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Just to get it said.

There was once a TV program, "Quincy, M.E.", starring Jack Klugman as a medical examiner. I grew to dislike the series, because he was never wrong. Never. Not once. Never a mistaken diagnosis, never an ethically questionable call. And he knew it. And he was a bully because of it. And I couldn't stand him.

Now I have House. And Grissom. And Gibbs. And whoever the hell Sam Waterston plays on "Law and Order". They're never wrong. And they're obnoxious about it in varying degrees, from Grissom's remoteness to House's aggressive overbearing superiority complex and despicable attitude.

Night after night after night. Superior, supercilious, infallible, overweening egos on parade.

Are we all that desperate for The Perfect Father Figure that we'll stand for being abused by them by proxy seven nights a week?

Sick of them. Just tired of the whole self-righteous lot of them. Hawkeye Pierce, where are you?

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( 21 comments — Leave a comment )
deckardcanine
Mar. 6th, 2009 04:37 am (UTC)
That makes me feel better for not watching all the most popular shows. I knew there was something about those guys.
sleepyjohn00
Mar. 6th, 2009 05:22 am (UTC)
I stick my head in a toilet, so that you don't have to ;)
ccdesan
Mar. 6th, 2009 04:48 am (UTC)
Oh boy, I get to hear the rant in person and then read the reprint later.

Another reason I no longer have a hypnogourd...

Watch out for falling helicopters!
sleepyjohn00
Mar. 6th, 2009 05:15 am (UTC)
If it weren't for "Mythbusters" and "Top Gear", I'd set fire to the babblebox.
dhlawrence
Mar. 6th, 2009 05:03 am (UTC)
Self righteous? Not my Hawkeye!

It's probably a byproduct of all the homes where fathers are absent or good as absent. Same with sitcoms where women are frigid, self-righteous shrews and men are bumbling dolts who couldn't survive ten minutes without Mommy taking care of them.
sleepyjohn00
Mar. 6th, 2009 05:20 am (UTC)
Exactly. Hawkeye was a good surgeon, but he wasn't perfect. He lost patients. He made mistakes with people. And he maintained some sense of balance among it all, without being a prick. Even Dr. Winchester came face-to-face with himself once in a while.

Between Clif Huxtable, Tim Taylor, Homer Simpson, and all the rest of the idiot dads, there just isn't a decent dad-image on TV. Except for the whose who have lost their family through a Tragic Accident. Pfui.
dhlawrence
Mar. 6th, 2009 05:23 am (UTC)
He could be quite arrogant at times, even when he was on the losing end. An interesting point--in the TV series, we never saw the alleged quack Frank Burns lose a patient. It was referred to, and one came down with a post-operative infection, but he never had one die.

I find Bill Cosby to be a more positive role model now that he isn't in a sitcom.
sleepyjohn00
Mar. 6th, 2009 05:39 am (UTC)
In the original book, Frank Burns (who was not the utter fool Larry Linville played) was "addicted to a common practice in the medical dodge: if a patient died, it was either God's will or someone else's fault." A patient did die, and a very naive and clumsy orderly tried to resuscitate (sp?) him, and Burns announced "Boone, you killed my patient!" Boone went into a corner and cried. Trapper John caught Frank behind the surgery tent and beat him like a cheap carpet.

Read the book, if you haven't already. if nothing else, The Second Coming of Trapper John is worth it!
dhlawrence
Mar. 6th, 2009 05:45 am (UTC)
They did it that way in the movie, too. I believe the judgement was "I was going to make McIntyre Chief Surgeon. Now I'll have to wait at least a week to do it."

Have you read any of the sequel books? Since I've only heard a little about them, I get the feeling they weren't very memorable.
sleepyjohn00
Mar. 6th, 2009 10:07 am (UTC)
The first one, "MASH goes to Maine", was OK; basically, they reassemble the team up in Hawkeye's home town, and do some good surgery. After that, they're thoroughly forgettable.
james_b
Mar. 6th, 2009 11:28 am (UTC)
Much of the first season of the MASH TV series also followed the original book, but to a lesser degree than the movie.
dianagaidheal
Mar. 6th, 2009 09:53 pm (UTC)
I know I'm young, but still....
I loved the MASH series so much that I bought it. Some may think I'm nuts. It's great humor but also sobering.

