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Top 5 Reasons Why Spike TV Can Kiss My Sweet Ass

Spiketv Spike TV, a division of MTV Networks that has made itself synonymous with blood, beer, and babes, has staked out some strong territory in the American television market. Its violent and misogynist programming can be found piping bone-crunching, blood-letting UFC gore into bars across the continent to the cheers of the alcohol-steeped masses. Few stations have been able to garner so much free advertising to such a cognitively submissive crowd, and so it comes as no surprise that Spike TV and its online arm have muscled their way into 98 million homes.

If you are at all familiar with Spike TV, it will also come as no surprise to you that this makes me more than a little stabby.

Here are the top 5 reasons why Spike TV can kiss my sweet ass:

1. Spike TV deems actresses with impressive resumes such as Drew Barrymore, Renee Zellweger, and Cameron Diaz to be "past their expiration date". They are, respectively, "a chubby face attached to a chubby body", "not something most people care to spend too much time looking at", and "a worn-in baseball glove". Spike's main complaint? These women aren't as cute as they were when they were 20. Let me tell you something, Spike, and you might find this shocking: women have more of a purpose in film than to look cute and fuckable. There is a crazily wide spectrum of females' physical sizes, shapes, ages, and availabilities, and none of them have very much to do with you and whether you want to masturbate to them or not.

Drew_barrymore

2. I know that this one is an easy mark, because I could spend all day on Spike TV's treatment of women, but the section on their website called "Girls" isn't filled with girls at all. It is filled top to bottom with women in bikinis and corsets. WOMEN. It's no compliment to hold a woman up as beautiful to look at only to infantilize her with condescending language. The you're-hot-and-you're-even-hotter-when-I-talk-to-you-like-you're-ten thing is so very funny-uncle-child-molester, not to mention on the extreme end of icky.

3. Spike's doctrine that a) men are violent and b) women are for fucking... Oh, wait, the objectification of women lends to a rape culture in which women are dehumanized as sexual objects whose limited purposes are defined by perceived male sloth and avarice, so Spike's doctrine is simply that Men Are Violent. Just as women deserve better than to be fed a continual line of crap based on their genitalia, so do men. This does no one any justice.

Ufc

4. It's not that Spike TV online doesn't give equal space to women that bothers me. Today's stories in its "Movies" section roughly balance out to half being about men and half being about women. The thing, though, is that while they talk about men and their movie careers, Spike only stops long enough for Robin Wright Penn to mention that there is a spanking scene her new movie, "The Private Lives of Pippa Lee", and another article that strongly features women is really about sexy superpowers, amounting to fantasies of women being sexually flexible and irresistibly alluring and men being able to control women's minds for sexual purposes and being able to have orgies with multiple selves. Spike may give women space on their site, but only insofar as they serve the perceived limited male fantasies of violence and sex.

5. Spike TV, at least with its online extension, doesn't seem to like men or women. It normalizes and fetishizes both male aggression and female submission, neither of which do humanity a greater service. You could argue that Spike TV's mandate does not need to include a mission to do humanity a greater service, but with its reach into nearly 100 million homes and bars, conventionalizing and appealing to a base and numbing lack of human feeling bordering on sociopathic, I wonder at its value for anyone beyond its advertisers and the UFC fighters' insurance companies.

To hearken back to the spirit of our dear, ingenuous Kanye West when faced with great injustice: Spike TV hates all people. Let's take a round out of Spike TV and stop tuning in.







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Comments

Rachael Brownell

So well written and clever, SP.. Spike TV can now officially kiss MY ass too!

-Rachael

Sils

I've been anti-spike since I read an article by one of their people in Cosmo that urged women to put down their copies of Crime and Punishment because men don't want a brainy girl. Everyone got a letter after that one.

BaltimoreGal

YES. Thank you and I love you!

steff

Well said, Schmutzie! Couldn't agree more. Spike and their fanbase can go "eff" themselves, since I can't imagine any woman wanting to.

Friday

Fish in a barrel, that one. Glad it's not part of our BT package, if we even have it in this country.

Her Bad Mother

I love you. That is all.

cenobyte

"Spike's main complaint? These women aren't as cute as they were when they were 20."

