Howdy howdy howdy! It's been a while, as I've been wandering the countryside much in the style of a Gypsy. Which is such a coincidence, because the first half of my post today is about Gypsies, or rather, the recent spike in Gypsy representation on television.
Full disclosure: I have some Gypsy in me. My great-great grandmother was all about Bohemia back when it was an actual place rather than something from a Rent song.
OK, OK, time to make a disclaimer before the Gypsy population of West Bushwick or wherever decides to flood this blog with complaints. (Edited to add disclaimer: Nothing in this blog is serious, except for the fact that shows about Gypsies exist. Oh, also the paragraph about mythologizing.) It's just weird because I've noticed a lot more Gypsies on TV than there used to be. Oh, and they prefer to be called Roma (because they roam-a around a lot! hahahaha!)
First was on House, in which a young Gypsy boy falls mysteriously, yet predictably ill, and his relatives stupidly, yet predictably fight House on his treatment. The boy's family are funkily dressed, vaguely ethnic weirdos who seem to have missed the boat on modern medicine despite living in suburban New Jersey. The father chews on toothpicks like a shady used car salesman and they all hate the boy's honky girlfriend. In fact, they refer to all honkies by a word I forgot - let's say it's Groosalug - that probably means "The Less Swarthy Ones Who Shall Not Be Named."
Now, on FX's new series The Riches, Eddie Izzard plays the patriarch of a Gypsy family that moves into some dead people's mansion and pretends its theirs. First of all, who knew there were so many Gypsies in the United States? I thought they were all flirting with Juliette Binoche in quaint French towns. Second, wouldn't a sweet manse like that go on the market right away, outting the squatters before they could say "American Dream"? Third, are Gypsies the new Little People? That is, a widely mythologized and misunderstood group of people for us normals to become fascinated with? If so, feel free to feature me in your new series, "Gypsies, Tramps, and Thieves," FOX Reality!
Another question on my mind lately is WWHBOD, that is, What Will HBO Do? In just a few months everyone's favorite curse-words-and-graphic-sex channel will be out of decent programs. They've axed Deadwood, Rome will end once Octavian becomes Emperor in two weeks, and The Sopranos - which has nose dived in quality anyway - will air its final nine episodes in May. After that, HBO doesn't have a leg to stand on, unless you consider Entourage a leg. (Which I don't. It's a trifle.) Deadwood's David Milch is currently developing a series called John from Cincinatti, which he describes as a "surf noir," and I describe as a "How? What? How?" I don't know, guys. Will the ol' Home Box Office get overpowered by Showtime or HBO Lite, as I like to call FX?
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