm so pretty!

I know in the last two or three years there has been a lot of crazy talk about equality of the sexes. I find this crazy because it's clear to me that the sexes are NOT equal. Men can write their names in the snow. Women can apply mascara in a moving vehicle without putting their eyes out. Both are amazing skills of great benefit to the human race which are all-but-unreproducible by those of the opposite gender. So equality is out, folks.

But what I can get behind is sexual parity: you know, we're different, but both just as good. What kind of a world would we have if every once in a while on a lone snowshoe hike through virgin forest you didn't come upon "Randall" in gleaming golden letters, giving you a sense of connectedness not just to nature but to all of humanity? And what kind of world would it be if the woman you got into a car with bore any resemblance to the one you got out with? Not a world I'd want to live in, that's for sure.

The problem, however, is the media, which is full of negative stereotypes of both genders. We are taught all sorts of vile lies about each other: women are just sexpots, men are only good for hauling large furniture and playing with power tools. There are more, but those are the funniest ones in my favorite shows.

Now, I haven't come up with an answer to rectify the negative stereotypes of men in the media (I almost thought of one, but then I saw this amazing 18 volt cordless electric drill set at Home Depot that I absolutely had to have, and promptly forgot about my unifying answer to resolving bad male stereotypes).

HOWEVER, I have figured out how to excise negative female stereotypes from all media.

Excited? I know I am. Better put down your Skill saws, boys, and cap that mascara, girls!

The answer is that we must have a governing body that oversees all television content. Much like the AMPAA reviews most movies in the US and gives them a rating based on a number of qualifiers, we must create a new body that watches TV. The government can sponsor this, I'm sure. It will give the government something to do since I know it's hard for the feds to create new jobs that cost millions of dollars while at the same time ignoring the pothole in my street and the crack house next door.

Sorry, I blathered there.

At any rate, this panel will comprise exclusively of nine boys who will range in age from six to eight years old. They will be appointed by the President for life. If they do not die at age eight we can either give them "emeritus" status and let them retire or have them killed. We can leave that detail to the electorate.

But this panel will be in charge of watching every bit of television and they will determine whether a show can air based on what I like to call "The Voltron Effect."

Voltron, for those who don't remember, was a really cool cartoon that starred five warriors in a faraway universe. Each of them had a really cool transport ship in the shape of the lion (I bet they always got really cool looks at valet parking). They also (in times of crisis, which happened every half an hour and sometimes even every fifteen minutes) could join together to form... VOLTRON!

Voltron, in a word, was kickin'. He also had a kind of magic sword that he would grab in his lion mouth/hands and whack bad guys with it.

So I know what you're thinking (or remembering): nirvana. Either that or you're thinking this sounds a lot like Power Rangers, in which case you're right, except that Voltron was neither stupid nor irritating nor a ripoff of Voltron.

So Voltron ruled the airwaves.

Then something dreadful happened. So dreadful I hesitate to even mention it.

What was it?

Okay, I'll spill:

It was...

... this is too hard...

Must...

be...

strong...

It was...

The PINK LION.

See, there was this princess. And she was smart and beautiful and really kept a neat castle (I mean that... the thing could turn into a space ship for crying out loud!). But then something happened and she decided she wanted her own lion. So the group, which used to be a cohesive group now had to figure out how to integrate a new lion, which the princess insisted be pink. (Now hold on a minute, don't get mad at me for not liking this. It has nothing to do with her being a girl, and everything to do with the way the writers USED her girl character. Read on....)

So I'm like eight years old when this happens. And from the moment it does, Voltron sucks. Because now the Princess exists basically to a) look very out of placed in the much darker color scheme of the other non-pink lions and b) to get irritated in EVERY SINGLE EPISODE and stride off in a huff. She invariably did this right before a bad guy attacked, and since she would run off in her lion (because she didn't want to have to double park the castle), that meant the other four guys couldn't form Voltron. So due to her hissy fits the planet kept getting pushed to the brink of destruction.

I was APPALLED.

I had the same reaction to Daisy Duke in the Dukes of Hazard: every time she was on the TV I knew there was about to be a lot less "Yeeeee-haw"-in' and a lot more rescuing of a girl whose only purpose in life was to wear short shorts and get kidnapped.

So quick, flash forward to our nine-man (er, boy) panel of television sexual stereotype guardians. They will each be giving a switch which they are only allowed to press when a girl is on screen. The button will say "Cool" on one side and "Eww" on the other.

Too many "Ewws" and the show will receive a notice from the FCC that the girls on [said show] are serving as nothing more than damsels in distress or mobile sperm banks. Changes will have to be made to the scripts in the future. Further "Eww" notices may result in government fines or the show's cancellation.

This will, in a matter of months, result in shows not only showcasing women's actual TALENTS (as opposed to their physical attributes or their ability to scream loud enough to make them good hostages), but also would probably result in the original Dukes of Hazard making a comeback.

I mean, seriously, can you imagine the recentish remakes of the Dukes making it past the tough gaze of this nine-boy panel (which we will call the Cootie Review)?

The scene:

Cootie Panel Member: Hey, cool, it's the car! I hope that... what... what the... whose that cootie monster with the golden tresses?*
Cootie Panel Government Moderator: Her name is Jessica Simpson.
CPM: Well, she's gross.
CPGM (who is a middle aged white dude): [wipes foam from mouth] Some would disagree.
CPM: Well, some would be wrong. I mean look at her, she's... she's... AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAUGH! What's she doing in a bikini? What's wrong with this show? Where's the car?? Where's the CAR???? [stabbing "Eww" button repeatedly]

I'm telling you. This could work. If I ever accomplish one thing in my life, other than being a good husband and father... and a really cool martial artist... and selling a million copies of my books (The Haunted is doing great on amazon... pick yours up today!)... or being a champion badminton player... or winning the Nobel prize for discovering a new way to market pocket lint...

Other than that, if I accomplish a single thing, it WILL be the institution of the Cootie Panel at the federal level. Gone will be the negative female stereotypes. Gone will be women as playthings.

And gone forever will be that stupid frickin' pink lion.





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About the author

Michaelbrent is a bestselling author and produced screenwriter. He also blogs. And sometimes makes amusing-shaped pudding pops. His books are currently available to intelligent and discerning purchasers (like you), so check 'em out here!

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