color: SOME SOLDIER'S MOM: "Over There"

Wednesday, July 27, 2005

"Over There"

A reminder that the premier of this fx network show is tonight... 10:00PM et/pt... (and I note at www.fxnetwork.com that it will also be shown at 11:00PM and a few more times this week...
When I first read about this show, I had no intention of watching it -- a little too close to home for me... But my son saw the promos for it while he was home on leave and when I asked whether he wanted me to record the shows for him he said, "Hell yeah!" He said the guys are interested in seeing them... to see how accurate the info is and to laugh at the stuff that isn't... And of course they want to know why the guy training the actors to be Army soldiers -- is a Marine? (That's what they'd heard...)
So I'll be watching... I'll be interested in some of the takes on this in the next few days...
UPDATE:
My friend Melinda (an Army wife) said: " My husband & I watched it. At twenty minutes past the hour, I looked at him and said, "well, now that they have run through every possible stereotype, what will they do for the next 40 minutes?" My husband spent most of his time pointing out inaccuracies or things that were too 'Hollywood'". And another Army wife said, "My husband watched this, thought it was cheesy, and unrealistic. He thought that was ok, because anything "too real" might not be great to watch."
So, Mel, they filled the other 40 minutes with gore and horror...

and yup... appeared to have covered all the bases:

white Columbia grad (but called "Dim" 'cause he's stupid enough to be in the Army anyway?),

poor white southern kid that needs money for college (but he loves the Army),

ghetto kid,

over the edge (Sgt. Screamer) NCO,

by the book (idiot) NCO,

paternal captain,

tough girl,

young mother,

doper...

covered everyone? what?? the Army is apparently composed of just 18-22 yr olds? no career, dedicated soldier from middle class America that actually felt a duty to serve? ok, maybe in episode 2... that's when I guess we'll also get to meet that psycho "nothing happens in my town unless I say it happens" Sgt. in #2 as shown in the previews? I can't wait (sigh). But I'm certainly glad they dumped on al-Jazeera...
I want to note here that the racial/age stereotype is a little skewed in the show... In my son's original platoon, the newest Sgt. was a white 23 year old, the Staff Sgt. and 1st Sgt. are 20 yr.+ veterans who are both African Americans, while most of the guys in his platoon are white 18-22 year olds (none are from the same state), 3 others are white 25-30 year olds, 1 is Hispanic (about 24) and 1 is black (late 20's). In his current platoon, his Sgt. is Hispanic and has 16 years of service... I'm not certain whether it reflects the entire Army, but it appeared to be an accurate reflection of his battalion...

I can't say whether the battlefield depictions are accurate, I'll leave that for the vets to say... I'll give it another episode or two. I'm really more interested in the character development and how they portray our soldiers and the situations of which we are already aware -- I picked up the references to Abu Ghraib... and the shooting from the mosque... and the needing permission to return fire which may have been less than accurate, but also the references to incident reports and the paperwork when gunfire is exchanged...
My only other comment is that the theme song SUCKED. terrible. mothers are crying? fathers are sighing? what the hell is that? the ABCs of rhymin' simon? they should sh*tcan it and find something better. I think they were going for the "Suicide is Painless" (M.A.S.H.) feel but missed entirely. the words are imbecilic and the music unmemorable. awful.
Copyright 2005. All rights reserved.

6 Comments:

At 7/27/2005 9:12 PM , Blogger Army Wife said...

my husband watched this, thought it was cheesy, and unrealistic. He thought that was ok, because anything "to real" might not be great to watch.

 
At 7/27/2005 9:53 PM , Blogger Melinda said...

My husband & I watched it. At twenty minutes past the hour, I looked at him and said, "well, now that they have run through every possible stereotype, what will they do for the next 40 minutes?"

My husband spent most of his time pointing out inaccuracies or things that were too 'Hollywood'.

I'll be interested to see what others have to say.

 
At 7/28/2005 1:24 AM , Blogger Shannon said...

Melinda, husband and I thought the same thing. And of course, at the end, we had the wife back home cheating on her husband to round out the stereotyping...

It's apparent the show thinks little of women. The couple in the beginning - sorry, but that is the last thing on our minds when he's leaving...we're both very upset at being separated and not trying to "break in" every room. MUCH LESS even consider acting in that manner IN FRONT OF OUR CHILDREN!!! I was completely disgusted they had to throw a child into a scene that shouldn't have been in the pilot to begin with.

Then the female soldier who can't even dig a hole in SAND...yeah, all female soldiers are a nuisance to the men who must take care of them (rolling eyes here). Then the wife cheating at the end of the show...

Damn, us women who join or marry military personnel - well, we're all a bunch of low-life's I guess.

The show sucked. The theme song sucked and the plot sucked. How many sunrises did these soldiers see fighting off 20 insurgents in a mosque? The rules of engagement are clear - great "military advisors" on this show.

Just another wonderful way Hollywood can make sure that Americans view our military (and their families) in a poor light. There can be no heroes in this day and age you know...unless said "hero" is an antiwar protestor (there I go, rolling eyes again).

 
At 7/28/2005 5:39 AM , Blogger Stacy said...

IT SUCKED. I DID NOT LIKE IT. SORRY, JUST ONE PROUD SOUTHERN GAL'S OPINION. THE THEME SONG WAS AWFUL.

 
At 7/28/2005 8:13 AM , Blogger Erik Holtan said...

I didn't see the previews for it!
Too bad, wold like to watch it!

 
At 7/29/2005 3:51 AM , Blogger Call Me Grandma said...

I watched it trying to get a feel of what my son is going through. I think it failed. The whole time I was watching it, I kept saying to myself why am I watching this. It had to much gore...but then maybe war does. I don't know?

 

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