Saturday, November 14, 2009

Family in the Media: Current Day

Television has recently addressed many new family issues. The wide array of family structures are now common and accepted. Shows such as Reba and Two and a Half Men portray to the viewers that there are many types of family situations. Reba addresses issues such as divorce, single motherhood, and teenage pregnancy. Reba's son Jake, teenage daughter Cheyenne, Cheyenne's husband Van, and their daughter Elizabeth all live in Reba's house. Reba's ex-husband Brock lives right next door with their daughter Kyra, his new wife Barbara Jean and their young son Henry. This unconventional living situation is accompanied by the close relationship amongst ALL of the family members. This show is showing the viewers that the "mother, father, and children" idea of a household is no longer the only way to live. Two and a Half Men also share this message. Charlie is a jingle writer with a large house on the beach that he shares with his divorced brother, Alan, and his nephew, Alan's son, Jake. Charlie is a man that has had many women in and out of the house, while Alan is nearly the opposite from his brother. Their living situation as well as their lifestyles also contradict what society once viewed as the norm.

-Do you think these current show correctly depict the multitude of family structures current in our society today?


  1. I think that these shows do depict the family structures that exist in society today. Another good show that is a good example would be "The Secret Life Of the American Teenager" where it has a teenage mother, a Christian family and a gay couple all in the show. The media wants to appeal to what the viewers want, and they tend to want things that they could relate to.
    But also shows tend to make issues seem better then they are to make them more entertaining. For example, in Reba, she gets along with her ex husband and her husbands wife. Her daughter who got pregnant is still with the father of her baby. Although issues like that happen they rarely do.
    -Lisa Rodriguez

  2. I think that TV shows are starting to show families that are more diverse but I think there are some kinds of families that are not represented on many shows. For example, I do not see many shows where there are gay parents, single mothers or fathers, and lower class families. Although TV is slowly changing from having most shows portray the typical "Brady bunch" (white, middle/upper class family with mom, dad and children) as the ideal family to having more types of families I still think that there needs to be even more diversity on shows to include all types of people and families. I think the media is a powerful, influential institution that can influence families and individuals in our society and I think it would be great if TV shows could promote acceptance and celebrating differences.

    Taylor Faulkner