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October 10, 2015

The Battle of the Sexes: Men vs. Women in the 2011-2012 TV Season

by Maggie Furlong, posted Aug 11th 2011 12:00PM
Are TV viewers too dumb to decide which shows they're supposed to be watching? Apparently the broadcast TV networks think so.

With lineups that include an astounding number of gender-specific titles for the 2011-2012 season, it's starting to feel like the battle of the sexes is waging a new war on primetime TV.

It's as if the networks are sending out a loud and clear message to their audiences on both sides of the gender pool. Men: You should only be watching shows with the word "man" or some variation of that word in the title! And women: Don't mind the number of shows that had the word b*tch in the title (two: 'G.C.B.' and 'Apartment 23') -- we've changed them to be more female-friendly so you'll feel comfortable tuning in!

Curious how cross-gender, multi-sexual and downright all-inclusive these new un-sexily sex-titled shows are? We've judged and ranked them on a Sexist-o-Meter scale of 1-10, 1 being pretty inoffensive, and 10 being circa-1985 levels of shocking close-mindedness.

Let's take a look ...

2 Broke Girls'2 Broke Girls' (CBS)
They're girls. And they're broke. Sounds like the ultimate ladies-in-peril-needing-saving-from-men storyline, but luckily it isn't. Sure this show could've benefited from a more clever title, but the two female leads are more empowered women than helpless idiots.

Sexist-o-Meter ranking: 1

Last Man Standing'Last Man Standing' (ABC)
Gay jokes, the doldrums of being a stay-at-home dad, the overt need for anything outdoorsy or even remotely tough-guy approved ... Tim Allen's latest comedy milks very few laughs, and they're always at someone else's expense. With an obnoxious laugh track in place, the only thing missing here is the famously manly grunts of Tim "The Tool Man" Taylor.

Sexist-o-Meter ranking: 10

New Girl'New Girl' (Fox)
Let it be said that Zooey Deschanel is adorable, and we can't wait to have her on our TVs (that's not sexist, it's merely fact). We just wish her 'New Girl' character was a little stronger post-breakup, when we meet her in the pilot. Also, can we move past the notion that she's not hot because she wears glasses? This isn't 4th grade recess.

Sexist-o-Meter ranking: 3

The Playboy Club'The Playboy Club' (NBC)
Working for Hugh Hefner's Playboy Club was empowering for women in the '60s ... or so they'd like you to believe. I'm sorry, but I'm with Gloria Steinem here: a skimpy costume, weight and fitness regulations, secret back rooms and bunny tails do not read privilege to me. I think the correct word is exploitation. But as the name says, it's about the boys at play while the women slave away.

Sexist-o-Meter ranking: 10

A Gifted Man'A Gifted Man' (CBS)
Patrick Wilson isn't playing just any man you guys -- he's gifted! Yes, this high-powered, workaholic surgeon can do it all, including talk to his dead ex-wife. I guess this title is better than 'He Sees Dead People,' though. Or is it?

Sexist-o-Meter ranking: 2

Man Up'Man Up' (ABC)
This title says one thing to me: Don't be a wuss, guys -- man up! Lucky for all involved, the manliness of this pilot wasn't really that in your face. It's just a couple of average dudes playing video games, showing off on the basketball court and defending their ladies' honor with fist fighting.

Sexist-o-Meter ranking: 4

G.C.B.'G.C.B.' (ABC)
Short for 'Good Christian Belles' (or 'B*tches,' depending on which of the former titles you prefer), the ladies in this primetime soap all seem to rely on the men in their life to finance their Texas-sized wardrobes and larger-than-life shopping habits, which is unfortunate. And the one whose husband is out of the picture resorts to working at a 'Hooters'-esque establishment to make ends meet. Not unforgivable, but a little too easy.

Sexist-o-Meter ranking: 5

How to Be a Gentleman'How to be a Gentleman' (CBS)
Gentlemen, we have a message for you, too: This show will not only introduce you to multiple spineless men, it'll also pound those men to a douchey pulp when their politeness and manners are overpowered by a gym rat neanderthal who spouts his own brand of "wisdom." Stereotypes at their most exaggerated.

Sexist-o-Meter ranking: 9

I Hate My Teenage Daughter'I Hate My Teenage Daughter' (Fox)
You think grown women are a handful? Try teenage girls! This show pairs two moms against their two bratty daughters for the ultimate women-hating-women showdown. Personally I can't wait until there's a fight over push-up bras and mango-flavored lip gloss. Women love that stuff.

Sexist-o-Meter ranking: 6

Whitney'Whitney' (NBC) / 'Allen Gregory' (Fox) / 'Napoleon Dynamite' (Fox)
Who are these shows about? We can't be trusted to figure that out on our own, people. We realize that character names as titles have been around forever -- 'Seinfeld,' 'Frasier,' 'Laverne and Shirley' -- but this new crop just seems to scream "Look at me! I'm the star!" Oh you mean you on the billboard and bus ads? Well thank god you told us.

Sexist-o-Meter ranking: 0 (but we're still not stupid, dammit!)

And, while we're at it, mad props to these gender-neutral titles that aren't choosing sides ... well, not really. Who are they aimed at? And what are their secret sexist twists? Guess we'll have to watch and see!

Person of Interest'Person of Interest' (CBS)
It could be any person targeted from week to week, and that's what's truly interesting about this series. Even with its male-dominated cast.

