Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Media Moment: Transgender on Primetime

A few years back, NCIS, a CBS prime-time hit, aired an episode which ended with the team discovering that the suspect they were looking for made changes to his appearance. He went from a man to a woman, and was scheduled to complete his plastic surgery in his lower regions.

This episode ended with Tony, one of the agents serving under Agent Leroy Gethro Gibbs, was at a bar with Amanda (the transformed Lieutenant Commander Voss), and actually kissed her. When the rest of the agents figured out who Amanda was, Gibbs notified Tony and asked where she was, Tony said she was in the ladies room and Gibbs jokingly said, "Good. We can add that to the misdemeanor charges". Basically implying that she is a man and shouldn't be in the ladies restroom.

If you watch the video, there are many phrases that the agents say that show how they are confused if she is actually a man or woman.

After reading all of the articles this week for today's class, I was reminded how ignorant the media is and how people with dominant ideologies do not take transgender very serious.

Even on later episodes, they continue to refer back to this episode by saying "Tony tonged a guy".

here is the link to the episode: NCIS Transgender protrayal

1 comment:

  1. It's always upsetting to see a group of people used in the media as a comedic tool. We've seen it with gay people in the past, and now it appears it's happening with transgender people. This related directly to the articles we read this week, especially "Skirt Chasers" and "News Media Sucks..". In "Skirt Chasers," it related to the portion where the author discusses how the news media is only interested in trans women and their "ultra-feminine" appearance. In the "New Media Sucks..." article, the author talks about how the news media does not respect the trans gender community. I agree with this but I would like to add that the news media and the media in general do not understand the transgender community. Instances like this (in NCIS) would not take place if they did. If you understand and respect a group of people, you can not make they into a joke on television. Also, this episode that you were talking about is offensive to the gay community as well. The "Tony tonged a guy" comment makes me wonder, if Tony had in fact kissed a guy why would that be funny? Why are these cliche attempts at comedy still used when they are so offensive?