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Rizzoli & Isles: Women Are Pawns In The Narcissistic Sexual Hierarchy - Printable Version

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Rizzoli & Isles: Women Are Pawns In The Narcissistic Sexual Hierarchy - 2Wycked - 07-03-2013 04:37 AM

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Outline Of The Show

Rizzoli & Isles is a TNT cop-procedural that first aired in 2010. It is based on a series of books by Terry Gerritsen. It is very popular amongst women & especially lesbians, who have created a great amount of fan fiction around reimaging the two as practicing homosexuals.

Let’s discuss the two main characters & a brief overview of the show.

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Detective Jane Rizzoli (portrayed by Jane Harmon): She is shown to be a tough, street-wise homicide detective. She grew up in working-class Boston and worked her way up the cop ladder to being one the most respected homicide detectives in Boston. She is fiercely independent but, predictably, has a strong compassionate streak. She is often snarky & has difficultly with keeping men around.

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Dr. Maura Isles (portrayed by Sasha Alexander) : An incredibly rich socialite who also happens to be genius & Chief Medical Examiner for Massachusetts. She is incredibly intelligent & a female version of Sheldon from “Big Bang Theory” when it comes to random information. It often is completely unbelievable, as she has an encyclopedic knowledge of muscle cars. She is always impeccably dressed, even wearing high heels to crime scenes. She is also portrayed as awkward with men, as she is very honest & straightforward and spends too much time psychoanalyzing people around here. For some reason, I really like her character, plus she is hot.

The show, obviously, centers around the two solving murders around Boston all the while engaging in female-centric banter over men, fashion & petty squabbles between the two. There is a bit of mythology in the show related to a serial killer that almost killed Rizzoli. There is more mythology related to the fact Isles was adopted by a very wealthy family & she finds out her real father was a crime lord.

Let’s talk about the show’s wildly unrealistic portrayal of the profession & the two woman’s lives. First, cops are not constantly going out, flirting with the opposite sex while drinking mimosas, then catching the killer later that night. As many other TV shows do, it paints a completely unrealistic depiction of the profession and what the job entails. The two regularly drink wine in the morgue, with dissected bodies mere feet away. Also, these same scenes often show Isles shoe shopping while she prepares her medical reports. They clearly portrayed as superior to their male counterparts & no male in the show holds a candle to their abilities. I have yet to see an episode where a male bests either one of them at their job.

Further, is the distortion of their financial lives. Isles, conveniently, comes from serious wealth, so that explains her outlandish apartment & her ungodly amount of clothing & accessories. As for Rizzoli, she is portrayed as much less well-off, but still her apartment strikes me as much nicer than it should be. They always seem to have money to eat out, drink at the bar & blow lots of money bullshitting around town.

"Don't Judge Her Because She Is Successful"

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Let's review an piece by The Last Psychiatrist about Sheryl Sandberg & media depictions of women.

Quote:Now back to work, whore, you need fulfillment

This is the ending to the article and a great summation of his argument.

TLP argues the effect the media is having on women is about teaching women what to desire, not how to desire. A common strain of narcissism is the idea that they wish to desire, but have no idea what desire feeling life. Here, TLP points out that the the Sheryl Sandberg situation doesn't show anything about personal empowerment or gender issues, just that women are being lead around by the nose once more by the media with female blessing.

He notes that the women that think Sandberg represents a gender issue, reads her book earnestly or follows the story in Cosmo or Glamour are not going to be Sheryl Sanberg's. They are going to be cubicle jockies who need these sorts of stories to act out narcissistic fantasies of how they could be. Women who will be CEO one day are not wasting their time reading about other women achieving - they are doing it themselves. Sure, they may read about other powerful people & mediate on the lessons their life presented, but they are not wasting their time reading fluff pieces intended to bolster the ego the reader.

He notes the fantasy of it when he talks about racial depictions of females in the workplace. When people complain about the lack of diversity, it often is a narcissistic complaint. The race always complained of? The lack of black women. Asian or Indian are never mentioned because white women do compete - and often lose - to those women, so they use accusations of racism in order to bolster their fantasy. They know black women, as a class, aren't as threatening as Asian or Indian women to their fantasies or real career.

