Wednesday, 2 December 2015

Sexuality in TV Dramas

Gay Couple in the TV drama, 'Teen Wolf' - Ethan and Danny // American TV Drama:

This is a scene from an early episode in 'Teen Wolf' season 3. In this season Ethan and Aiden (the twins spotted by Danny) are new to Beacon Hills high school, so they're catching an eye for all the students anyway. This clip demonstrates the introduction of sparks between the characters of Danny (the guy who has the focus of the camera angle) and Ethan (the twin who is in the fore front of the long shot) that are created from the start.

There is a usage of music added to the clip, which means it is non diegetic sound. This is music we as an audience can hear, but the characters cannot and this could reflect the fact that the characters are oblivious to the fact that there is a connection begging, as they are acting as innocently as looking at each other, but for fans of the show a budding new romance has been conjured up by the producers and therefore fast paced music is there to add power and tension. It gets the audience excited, as the music track has hints of 'sexy' coming from it.

The music stops at 0.08 seconds and this is because, once Danny has realized that Jackson (the student next to him) has noticed him 'checking Ethan out', the situation becomes awkward rather than exciting.

Whilst the music is playing a series of turn taking in camera angles is made. Each character gets a close up shot of their reaction to what it going on. Everyone's is a little different and that is why humor is bought into the short clip also. This could reflect the view the producers have on homosexuals. They could see gays as a product of humour and abnormality. It could be seen as an odd relationship to characters like Jackson who is in a heterosexual relationship. 'Teen Wolf' and TV dramas as a whole have a dominant ideology that a male and female should be together and this relationship between Danny and Ethan is different for the show.

The 'oddness' to this whole situation is shown by the facial expressions that Jackson portrays. As a character in the show, Jackson is aware of Danny's homosexuality; however there has never been another main gay character on the show, therefore he has never theoretically been in a relationship with another guy and it be a big story line. Introducing the fact of the two characters ending up together is shown as a little strange for the other characters in 'Teen Wolf'.

Once the music has ended. Dialogue is shown when Jackson confronts Danny about Ethan. He says: "Got a little crush going on there?". When Jackson asks this, we can tell he feels awkward and embarrassed at the fact he is asking a boy, if he likes a boy. Danny feels awkward about the situation too as he says: 'No!', whilst shaking his head and shuffling in his seat. Jackson then tries to lighten the mood by pulling a sarcastic facial expression. He does this to make Danny, maybe feel more comfortable about talking about it and it shows his acceptance as a character to be for homosexuality. If not, the TV drama could be at risk of getting hate towards the characters opinions of issues as strong as homosexuality. Also, some viewers could been offended.

The fact that the clip is very short, could show the awkwardness of all the characters involved. A heterosexual relationship begging to blossom, for example, would take a longer time to blossom. This is because the male and female being together is more accepted in society today, as the 'norm'. In media terms, this is the dominant ideology for all media products. Comparing it probably, would mean comparing it to a dominant ideology couple from ''Teen Wolf'. So taking Scoot and Allison, for example, there relationship was looked upon as much more 'loving' than 'sexy'.

We see a clip of when they both begin to 'fancy' each-other underneath the clip of Danny and Ethan.

 This is seen as a more 'normal' way of two people falling in love... The scene promote mystery, romance and the whole connect of 'falling for each other'. This is because it is the dominant ideology that a man and women are seen as 'normal'. When gay couple fall in love it is more secretive and hidden away, because it is known that some people, or in this case characters in TV dramas - will not actually agree with it.

Lesbian Couple in the TV drama, 'Pretty Little Liars' - Emily and Alison // American TV Drama:

The dominant ideology of a lesbian couple of a TV drama would be that there is a partner in the relationship who takes on the more dominant role. So, one person in the relationship would stereo-typically 'wear the trousers' and act as a more masculine figure, whilst the other partner promotes her feminine side and acts to the stereotype  of the female in TV drama. In this relationship, I personally believe that Emily takes on the 'male' and 'dominant' lead.. only when she becomes much wiser to her situation. She is the lesbian, who has told everyone and is happy to let people know of her sexuality. This makes her more powerful as her sexuality is known to the public, whereas Alison has to hide her lesbian identity and she acts heterosexual to the rest of the characters. Emily then has the power over her as she doesn't theoretically have to 'hide' anything from society.

In the clip below, we see Emily acting as the dominant one in the relationship. She does this at
0.40. Both times the couple hug, Emily goes in for the hug first. This shows she is willing to give physical affection towards Alison in front of the rest of her friends. Emily then stops Alison from going onto the bus she tries to get on at 0.52. Alison is on a higher level than Emily and she uses her dominance to bring Alison down back to the same level she is on, in order to demand the control. Their relationship isn't controlling - it is just frustrating for the couple, as they have to hide it.

At 1.10, Alison is crying.. we are guessing over something Emily has done. This shows Emily has control over her emotions. Alison is pictured in her bedroom through a long shot. The bedroom being a place personal to the being - proving that the issue is personal and close to her heart, which is why she is crying. Putting Alison in the situation where she has to text Emily at 1.20 minutes, means Alison must do the chasing. At 1.50, Alison is on a lower level than Emily again. She is sitting on the bed talking up to Emily, which proves that Emily has the dominance and decision whether or not to walk away. The whole clip shows times where Emily gets to pick and choose what happens to the couple. Mainly for the fact that Alison is hiding her sexuality, but also, because she is the male figure in the relationship. Alison receives the male gaze, because of her stereotype of a women: long blonde hair, makeup, jewellery etc.

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