Friday, October 10, 2008

Feminist: I Read Your Paper for This? Pt.1

This morning, I got to the train station earlier than usual, so I had time to pick up a copy of the free NY paper, am New York.

Oh boy.

After throwing away the outside cover (which is just a bunch of huge ads), I got to the real cover and was greeted with: "Fey’s Palin impression has some wondering if ‘SNL’ will sway the election." You've got to be kidding me.

I shall now give you the dialogue I had with myself as I read:
Whether it’s asking for a lifeline in her twangy voice when stumped by CBS’s Katie Couric or playing the flute in her debate with Joe Biden, voters might be getting to know Tina Fey as Sarah Palin rather than the vice presidential candidate herself.
Well, yeah, that tends to happen when a candidate refuses to do interviews except for a select few with a laundry list of conditions.
But has the impersonation gone too far? New Yorkers don’t think so.
Thank goodness for that.
The fact that Americans knew so little about Palin when she was picked by Sen. John McCain has helped exacerbate the problem of her identity being tightly bound to the characterization by Fey
Perhaps if she ever bothered to hold a press conference, or didn't have a scripted debate, or agreed to do more interviews, the McCain camp could counteract this. Maybe that's just me...
"It’s a tremendous help to the Democrats," said John Leo, a senior fellow at the Manhattan Institute and a popular-culture expert. "It doesn’t create a feeling about Palin. But I think it solidifies or magnifies what’s in people’s minds."
If this is already on people's minds, then isn't it a good thing that the skit is bringing this out there? It's not as if it's based on lies, since the funniest stuff is verbatim. People should trust their judgment, no? *long pause* Wait, what's a "popular-culture expert???"

Read the full story here. My dialogue with am New York did not end there, unfortunately, and I'll be posting part 2 later today.

For more on Fey as Palin, check out the post by Le Loup-garou, and two responses by aviva, here and here.

(Cross-posted at Jump off the Bridge.)


Habladora said...

Well, I really do feel like art, literature, and pop-culture can greatly influence people's views of themselves, their world, and others. You are right-on, though, that if the McCain campaign really wanted to combat the impression of Palin that Fey's impersonation gives, they would schedule more interviews with the real S.P.

Not-So-Normal-Mom said...

Well...I also saw an article the other day that said that Fey's appearance was going to sway more people to vote Republican because she's just so darn likeable. In the end, I hope that people are just able to seperate reality from fiction.

Kekla said...

It's been fun talking about this online, and I feel it's an important discussion, but I'm a little surprised to see it covered on the front page of an actual "newspaper." (Today I feel that skeptical quotes regarding AMNY's journalistic authority are justified.) This coverage just brings home the point that the line between entertainment and news is seriously blurring.

frau sally benz said...

I also recognize that there is always going to be some influence, but the way it was presented just rubbed me the wrong way.

The more I think about it, the more upset I am that this is also unfair to Palin. The McCain campaign is running the show here, and they're the ones that are making this evolve much more than it probably would have. Plus, HE'S on the top of the ticket, not her, so what does it say about the GOP and their strategy that her getting this attention is hurting their chances?