In sum, the media & society needs women to plug in - or "lean in" - but their nose to the grindstone & be good worker drones. The media sells women on the this fantasy that a marginal pay increase coupled with significant increases in responsibility is empowerment. You go girl! You are smashing the glass ceiling! You are showing those men who the real tough gender is! Oh, wait - why are all the men dropping out & playing video games? Do NOT dare go your own way - we need you here to validate our successes!

However, this whole situation reeks of narcissism and the fact women still need to posture & preen before men, desperately seeking male approval.

Honestly, what the hell is the difference between a woman with a plunging neckline leaning into you, talking about how she loves sex or a female showing off her fancy medical degree, talking about how she got a residency at a John Hopkins Hospital. There is none. Both are calculated in order to pique your interest in order to get your approval.

Of course, the analysis that TLP lacks is the hypergamic analysis. Women are seeking alpha male approval. Beta male approval is like giving just one beer to an alcoholic - satisfying for a bit, but never for long. In the game of sexual music chairs, women can feel they are quickly losing ground to other women, so they do what do what they are told by society - go to school, develop a career & spend your money on empowering material goods. Date those unmarriageable bad boys in your 20's, then find a business partner - I mean a beta - who will "support" you, i.e. be a second-class partner in the relationship so you can focus on that all-empowering career.

The script is all too predictable, as women need to balance their sexual desires with the liberated life plan gifted to them by society. The two combine to form the trainwreck of sex & the workplace we see in America today.

We see this reflected in "Rizzoli & Isles." Two women, playing the careerist gal, who tie in their love lives & personal interests into their job. They followed the script, they followed their "passion" and became good worker cogs in the machine. Their self-fulfillment is a narcissistic fantasy, as the women watching want to identify with Rizzoli's passion for solving crimes & Isle's dedication to the medical profession. That is why the show is so popular amongst women - especially women in the 20's & 30's age bracket.

Most women in real life don't experience this fulfillment. They supremely desire approval from authority figures, so they go to college, study and get jobs in order to find themselves. They follow the script of dating (fucking) through their twenties, then settling down with a man who meets their rigorous criteria - i.e. he meets her superficial criteria she can show on Facebook & Pinterest while also being controllable. Love? What a patriarchal construct. Empowered women don't love or lust after their men, they engage in negotiations & dialogues based on mutual reciprocity & deconstructing gendered norms.

The Shrinking American Male

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Wait how does masculinity relate to a female-centric show like Rizzoli & Isles? You will see.

One key issue with feminism & masculinity is feminism's complete ignorance of how society works. Feminists have no issues with concepts of deadbeat dads, sex-crazed males or any socially pushed stereotype aimed at defining masculinity. Understand the vacillation here - either women seek male worship or completely devalue men. That is pure narcissism. When faced with male devaluation, feminists do not care at all. That is because they are only interest in male worship.

Which is the exposure of Valenti above. She isn't interested in talking about masculinity in a way that involves men, she is only interested in talking about masculinity in a way that reinforces male worship of women. She assumes the link between men & guns is inherently bad. What she doesn't understand - and this is reflected in PUA critiques by feminists - is if she manages to divorce guns & masculinity, then many men will need a new source of approval. In other words, men will need a new authority figure to shore up their sense of masculinity.

When feminists complain about male inability to properly value & understand female contributions to society, they are not just looking for male worship, but they are trying to redirect socially-approved indicators of masculinity. Instead a man getting validation for his masculinity via owing a gun & voting Republican, he gets his masculinity validating by volunteering at Planned Parenthood & voting for Democrats.

The practical effect of said men matters; but psychologically, it is the same impulses - needing outside validation of their insecure relationship with their masculinity. Remember, society doesn't want independently secure people, they want people whose confidence depends on their approval.

Consider the issue of whether Katy Perry is a feminist or not. Why does it matter? If feminism is about equal rights & personal autonomy, it stands to reason not all women will chose to identify with feminism. However, the comments are interesting. It seems the drones are upset a socially prominent female does not identify as a feminist. But we worked for you! Without us you would not be where you are! Acknowledge us!

I see analogies to Rizzoli & Isles. The viewers probably see themselves as not just part & parcel of the show's success, but the success of the characters in the show. It is narcissistic self-insertion.

