I'm from Jersey and i found it a very stupid show. James is right, these people do exist, almost exactly like they are in the show but that doesn't mean we should showcase or applaud their behavior.
I believe that the show celebrates the lowest common denominator for all Italian-Americans. Very similar to how an aspect of the hip-hop world mimics prison or gang culture... I.E. droopy pants (because in prison they are not allowed to have belts) or no shoelaces (again, prohibited in prison)... So with Italian americans, its gel in the hair and fake tans because that's how italian criminals are believed to look like.
I think jersey shore, cake boss as well as NJ housewives (which showcased an "Italian" flavor) is much more ominous than the sopranos, because the sopranos is advertised as fiction whereas reality shows are of real people (albeit scripted real people)
The solution... I'm not sure if there is one... but what we do here (promoting true links to the old country and rediscovering our lost Italian identity) is a great start
MauroMags wrote:I'm from Jersey and i found it a very stupid show. James is right, these people do exist, almost exactly like they are in the show but that doesn't mean we should showcase or applaud their behavior
ahh.. but watching idiots make fools of themselves has always been entertaining IMO.
The show is harmless.. there is a LOT worse stuff on TV, and I don't think for one second it's causing any sort of significant mis-perceptions at the expense of young Italian Americans. As a matter of fact not all of the cast members are even Italian (Snookie for example). Go to the Jersey shore one weekend, go to a 20something club and you are going to find a lot of the same "type" of kids your watching on that show. It's just the way it is, and ya know what? Someone at MTV thought that this kind of behavior would be entertaining to people. He was right.
aliza24 wrote:I think where the problem comes in is when you have people from areas where there isn't an Italian American population viewing a show like this.
Have any of you guys watched The Real World and some of the other similar "Reality" shows? You see similar behavior on all of these shows, it's just without the stereotypical Jersey/NY Accent so often associated with Italian americans.
It's part sensationalism (shock value) for popularity and part kids being kids in 2010. I wonder what percentage of the shows haters fall below the age of 25, I am sure it is pretty low (not saying they don't exist, but a great minority).
I have the thick NJ Jersey accent (that's what people tell me) and when iv'e been to other parts of the country, i often get "sopranos" comments thrown at me. So i do believe that italian stereotypes hinder italian americans that try to advance in politics, the business world, etc...
At 23 i got a job as an editorial assistant for a mid-level local newspaper with a circulation at the time of about 35,000, maybe more.... One day, the (irish) editor needed me to pass on a message to the circulation manager and a maintenance manager but since i was not aware of the hierarchy of the company just yet... he proceeded to relate the employees of the newspaper with characters (or ranks of characters) from the Godfather. In other words he said... Mr. so and so is in charge of circulation, he is like a caporegime and this guy is like the cconsigliere.
could you image if he did that sort of comparison with another ethnic group?
Hey Mauro. Im a fellow Jersey girl here. I have family with the last name Mauro. They are step family but I look at them as blood.
Anyhow, the people I know here that actually are from Italy and have only been here 10 years are the most appalled by the show. They feel it is disgraceful that the show portrays italians that way because they believe they are not Italian but American. Most people from italy dont think we are italian american but just american. They feel the show is a gross interpretation and I think it is. Granted all my family thats Italian is from NJ and NYC and I have many family members just like that cast. But it is not a true representation of Italian people and I can see how it angers people.
I'm not sure how anyone could find that show entertaining (but that's just my opinion). What I think is funny is that it probably wouldn't be OK to use so many stereotypes against another ethnic group.