Comedy Central’s new show Secret Girlfriend portrays men as immature, sex-crazed idiots and documents their adventures in douchebaggery. It basically functions as training wheels for harder-core fare; the plot is weak, and the women exist only to look and act stereotypically sexy for the men.
What’s new, right? Well, there’s a twist: Secret Girlfriend gives us a literal interpretation of the misogynistic male gaze. The camera serves as the eyes of the main character, inviting the viewer to take on his perspective and jump into the story. The other characters talk to “you”, and you send texts back and forth, but you never actually speak.
You check out every woman in the show, as the camera pans from ass to breasts—after all, you’re a guy, so you don’t have the power to resist sizing up women in this way.
Of course, only conventionally hot, thin girls can be on this show, but the men are average-looking and overweight.
Women’s only valuable characteristic is their sex appeal; if they’re not
Maxim centerfold material, they might as well be invisible. In contrast, leading roles for men seem to go to whoever can execute lame jokes about genitalia and sound really pumped at all times.
I watched the first episode of Secret Girlfriend, and that was more than enough for me. I’ll detail the main events and save you the pain of actually watching it.
During this episode, we learn about two main women in your life: 1) Mandy: your psycho, sexy, brunette ex-girlfriend, and 2) Jessica: a new, blonde girl-next-door (in a Budweiser commercial kind of way).
Jessica says that she doesn’t mind when you choose to play video games and have pizza and beer on your first date instead of going somewhere nice. Totally possible—some girls like that stuff too.
But to show that she can really be “one of the guys”—although remaining very hot and looking feminine, of course—while playing the game (likely Grand Theft Auto), she yells, “Yeah, shoot the hooker in the face! Yeah bitch, eat it, eat it!”
This scene proves she really is cool and knows what chillin’ and being a dude is all about: drinking brewskies, eating greasy pizza, and playing a game where you get to perform acts of violence against women while verbally degrading them!
Another time, when you’re out eating sushi with Jessica and seemingly having a great time, you get a call from your bros, telling you to get to the strip club ASAP! You’re with this amazing girl on a date that is going wonderfully, but you’ve gotta follow the golden rule: bros before hos.
Plus, the ho you’re with is fully clothed and hasn’t put out yet, while there will be many hos at the strip club who are scantily clad or naked and eager to sell you lapdances. It’s a pretty clear choice for you. Factoring your date’s feelings into the equation would be waaaaay too hard.
Luckily, Jessica answers right after you hang up with a playful “you don’t even need to explain, just go!” response, because she’s more than happy to let you ditch her—she knows that she’s not that important to you, and accepts that your priority is to be at the most sexually enticing scene at all times.
You’re having a great time at the strip club—until Mandy comes in! She was doing some snooping because she expected that you were going there behind her back. Mandy tells you that she’s hurt that you’re at the strip club because it makes her feel like she isn’t enough for you.
That is an understandable feeling, though in this case it is coming from an ex-girlfriend with obvious issues, so the overall sentiment is really: “Chicks shouldn’t trip about you looking at other chicks take their clothes off, even if you are in an intimate relationship with them.”
Because your ex is not only crazy, but also sexy, her rational course of action is to remove her trench coat to reveal that she is wearing nothing but lingerie! As your “punishment” for going to the strip clubs behind her back, she is going to dance on stage in front of everyone, to show you what you can’t have anymore.
That’ll really put you in your place. I guess in guy dream world it would make perfect sense that women perform a striptease whenever they get mad at you. Therefore, the more of a jerk you are, the sexier she will act!
After her dance, Mandy approaches you and suddenly wants you again because she noticed you watching her when she was dancing on stage! You check out every woman, and that’s all that you have to do to get a woman to stop being mad at you: ogle her—no special attention, care, or conversation necessary.
So what have we learned from this episode? Secret Girlfriend delivers entertainment in the form of lowest common denominator humor, sexism, tired stereotypes, and overall stupidity. Is the show simply satire? Not likely–the tone is off. Is it the generic fantasy of the stereotypical, sexist frat boy? Perhaps. Does it reflect ideas that are marketable to a sizable portion of our population (young, heterosexual males)? Yes—the fact that it’s airing on Comedy Central tells me that it does.
It also tells me that there’s a whole new generation of prepubescent boys who don’t have quite the same grasp on reality as adults, and are learning to view and treat women as objects—worthless unless they look “hot”, and disposable even if they do—through watching this show.
Have you seen Secret Girlfriend? What do you think?
Take action! Let Comedy Central know how you feel about Secret Girlfriend:
Jenni Runyan Director
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