I watch several sitcoms on a semi-regular basis. They are as follows:
(Yes, I admit to watching My Boys. It’s funny. I laughed out loud four times while watching this week’s episode.) I’m including SNL because it’s essentially a long sitcom, or many little sitcoms packed together.
I also watch some dramas on a regular basis. See below:
The numbers, as you might be able to tell, represent the number of major female characters who are minorities out of the total number of major female characters (currently) on those thows. Add them all up, and you get 2/38, or about 5%.
Why is almost every female lead Caucasian? Even if you pull blacks and Latinos into this survey, you’re only up to 6 out of 38. That seems far too few.
This really hit me recently while watching Scrubs and Better Off Ted back to back the other night. It’s like the same woman is being cast over and over again. Right now on Scrubs you have three blonde women as the leads–one doctor and two residents–and then two more blonde women on Better Off Ted.
Is that what studio execs think we want to see over and over again? Blonde women? Give us some variety!
I applaud The Office for having women of all shapes and sizes as the actresses. Pam definitely isn’t your average casting choice; neither are Phyllis or Kelli. But what about the other shows?
Is it simply because Asian women aren’t trying out for these shows? Are there 10,000 blondes in Hollywood trying to get a part, and only 5 Asians?
Why do I care? I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention that I’m attracted to Asian women. Lots of guys are. My girlfriend’s Egyptian. Are there no studio execs or casting directors with Asian fetishes out there?
But more importantly, I don’t like seeing the same thing over and over again on TV. Scrubs added two new residents this year–did they really have to pick two blonde women who look strikingly similar to the other blonde woman who is already on Scrubs? Why not add some variety to the people we look at for 22 minutes every week? I know for a fact that not every medical resident is a blonde–in fact, I’d say there’s a pretty high percentage of Asians and Indians in that field, from my experience.
Perhaps most importantly, why not add some diversity to television? Diversity isn’t just about black and white–it’s about Asian and Latino and Indian too.
I’ll close by thanking Battlestar Galactica for casting one Grace Park as one of its female leads, and Entourage for giving Emmanuelle Chriqui an ongoing part. I hope other shows take a cue from the ethnic variety those women provided.