Friends and its “tragic hero, Ross Geller,” triggered the downfall of Western Civilization, writes David Hopkins on Medium.
“Ross was the intellectual and the romantic,” he writes. His so-called “friends” groaned with boredom whenever he talked “his interests, his studies, his ideas.” Eventually, Ross went crazy.
The show ended in 2004, the year that “reality television became a dominant force in pop culture,” writes Hopkins. Paris Hilton released an autobiography. Joey Tribbiani, Friends‘ dimwit actor, got a spin-off TV show.
Hopkins was a teacher that year. As coach of the chess club, he saw his students picked on and bullied, he writes. “My students were smart, huge nerds, and they were in hostile, unfriendly territory.”
I just saw The Martian on DVD. Matt Damon plays the hero astronaut, who uses his knowledge, strength and courage to survive. “I’m gonna have to science the shit out of this,” he pledges.
“The Martian glorifies a specifically male nerdery, one whose values sync up with those of traditional masculinity: physical endurance, survival in a hostile landscape, honor, adulation,” writes Katy Waldman in Slate. She complains because the brave and brainy female astronauts are also beautiful.
Is that so bad?