Why I hated Trainwreck (or time to re-write the rom-com)

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I was so looking forward to seeing Trainwreck. I’d seen the shorts and it seemed like it may have a different take on the rom-com. It looked like it could show a woman who was slutty, wild and having a shitload of fun…sort of like men are regularly portrayed. I thought Amy Schumer could be the one to do this, take it up a step, take the Hollywood rom-com to where it needed to go.

But no, I was wrong and I was very disappointed. It did what rom-coms do so [cough] well: show a slutty, out of control girl who can only find happiness in the form of a “good” man. I know rom-coms do the reverse as well but I’m kind of sick of it. Is it not time to look at relationships differently? To examine other possibilities for how it could all be done?

I certainly don’t have the answers. I’m old and have grown up to be conditioned for the one man, one woman, eternal love, eternal happiness, blah blah blah, bullshit bullshit. It’s not that I’m a negative nelly or just plain old bitter and twisted (well, a little of both actually). I’m talking about the reality of my own life and the lives of most people I know, I’m talking about the news and social media and Ashley Madison.

Monogamy is a lovely ideal but I have come to believe that serial monogamy is truly the best we can hope for. We have all been socialised to believe monogamy is how the world works and how relationships should work. But it has historic and sociological roots (pardon the pun) related to “ownership” of children, descendants, estates, etc. All the moral stuff is just tied up to the ownership of women, children and real estate. Nothing more, nothing less. Love and romance have just been overlayed onto that bleak reality to make it a prettier, more palatable package.

So as a 47 year old, twice divorced single mother I know there isn’t much hope for me to truly live by a different model. I still yearn for that “my one and only true love” crappola. My logical self wishes it was otherwise because it’s really not got me very far but it’s been hammered into my DNA. I don’t know how to think in a different way.

But I would like for my children to grow up thinking about things in a different way. To value themselves as individuals and not crave the love of another person to validate them. To have sex with as many or as few people as they want to and not feel that makes them a good or a bad person. Just a person.

Getting back to Trainwreck. Having seen some of Amy’s comedy I thought she may have the skill set to take things up a notch on the rom-com. Take the slutty girl and make her the hero. But she did no such thing. She took the slutty girl, shamed the fuck out of her and gifted her with “happiness” in the form of Mr Dullsville. That’s right slutty, drunk girl… clean up your act, douche the old vag and you might be worthy of being Mrs Doctor and have the house in the burbs and the 2.3 kids and the Volvo… because fuck knows there’s no other way of being happy.

I’m not sure if she actually wrote something edgier and it was watered down by the Hollywood powers that be or if she’s really just wanting a piece of the Hollywood pie and beige is good enough. Either way it’s kind of sad and kind of a waste of time.

One thought on “Why I hated Trainwreck (or time to re-write the rom-com)

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