Uhh, Dr. Isles wouldn't be a popular character on TNT without my dogged rewatching of the show on Hulu. Don't claim I could have been studying for the MCAT instead of watching the show you misogynist. God, it is so tough to be a woman these days!

We get it - you got your approval. Yay! An anonymous blogger with the handle of 2Wycked just favorited your tweet. What an accomplishment.

Back to the shrinking American male, it is very much fueled by an anti-male culture, but it also is fueled by male sexual recognition that traditional professions associated with power are not as they were.

Consider this post by TLP. Men are not just falling behind, but they are purposely not engaging in social scripts handed to them. The specter of male privilege looms over the piece, but I consider the fact that men are more likely, subconsciously or consciously, admit how power really works instead of clinging to trappings of power.

The most deluded males I know pursuing authority are died-in-wool beta males. Sensing the increasing vacating of positions of authority by alphas - because alphas recognize the power is illusory - they take to those positions, thinking they will gain the sexual power afforded to alphas by women.

The whole issue of feminism, power & women is based out of the inability of women, collectively, come to terms with the fact that the trappings of power does not equal actual power. Women gild their lives with the trappings - expensive apartments, rare paintings & fancy degrees. They show off their power in the abstract with no relation to their reality.

We see this in Rizzoli & Isles. I see yet another episode flickering across my TV in which they show off the trappings of power. Some cop does the dirty work for them & finds the perp - then calls Rizzoli. Don't worry ladies, they wore fabulous clothes before being called in to solve the crime in 8 minutes.

It isn't about drama, it isn't about thrilling the audience and it certainly isn't about the writing - it is about shoring up the psyche of those watching it.

Which is where that aforementioned gun commercial comes into play. Instead of exploiting femininity issues like Rizzoli & Isles, it is exploiting masculinity issues while pretending to pro-male. What Valenti is upset about is that feminists like her don't get decide what masculinity is from a social perspective. In her world, it revolves around what she wants men to do for her. Of course, in her narcissistic world, that is what men really want - to serve women. In the name of equality, of course.

Which is the issue. The facade of equality presented by feminists & women is little more than a power play. Men sense that. They retract, sometimes in a narcissistic way via video games or weed. However, men recognize the shrinking power of being male (especially a beta male) and acknowledge that it will limit their ability to get laid & find love. Women hyper-focus on male promiscuity in order to dodge that fact that many men are seeking love - that would completely comprise their approach.

Conclusion

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Rizzoli & Isles is a well-written show that clearly is targeting women. Despite that, the show is pretty good - and like "Castle" - much of the personal issues of the characters can be ignored in order to enjoy the show.

However, the show embodies the narcissistic approach modern media takes towards their female viewers. They know those women need wildly successful women in shows that will shore up their narcissism.

Part of that is to keep women in the demographic working hard at jobs that suck in order for those women to keep spending on things they don't need, in order to support a job they hate. Note that idea is common in male music, but not female music.

Female music is all about enjoying sex, spending money & "empowering" themselves through a job. They have taken like a duck to water to their social indoctrination. It shows how important socialization is to women; maybe that's why they often are social constructionists.

Male music is often expressing anger & discontentment. Often, though, it is about expressing love for a woman.

In any event, the modern woman is in a bad place. Soaked in the rain of narcissistic valuation, they offer up their social comportment as evidence of their sexual value.

Only to find out it does not matter.


RE: Rizzoli & Isles: Women Are Pawns In The Narcissistic Sexual Hierarchy - Ocelot - 07-03-2013 06:05 AM

Excellent stuff, as always.

Someone should remind Jessica Valenti:
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Look at that skyline. We need to talk about American masculinity.


RE: Rizzoli & Isles: Women Are Pawns In The Narcissistic Sexual Hierarchy - 2Wycked - 07-03-2013 05:07 PM

@Ocelot, that argument wiIl not fly with feminists.

Feminists will insert themselves into male success by proclaiming the reason men did all that is because they excluded women from doing that.

Of course, when presented with the opportunity in the
present day, they decline all sorts of jobs because they don't want to do them. Image maintenance kicks in, and women proclaim they just were not socialized the right way, otherwise they would want to be construction workers or plumbers.