I think Bill Cosby is a great role model. I refuse to compare him to Homer Simpson.
sleepyjohn00
Mar. 7th, 2009 04:30 am (UTC)
Re: I know I'm young, but still....
Bill Cosby is a good role model. Clif Huxtable was an amiable fool who wouldn't have lived to the end of the day without his wife fixing his problems, just like all the other dads in prime time TV.
oceansedge
Mar. 8th, 2009 09:39 pm (UTC)
Re: I know I'm young, but still....
on the other hand Cliff Huxtable suffered from the same idiocy that your House's and Grissom's do.... he was too perfect.

Sorry Dad's don't come that way either. Sure there should be good parental role models - and gods knows better than Tim and the Bitch Taylor - but it seems that TV likes (and probably always will) like to play to extremes.

Oddly enough, I like House and Grissom (at least before it jumped the shark and he started sleeping with Sara - how very unGrissom like) and Sam Waterson's Law and Order character. Mostly I think because I have always been deeply attracted to brilliant men, who by their very nature tend to be a bit arrogant and caustic and tend not to suffer fools gladly - but in that they also tend to be flawed individuals of course the same could be said of Hawkeye Pierce (and I loved him too). My good friend of almost 30 years DrFreud is one of those, and I was deeply painfully in love with one for 7+ years, fortunately I finally met a man who is both brilliant, genius, a little bit flawed, a lot weird, and extremely kind and selfless.

Honestly one of the reasons I liked Law and Order from the beginning was it wasn't always about 'pat' answers and everything being 'OK' by the end of 60 minutes, it often has left open huge wide gaps of neither life nor justice is perfect.

Now if only we could see Hawkeye as a Dad....
sleepyjohn00
Mar. 8th, 2009 11:36 pm (UTC)
Re: I know I'm young, but still....
Clif Huxtable was an OK doctor, but every time he tried to do something around the house or deal with his children, his wife had to bail him out. Professionally, OK; behind his own door, just another moronic dad.

I resent being condescended to, by doctors, lawyers, or politicians. If someone's knowledge base in their field is superior to mine, that's fine, and I will defer in that field, but that's no reason to be a jerk in every other aspect of life. If I acted like House does towards everyone who came to me for help in MY area of expertise, I'd be unemployed in a month.

If House et al ever had to come face to face with a situation where they were *not* The Big Poobah And Know-it-All, and had to rely on someone else's abilities, the resulting devastation of their egos would be very healthy.

Who do I admire? Hawkeye. Dumbledore. Jeffrey Sinclair and John Sheridan. Alessan di Tigana. Nick van Rijn. Ista de Chalion. People who know their jobs, but do not allow their egos to override their humanity.
dianagaidheal
Mar. 9th, 2009 12:35 am (UTC)
I forgot to reply to something
"His wife had to bail him out". In one way it's a good thing. It shows that a woman is actually respected and important. It was a different story a long time ago. Not when I was growing up, but before women's lib and such. I'm only 41, so I didn't have to deal with that sort of thing.
sleepyjohn00
Mar. 9th, 2009 05:12 pm (UTC)
Re: I forgot to reply to something
I will grant you that it was a Good Thing to have an intelligent, capable, sexy woman on TV, just to show such a thing could exist!

I found 'I Love Lucy' annoying, with the wife who's a ditz and a husband who's always bailing her out. I don't find the role reversal thirty years later any more appealing. What's wrong with having two people who are intelligent, instead of a stooge and a saviour? No comedy, I suppose.
dianagaidheal
Mar. 9th, 2009 12:15 am (UTC)
Re: I know I'm young, but still....
Thank you for that clarification.
deckardcanine
Mar. 7th, 2009 08:19 pm (UTC)
BTW, who's Gibbs? I can't look him up as easily as Grissom.
sleepyjohn00
Mar. 8th, 2009 11:36 pm (UTC)
He's the Great I-AM on 'NCIS'.
tgif007
Mar. 9th, 2009 08:32 am (UTC)
I long ago gave up watching television as the content became more and more in conflict with my religious beliefs.

I was recently in Florida taking care of my parents of they both had some medical problems, and ended up having to sit through several "House" episodes that they had on their TIVO (my parents are not observant, hence the TV addiction).

All I can say is that I was so appalled at what I had to sit though that if I still watched TV I would have thrown it out the window as soon as I returned home.

How can people sit there and have their intelligence insulted hour after hour? And how in the world can they put up with a show that glorifies someone who should be sent back to repeat kindergarten, since he obviously never learned to play well with others?

( 21 comments — Leave a comment )

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