Sexist twist: How come the only lady here (Taraji P. Henson as homicide Det. Carter) always seems to be leaps and bounds behind the men she's chasing?

Prime Suspect'Prime Suspect' (NBC)
At the heart of this cop drama with a lady boss (Maria Bello) are the interesting cases. Now if the subordinate men on the force will just stop holding the boss' beauty and boobs against her, they'll have a drama worth investing in.

Sexist twist: Bello's Det. Jane Timoney really is pretty overbearing. We're hoping they'll figure out how to soften her edges a bit -- fast -- a la Helen Mirren's award-winning portrayal in the original British series.

The Finder'The Finder' (Fox)
Who are they finding? And why are they so good at finding them? We don't know, but Geoff Stults endearingly leads the diverse cast of this 'Bones' spinoff, which was luckily not titled 'The Finder Man.'

Sexist twist: Get ready for more shirtless Geoff Stults than you ever thought you'd ever wanted!

What do you think of all these sex-skewing shows? Men, are you turned off by the lady titles, and women, will you tune in for the guy-geared programming?

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Windwalker Oldwolf

"Sexist twist: Get ready for more shirtless Geoff Stults than you ever thought you'd ever wanted!" This from a woman who is writing about sexist tv shows and even has her sexist meter? *roflmao* Let me break out my hypoctrite meter there Ms. Maggie. With that comment and several of the other "beefcake" shows that didnt make your list,it isnt any different than the playboy club. Equality means just that..equal...as in treated exactly the same with the same rules. So when you dont drop on the beefcake/eye candy shows for girls....its rather pathetic and shows a double standard. When Twilight first came out,there were "mothers for twilight" drooling over the 17 year old shirtless guys. If a bunch of guys in their late 30's and early 40's showed up to a movie and acted as such,much of the media would have had a feild day and tossed out the sexism card. Its the 21st century and supposedly a time of equality. That means sexism cust both ways. So please shut your female chauvanisist sexist sows hole please. And before you get upset with the comment..it isnt no different than the male chauvanistic sexist pig comment. Its called equality...welcome to a world that is attempting to be equal..IM just doing my part.

September 12 2011 at 7:25 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
Jimmy TheFish

Is Nikita a sexist show i dont know it has girl power, most of hte men are useless and the women are all super soldiers, but who cares I enjoy watching it anyway (its probably somehow "sexist against women"). How about Castle the women wears the pants in that relationship but still a good show.

I have a big problem with militant feminists who are nothing more than female supremacists. It might have made sense when they couldnt vote or whatever but today its pretty equal, and yet we still see them hammering on about the evil men is downright retarded

September 12 2011 at 3:08 AM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
Jimmy TheFish

Most of those shows look like **** anyway, I dont care about them being "sexist" or not.

September 12 2011 at 2:42 AM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

Sorry, one more thing -- this article is that bad I feel the need to argue. This line is moronic -- "Tim Allen's latest comedy milks very few laughs, and they're always at someone else's expense." WHAT DO YOU THINK COMEDY IS? All JOKES ARE AT SOMEONES EXPENSE. That is why they are called JOKES -- there is always a butt to them. Unless you are just making fun of yourself (self deprecation) then everything is at someone else's expense. This writer doesn't know anything about comedy and how it works. F- for this article.

August 17 2011 at 5:45 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

This article sucks. Just because shows are geared toward a certain gender does not make them sexist or bad. So because Tim Allan does stereotypical manly things it makes this show sexist? That's insane. Does that make Glee sexist because its fanbase mostly caters to females? I don't know one straight guy that likes that show -- but that doesnt make it sexist, it's just appealing to a certain audience. Men and woman (in general) are into different kinds of TV and there is nothing wrong with that!

August 17 2011 at 5:26 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
M Graddy

I question the accuracy of the "sexist-o-meter" and the article in general -- apparently, a woman's opinion decides what's sexist -- LOL! Since the way-too-old Miss Steinem was channeled yet again, the slant of this drivel is pretty obvious.

August 15 2011 at 2:54 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

WOW! This will show how low the mentality of the average voter is if any of these survive the season.

August 15 2011 at 10:18 AM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

More inane bs

August 14 2011 at 2:48 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

I like the new programming. Women spend millions of dollars every year trying to look sexy so now homage is being paid to these ladies for their efforts. I as a hetrosexual man have to endure the movies on the movie channels that play to gay people and I dont care what your sexual preference is but dont stand on a soap box and shout it. The majority should still rule here and most of us prefer not to have to endure these movies. But for that matter I have a great deal of difficulty with the liberal movies that try to make a statement such as Michael Moore trash and even those with subtle ineundos. But a good old sexy movie is always good!

August 13 2011 at 7:08 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
2 replies to parthenon1's comment

If you want to watch a movie for sex, go see a porno. Watching a normal movie for sex fantasies ruins the Hollywood demand market perspective and movies of any value (ie...plot, acting, and script) are rarely pursued. Shame! Thus, we end up with "Tomb Raiders" etc...and dainty slight women overpowering big men. Basically, cartoonland.

August 13 2011 at 7:31 PM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down Reply

Why do you have to "endure" movies you're not interested in? Just change the channel or don't watch the movie. Other people who want to watch will & those that don't won't. It's not that big of a deal.

August 13 2011 at 8:54 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

I'm with Elizabeth on this one. It would be like watching Mrs. Obama change clothes.

August 13 2011 at 6:57 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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