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That's What She Said

Geena Davis on I Dream of Jeannie and Bewitched

[Davis noted] that the bulk of those shows was spent on the men trying to stop the women from using their magical powers.

“This happened in several of my marriages,” Davis said wryly.Geena Davis on Denver Business Journal

Geena Davis was interviewed recently regarding her efforts (through her career and otherwise) to push back against gender stereotyping in media. I Dream of Jeannie and Bewitched came up alongside Davis’ recollections of television and movies from her childhood, and how the average ratio of male to female characters in films has remained the same since 1946: four or five men for every woman. You can read the whole interview at the DBJ.

(via Jezebel.)

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  • Mike

    ONTD don’t do interviews, it’s a content aggregate. The proper sources are at the bottom of the ONTD post. She gave a great talk/interview though.

  • Mark Matson

    Of all the various reboots, why haven’t we seen I Dream of Jeannie? Remember, Jeannie was from Bagdad and probably Muslim. As opposed to all the other reboots, this one could potentially be relevant today. Imagine an Iraqi vet brought home a bottle.

  • Anonymous

    My bad. Post has been fixed.

  • electrasteph

    Because the gender inequalities on that show were pretty pronounced, and the basic premise of the show is problematic and would get a lot of push back from women today.

  • Anonymous

    It’s an interesting view point on it.

    I really just saw it as a way to easily have both crazy things happen and create conflict on the show.

    Really isn’t the plot of any tv show where people have magic and/or super powers about the main character hiding the powers?

  • Anonymous

    And feminists of all genders. I think we can move past those really antiquated shows. Could it be done in a completely different way that changes the relationships? Sure, but why bother? Also how much really would that be a reboot and not something completely new?

  • Mark Matson

    Gender inequality was pretty pronounced in the original Battlestar Galactica as well. Sure, not as pronounced as I Dream of Jeannie, but the point is reboots are not bound to the problems of the original.

    The whole reason why I think this reboot would be more interesting than others is *because* it opens a vehicle all these interesting questions, like our relationship with the Middle East, terrorism, illegal immigration, gender roles both here and and Muslim countries, and so on.

    While I fully admit that a real reboot would probably ignore all that, the one I’d want would have tons of interesting material to dive into. Sitcoms have tackled real issues before, it could be done again. A reboot of an old favorite might be exactly the kind show that could get away with discussing these topics without turning off viewers and low ratings.

  • Engler Pascal

    Well, as far as i remember Buffy didn’t really bother (or at least didn’t put much effort in) to hide her powers as soon as her Mother knew about her destiny.
    Neither do superheroes in ‘verses where metahumans are publicly known to exist. (DCAU, Young Justice or the later Smallville seasons). Granted they still try to hide their identity from civilians they are not related to.

    Hmm, but i don’t know of any example where the protagonist doesn’t really bother from the beginning with concealing herhis power or his identity. Yusuke Urameshi from Yuyu Hakusho maybe?

  • Jerilyn Nighy

    Pretty sure Major Nelson didn’t care if Jeannie used her powers. Now, Daren was the neurotic control freak, toward Samantha.