|Is new TV show right about college?|
|Written by Drew Zimmerman, Columnist|
|Monday, 02 July 2012 17:27|
Hollywood bad boy Charlie Sheen’s newest sitcom, “Anger Management,” debuted on FX last Thursday with great reviews and cable TV records.
Sheen may have succeeded, but according to one of the subplots in the series premiere, is it really college students who are ultimately “winning”?
In the hour-long premiere, we see Sheen, in typical tiger-blooded behavior, rip a lamp out of the wall and almost attack a character, played by Brian Austin Green, who told Sheen’s character’s daughter that college was not important based on factors such as student debts and graduate unemployment.
Certainly the goal of “Anger Management,” or any Charlie Sheen comedic effort for that matter, is not to provide sound career advice. Therefore, is there really any truth to this farcical tirade?
New research suggests that college students may not be as well off as they think post-graduation. According to an article from Investor’s Business Daily, the number of jobless workers, age 25 and up, who have attended some college now exceeds the ranks of those who settled for a high school diploma or less for the first time in history.
Approximately 4.7 million people out of the 9 million people unemployed in April went to college, which is a shift of over 2 million since 1982.
Perhaps Green was onto something.
Mostly, this shift may be due to demographic shifts, according to IBD. Older Americans, who less than likely attended college, are exiting the workforce, which changes figures.
Because of this increase in unemployment, student’s debts go unpaid. Over $1 trillion is owed in student loans across the nation, according to an article from The Lantern. But accounting for student loans and debt has always been a factor in choosing the right college.
Regardless, should we really take to heart what a TV sitcom was trying to tell us? Did watching “Seinfeld” change how anyone ordered soup at a restaurant? Did watching “Home Improvement” make us think twice about ordering an appliance with ‘more power’? Did watching “Two and a Half Men” make us come to the realization that it is not sound career advice to tell off your boss and publicly admit that you are high on a drug that has the same name as yourself?
The fact of the matter is that it is comedy. The minute we start to dissect it is the minute we no longer find it funny. I’ve done stand-up comedy for a few months now and I’ve definitely noticed that the jokes I write that require no deeper understanding from the audience are often the best. When I make a joke that forces the audience to reason it out, I know that I’ve lost them.
Although we can’t take comedy to heart, we have to acknowledge the subject matter. Sometimes the things people make jokes about are the things we fail to understand. I love political humor because I don’t know any better. Ignorance is bliss after all.
I’m not saying that we should research every joke we hear on “Anger Management,” but we should make sure that we are laughing because we know the whole story behind the joke. In this case, landing a job is no longer easy for graduates, but we should be doing something about it instead of laughing. We should do something about it because we are laughing.