Skepchick Quickies, 12.17


Jen is a writer and web designer/developer in Columbus, Ohio. She spends too much time on Twitter at @antiheroine.

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  1. So glad about the rom-com research. Not only do they cause unrealistic expectations of love, they provide unrealistic portrayals of Meg Ryan.

    If Meg Ryan is on the cover of any dvd or movie poster, I recommend destroying said item or picketing the movie theatre.

  2. The RU486 abortion pill is to be made available in Italy next month despite objections from the Vatican and the ruling centre Right, which described it as “legal back door abortion”.

    If it was legal wouldn’t that make it a front door abortion?

    Also I have a question for all you Brits, Last I heard women couldn’t get the birth control pill in Ireland, any word if that’s changed? I could ask the Irish contributors but, you know, I’d just rather not associate with their kind.

  3. Some Rom-coms aren’t so bad. “Forgetting Sarah Marshall” was most certainly a rom-com. Or a “bro-com” as they like to call it, but same fucking dif. And it was AWESOME! “40 Year Old Virgin” is a rom-com, too.

  4. I would just like to say I know the person who did the romantic comedy research. I have eaten Chinese food with her and her fiancée in their apartment, and played Timesplitters 2 with them. You may touch my robe now.

  5. Re: Santa –

    So who knew Old St. Nick was really Hiro Nakamura?


    Did you see that “Dracula’s Lament” from Forgetting Sarah Marshall has been longlisted for Best Original Song at the Oscars? I wasn’t TOO crazy about the movie, but that song was my favorite part and I hope it gets a nomination!

  6. @Expatria: Oh my Gosh, that’s awesome! Jason Segal wrote that (along with the movie itself). Jason Segal is freakin’ amazing.

    In an interview with WRIF Radio in Detroit, he stated the Dracula musical with puppets, as well as being broken up with while naked, were real experiences he wrote into the movie. Those cloth creatures were custom-made by the Henson puppeteers, and the experience emboldened Segel to pitch his concept for a Muppets movie.

    And he’ll be doing the new Muppets movie, which is freakin’ amazing.

  7. “quantum physical information wave”

    Isn’t that what Cdr. LaForge uses to reverse tachyon polarity? :–D

  8. From the rom-com article:

    Many held the view if someone is meant to be with you, then they should know what you want without you telling them.

    Ugh. I dated a guy like that once, it was awful. No pleasing those people.

  9. I like rom-coms, but I got my unrealistic view of life from Calvin and Hobbes. “I’m waiting for life to shower me with meaning and happiness.”

  10. I have stopped dating girls a couple of times becuase of their reaction to those f***ing movies. We would see it and they would tell me that that was the way love was supposed to be and then give me the look. At which point I would tell them I didn’t want to date them anymore. I hate those movies with a deep and abiding loathing.

    I’m not surprised that the santa article was written by a “scientist” from North Carolina.

  11. @marilove: I blame both, in my case it would be the women who can’t think for themselves and the movies that create and reinforce wildly unrealistic expectations of love. By no means are all women “one of those girls.” Nor are all men realisitc about love. But all that said. I hate those movies. Please tell me some that aren’t awful.

  12. I’ve always loved The Truth About Cats and Dogs, although I’d have liked it more if they kept the originally intended ending where the guy doesn’t forgive Abby for lying to him throughout the entire movie. Even with the square peg ending, though, I still love it.

  13. @Gabrielbrawley:

    Many of Woody Allen’s movies are technically romantic comedies, and most of them (or at least those from the ’70s and 80’s) are great. Annie Hall stands out, as do Manhattan and The Purple Rose of Cairo.

    As cliche as it may be, I have a soft spot for When Harry Met Sally. I also think that Bridget Jones’ Diary is entertaining enough for both women and men. And, of course, the afforementioned zom-rom-com Shaun of the Dead is wonderful in oh-so-many ways.

  14. @Gabrielbrawley: My makeup-wearing avatar guy? Teehee. :D It’s Eddie Izzard, silly!

    And romantic comedies that don’t suck: I mentioned them above, but Forgetting Sarah Marshall and 40 Year Old Virgin are both rom-coms. So is Superbad, for that matter. Not all rom-coms are cheesy.

    Also, yes, Annie Hall! Love that one.

    And Bridget Jones’ Diary isn’t bad, exactly, though I can’t get over the “OMG I AM SO FAT!” when she’s a freakin’ size 10. Yeah, totally fat.

    The Wedding Singer is another one!

    “and the movies that create and reinforce wildly unrealistic expectations of love.”

    And, really, you can say this about anything. I do think the media in general reinforces wildly unrealistic expectations of life. I mean, I’m a woman so I know this doubly so. Please see the size-10 Bridget Jones as being “fat.”

    Still, I wish people were more able to differentiate between reality and fiction. Of course, I shouldn’t really expect much, considering how many people believe in woo.

  15. Ooh Ooh! And There’s Something About Mary! I actually didn’t like that one nearly as much as everyone else did, but it was still pretty funny. Ooooh, The Mask! And Groundhog Day! I still love that one.

    All technically rom-coms, but still pretty great movies, or at least pretty decent.

  16. My son (a true skeptic) once told me that a science teacher at his school calculated that Santa would have to travel at 1000 miles per second to visit every house. I did a few calculations based on the energy to displace air at that rate and calculated that if he was burning coal to power his sleigh, he would burn about 100,000,000 tons per second. That is the equivalent of 200 MT of TNT per second.

    So if Santa did visit every house, the energy dissipation would turn the Northern hemisphere incandescent.

    I am divorced, and my children didn’t spend Christmas eve at my house, so while I was bringing them over on Christmas morning I warned them that “I did not hear Santa’s reindeer on the roof last night” leaving it ambiguous as to why I didn’t hear them. This upset my older son; because the tone of voice I was using made it sound as though I did expect to hear Santa’s reindeer, when he knew there was no such thing. When he called me on it, I said that what I said was the absolute truth, I did not hear Santa’s reindeer on the roof. Then he realized that he had been tricked by listening to my tone of voice and not to what I had actually said. A lesson in skeptical listening from his dad.

  17. “There’s Something About Mary” is a good movie, in theory. The concept and acting are great. The problem is that it’s loaded down with sight gags and fart jokes. If you edited out all that, you’d be left with a smart, funny, 45-minute movie.

  18. @Steve DeGroof: That’s exactly what I thought. I like some sight gags and fart jokes, if done right and not overkill, but man, was it ever overkill. And some of it WAS funny the first time around, but the second time around you’re like, “okay, not funny anymore!”

    And this is coming from someone who loves, loves “Bad Santa” — which, when you think about it, is a rom-com!

  19. @marilove: I know it’s Eddie Izzard, make up and all he still looks like a guy. A very, very funny guy. Rarely have I laughed so hard at standup delivered in classic latin. I really like him better in drag. Now that he is doing stand up in a blazzer and jeans something feels like it is missing.

  20. @Gabrielbrawley: A HAWT guy in makeup and heels! :D I think he was doing his stand-up in blazer and jeans (I actually saw him a few months ago!) because of The Riches — it was in his contract. They didn’t want to confuse people? Or something like that. I’ve heard The Riches wasn’t renewed :( :( so I won’t be surprised if he starts wearing drag more again. Though maybe he won’t, because I know he’s trying to do the “I am an actor, too!” thing right now.

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