Ideologies Presented in The Big Bang Theory/ Game of Thrones

Currently in todays culture it becomes quite clear that there is a overwhelming endless supply of examples of media content that provides (mis) representations, racism, stereotyping and such, that we are exposed to on a daily basis. These two shows definitely fit into that description. An Ideology “is basically a system of meaning that helps define and explain the world and that makes value judgements about that world. Ideologue is related to concepts such as worldview, belief system, and values, but is broader that those terms” (Croteau, Hoynes 2014). However sometimes ideologies are outdated such as what we see present in these two shows where the women are basically portrayed as beautiful, yet dumb and only serve the purposes of being there for their man and finding love. For example in the Big Bang Theory we see Penny as the beautiful women who lives across the hall from friends Sheldon and Leonard who is portrayed as a stereotypical young women who likes to party and have fun. She also has had numerous boyfriends and it seems that the show is had made her into a character that likes to “sleep around” as some would say. Another old ideology is that women were always suited best for either a secretary role as seen in the show Mad Men that takes place back in the 1960’s on up, or suited for a waitress where they are serving to the men. In the show Big Bang Theory we see just that as Penny works at the Cheese Cake Factory as a waitress. Here in the link provided we see a joke about on of the character Raj, trying to get Penny to go get him another beer, which is in fact showing old ideologies about women and men As well the men in the show are the stereotypical geeks or nerds that don’t like to play sports, go out and party and talk to women.

In Game of Thrones almost every episode has some form of enforcing these dominant ideologies but most recently this past season has come under scrutiny for a rape scene that was on display in the show. During episode “Unbowed, Unbent, Unbroken” Sansa Stark, one of the main characters was raped on her wedding day by her husband. This episode was one that seem to spark controversy because it seemed to be an re-occuring theme in the show of what we could call objectification. What this show symbolizes to me is the objectification of women and how they are here for mens pleasure. The entire show you see numerous examples of how the creators of the show and HBO deciding that this type of sexualization (dominant ideology of sex sells) to the audience. What is really astonishing is the fact that in the books, which the show is based off of. There are less scenes of rape and sexualization of men and women. But the like most media today sex sells and thats why we continue to see it present in our shows.

This just shows that the media owners can do what ever they want because they have all the power over us. This can be an example of hegemony because the book talked about how power is not necessarily held by force, but maybe “that of culture in the realm of everyday life-where people essentially agree to current social arrangements” (pg.159) Meaning that we give the media conglomerates power when we keep watching shows such as these even though they portray themes of negative ideologies and stereotypes. Which in turn gives them control over us as we seem to be pleased with the content that they produce time and time again. That the only way to overcome and stand up and challenge the way media portrays these are to become an opposition audience. In order to see change from the way the media displays their content, the audiences must become oppositional and challenge what they see with a critical eye. They must learn and ask questions and become sophisticated citizens otherwise we will continue to see the current themes of mis-representation amongst our beloved shows.


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