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Archive for the ‘‘Til Death’ Category

Winter Preview: Rules of Engagement

Posted by Travis R Grant on January 18, 2007

This may sound like a repeat of my critic of ‘Til Death. However, I find it important to keep alive the discussion about media’s negative portrayal of marriage.

Rules of Engagement is a comical look at relationships primarily from the man’s perspective. To do this, they focus on a married man (Patrick Warburton), an engaged man (Oliver Hudson), and the single guy (David Spade).

The unfortunate thing is, that while this is advertised to be about relationships, the real story is that it is a put-down-marriage forum. When compared to ‘Til Death, this show is worse. At least in ‘Til Death it appears that Eddie and Joy are genuinely in love. However, in Rules of Engagement Jeff and Audrey (Megyn Price) seem to just barely get a long. And in the engaged couple, Adam appears to already be looking to get out of the commitment with Jennifer (Bianca Kajlich).

The only person who appears to be happy is the still single Russell, who it appears that Jeff and Adam aspire to be. However, their commitments are holding them down. The underlying message is that marriage is drudgery.

Looking at the cast, this will be a well done show. The only thing that would prevent it from staying on the air is if people don’t like it. I already don’t.

Media has too many negative messages about marriage. I don’t wish for television to portray marriage as all diamonds and roses, because it isn’t. However, I am tired of the many messages that say that marriage is nothing but animal waste and pits either, because it isn’t.

Media messages about marriage should be balanced. They should work to provide a varied taste of both the good and bad in marriage.

Another problem I have with this show is the overemphasis on sex. While sex is an important part of marriage, it should be respected more than it is on television. One of the problematic messages in this show is that married sex is terrible, and single sex is great. This is the wrong message for a society where sex leads to too much out of wedlock children and the issues of caring for children in two homes, and with the medical issues that are involved.

Before ending, I wish to clarify that I am not saying the ‘Til Death is a good show. I only use it as a comparison, and my preference for it over Rules of Engagement is only because there is slightly more positive messages about marriage.

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Fall Preview: ‘Til Death

Posted by Travis R Grant on August 23, 2006

I really struggle with comedies lately. It seems that the family comedy is almost completely extinct. When you turn on a proported family comedy it ends up being something that you wouldn’t watch with your children.

And I am afraid that Fox’s new comedy ‘Til Death, while not promoting itself as a family show, will ultimately prove to be a disappointment for me. The first clue is the name. With all the positive phrases to denote marriage, they had to pick a negative one.

While marriage is work and at times you aren’t sure if you can handle another minute with your spouse. There are wonderful times too. And while I wouldn’t want this show to sugar coat marriage, I just hope that it isn’t the bash on marriage show that it could digress to.

‘Til Death stars Brad Garrett as Eddie Stark who has been married to his wife Joy (Joely Fisher) for almost 24 years. And as with many marriages it has grown a little stale. The comedy is set when just next door a newly wed couple (Kat Foster and Eddie Kaye Thomas) moves in.

This juxtaposition of the new marriage and the old marriage is a great set up. The concept is fresh and unique. And the actors appear to be a great combination. I think this is a great next role for Brad Garrett. Ultimately, I predict that this will be a success.

However, it will end up being a disappointment in that too much humor will be made at the expense of marriage. This show could truly send the message that while marriage is hard, it can work and can be wonderful. However, I think it will send more of a message that marriage is just terrible and don’t bother; that the first few years of marriage are great, but after that it is just pure drudgery and not worth it.

I will probably watch a few episodes, and I will probably enjoy them. However, the negative messages will ultimately bring me to tuning out and finding a better way to spend my half hour.

Posted in 'Til Death, Comedy, Drama, Fall Preview 2006, Previews, Television, TV | Leave a Comment »