Edited By Elizabeth J. Meyer and Dennis Carlson
9. Masculinities on The O.C.: A Critical Analysis of Representations of Gender
Gender and Television Comedy
Masculinities on The O.C.
A Critical Analysis of Representations of Gender
Elizabeth J. Meyer
Reprinted from Meyer, E. J. (2007). Masculinities on The OC: A critical analysis of representations of gender. In S. Steinberg & D. Macedo (Eds.), Handbook of Media Literacy (pp. 454–462). New York: Peter Lang.
In the winter of 2005, I was teaching a course on Media, Technology, and Education to a group of undergraduate teacher education candidates, and our class discussions often included references to popular TV shows and other media. It became clear early in the semester that virtually every student in the room was familiar with and had an opinion on the primetime Fox series The O.C. (DeLaurentis et al., 2003–present). References to this show elicited passionate discussions about the plot, characters, actors, fashion, and commentary on how they were being influenced by and interacting with the show. This is not surprising because the first season of The O.C. was popular from the moment it aired on August 5, 2003. After its first season, it cleaned up at the Teen Choice awards in 2004, winning in four categories: Best TV show, Drama/Action Adventure; TV Breakout Show; TV Actor, Drama/Adventure; and TV Breakout Star, Female (Haberman, 2004). The Nielsen ratings also reflected the success of this series’ impact on teen imaginations. The O.C. ranked in the top three for both 12- to 17-year-old girls and boys after its second season (Council,...
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