Anchorwoman TV Poster Image

Anchorwoman

(i)

 

TV news goes diva in comedy/reality hybrid.

What parents need to know

Positive messages

Depends on how you look at it -- you could see the show as reinforcing sexist stereotypes about women, their appearance, and their abilities; or you could see it as a commentary on our sexist society.

Violence

Brief references to violence or tragedy in the course of delivering the news.

Sex

The star/main character dresses in tight, revealing clothes and behaves flirtatiously.

Language

Occasional "hell," "damn," or "crap."

Consumerism

The main character sports lots of fancy designer clothes.

Drinking, drugs, & smoking

Some social drinking.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that this reality/comedy hybrid focuses on a model/former beauty queen who wears tight, revealing clothing (most of it sporting high-end labels) and sometimes behaves in flirtatious and sexually provocative ways. The series both comments on and reinforces sexist stereotypes about women, their looks, and their professional capabilities. There's also some fairly mild language (of the "hell" and "ass" variety) and social drinking.

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What's the story?

Poking fun at the modern media's emphasis on infotainment -- as opposed to real news -- when it comes to TV broadcasts, ANCHORWOMAN captures a real-life news experiment: putting a model and former WWE diva in the anchor chair. This "comedy/reality hybrid" (as described by Fox) follows erstwhile Miss New York Lauren Jones as she heads to a mid-market TV station in Tyler, Texas, to deliver the news -- even though she has no journalistic experience. Naturally, her presence disturbs the real journalists at the station, especially reigning anchor Annalisa Petralia, who asks her boss if putting a swimsuit model next to her onscreen means that people will think of her as a swimsuit model, too.

Is it any good?

QUALITY

Ethical/journalistic issues like the aforementioned challenge Jones and her new co-workers, as well as Tyler's residents, some of whom feel insulted by the decision to further dumb down their news. In the midst of the controversy, Jones is hilarious as she tries to learn the ropes quickly, reverting to her tried-and-true winks and air kisses when signing off, only to be chastised by the news director, who's trying to salvage his dignity.

How much of Anchorwoman is scripted and how much is real remains a mystery. So while much of the reaction to Jones' presence is legitimate, the dialogue and truly hilarious moments are likely the mastermind of a writer. And, in a sort of post-modern twist, what seems like a commentary on the squalid state of TV journalism actually is an example of the squalid state of TV journalism.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about news and journalism. How has the way news is delivered changed over the last several years? What are teens' impressions of the current state of news and journalism? When people express their disappointment with the news media, do you think they mean TV news or all types of news, from print to radio to online? Do you expect TV anchors to be real journalists? Does this show alter or reinforce your feelings about the news?

TV details

Cast:Annalisa Petralia, Lauren Jones, Phil Hurley
Network:Fox
Genre:Reality TV
TV rating:TV-PG

This review of Anchorwoman was written by

Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are conducted by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.

Quality

Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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What parents and kids say

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Adult Written byladybug13 April 9, 2008
Adult Written byjskyroe April 9, 2008

I was disgusted

From what I've seen on the previews. I think this show is a insult to women reporters, and women in general. This should be aired on HBO. Not on a broadcast station.
Adult Written bynekkedtexas April 9, 2008

Beauty Queens Can't Be Smart?

For most people in East Texas having a national television show being produced in such a small place would be very exciting. Yeah right. Lauren Jones is not the typical frumpy East Texas housewife you will see at the local Walmart. She is the person for whom those housewives envy and whose husbands daydream about. She is from New York and she is beautiful. Not only is she a swimsuit model she is actually intelligent if you take the time to get to know her. Fortunately, I know whereof I speak. My 13 year-old daughter went to C.S.I. Summer Camp at Kilgore College. Lauren was the reporter sent over to cover the story. My daughter thought she was very sweet, personable, actually showed an interest in what they were learning as opposed to asking her "X-amount" of questions and leaving. If anything, I have had to restrain myself and do my research before sending a disgruntled email to Station Mgr/Director Phil Hurley. I have to say, I will watch the TV show, Anchorwoman and encourage others to as well...but I wont be watching the news at 5, 6, or 10.

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