I wonder how many of Spike's top executives are as cute as they were when they were 20. In fact, I wonder how many of Spike's primary target audience (men between the ages of 16 and 45) are as cute as they were when they were 20.

Probably five. That's my guess. And I'm also guessing that's because they ARE 20. And working in the mail-room. Because at 20, you're not quite ready for the Real World, which is why you're so cute. Something about the dilated pupils.

Good article.

Bruce

I'm sure you've nailed the Spike TV demographic and I feel fortunate that we don't have that channel in the UK. It's worth saying though that I am a massive fan of MMA (UFC) and I hate violence. It would take too long to explain what I mean, especially typing with one finger on an iPhone, but suffice to say that liking the UFC and misogyny don't always go hand in hand.

schmutzie

Bruce, I definitely meant to place UFC within the context of Spike TV's overall programming/message and not attack it on its own. I don't mind a bit of gore myself.

ms martyr

I was going to (kind of) come to Spike's defense for one show, but then I remembered Sons of Anarchy (Dallas on motorcycles) is on FX. So yay! I can agree with you 100%.

The Grown Up Teenager

Personally, I don't get what all the fuss is about. I watch Spike a heck of a lot. They carry some cool shows, like TNA Impact, UFC, Ultimate Fighter, CSI reruns, etc, and I'm not about to stop watching them because they sexualize girls.

I'm sure the females in the photos are perfectly okay with being called young, hot, sexy, etc by Spike. I'm also sure they don't like it when that changes but hey, that's life in show business. You're not young and hot at a certain point anymore.

Spike doesn't pretend to be classy TV. Their commercials make jokes about being an all men's channel, all the time. They show hot girls in bikinis. So what? Won't stop me from watching some good UFC action. And I'm a girl.

randi

First, I'm a girl.

I read somewhere that one of the executives of SpikeTV is actually a woman. http://www.thefrisky.com/post/246-the-woman-behind-spike-tv/

A lot of Spike's shows are for the 18-24 male demographic. They're about as mature as those boys are in real life!

I have to defend the UFC though. Those fighters are skilled beyond belief, and most of them are very well educated men. They are very disciplined and have mastered a craft. They are martial artists, not cockfighters.

schmutzie

The Grown Up Teenager and Randi, your mentioning other women being complicit makes no difference to my argument whatsoever. "There were other people with the same genitalia involved, so it must be okay! Or at least less heinous!" If some women happen to be involved in the oppression of women, it doesn't mean that that oppression isn't happening or is less oppressive. It just means that some women are involved.

The Grown Up Teenager

It always annoys me that as soon as there are some girls in bikinis, its "oppressive." Those girls aren't being oppressed. They're stripping down, showing off their bodies and making money off it. They're not underage, enslaved, or anything else that requires the word "oppressive." They posed, they wiggled their bikini clad ass at a camera. They're obviously down with all of it. Isn't that the definition of independent woman? Being allowed to do what one wants?

Its an interesting conundrum. Feminists can't stand a 20-something girl being called hot, or variations of the word, because oh no, it sexualizes her too much. But if they say someone doesn't look as good as she did when she was 20, that's an insult? Uh, that's a fact. Hi, 40 year olds. You don't look as good as you did when you were 20. Fact of LIFE. And if you're that age, and still dressing or acting like a 20 year old, you deserve to be called out for it.

That channel is very blatant in its marketing. Its being marketed to young guys, mostly single. They provide the two things that 99.9% of guys in their demographic like: TNA and T'n'A. That means they want young, hot, banging bodies, mixed in with some UFC, TNA, etc. So what?

Vegas710

@Teenager, I don't believe that a 20 year old is prettier than a 40 year old (most grown ups don't). But you go on ahead and keep swallowing what pop culture is feeding you.

kdiddy

Schmutzie, I agree with you, obviously, but something like this doesn't even bother me because it's so fucking stupid I can't even get it up to get offended. It's not that we don't need to keep resisting bullshit like this and calling it out when we see it, but I just don't have it in me anymore to get riled up about dudes showing and reveling in their utter idiocy. Sadly, it's to be expected to some degree.

That said, I get the feeling that the author of the Spike article has a lot of restraining orders out against him.




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