I’ve been a Joe Queenan fan since reading If you’re talking to me, your career must be in trouble. But I love him a bit more after reading his column on the misogyny of the film Knocked Up and other “rom coms” in the same vein.
Just in case you’ve not seen it, the film is about a TV presenter who has a one night stand, and gets pregnant when the bloke she sleeps with decides not to use that condom afterall. And he’s meant to be the affable hero. Nice, eh?
In today’s Guardian, Queenan pokes a massive hole in the illusion that these are tales “of a loser ultimately saved by the love of a good woman – a good woman, naturally, endowed with a stunning rack”. The rightful interpretation goes something like this:
There is, of course, another way of looking at this subject: that the new genre of romantic comedies are not really upbeat, coming-of-age motion pictures about young male schmucks who are saved by the love of a good woman, but heart-rending tragedies about beautiful young women who are doomed to spend the rest of their lives with juvenile, not especially good-looking dorks.
I also agree with this assessment:
What distinguishes these films from High Fidelity, another motion picture about the excruciating process of putting one’s pathetic male friends into cold storage and getting serious about a romantic liaison – and sometimes blamed for having kickstarted the genre – is that John Cusack is not a loser dork. At least his long-suffering girlfriend gets something out of the relationship.
Go read the whole thing. And then Queenan’s entire back catalogue.