Tuesday, 24 March 2015

Patricia Arquette of CSI: Cyber—Fat Because of Soda?

Patricia Arquette of CSI: Cyber—Fat Because of Soda?

(Nothing important to read here, folks, so just move along, move along.  Only rambling, but felt like jotting down something that was on my mind. . .people do such things on blogs. . . .)

Standing in line at the grocery store staring at celeb gossip magazines earlier today.  Prince William may be losing his hair, or something else, maybe.  Already did write a post about Martin Short’s craven advertising for life-shortening products.  Watched a ‘sode of this new CSI show on the computer, the second one I’ve seen.

I saw Patricia Arquette on The Daily Show a while back, promoting her new show.  She was wearing some kind of 70s-puce-coloured pyjama knit tight-fitting dress/pullover ($14 at Wal-Mart?) that emphasized her every roll.  Odd choice.  Don’t get me wrong—I basically think people should weigh virtually whatever they’re comfortable with. . .but of course obviously there are points at which health factors must come into play.  On CSI: Cyber, Arquette seems always to be dressed in “slimming,” or de-outlining black.  (Strange, now that I think of it, that the producers aren’t going with cleavage, for this is something all true female CSIs always brandish on TV.) 

 CSI—that franchise just propagates like head lice, or bedbugs, or mosquitoes at dusk on a northern lake. . . .  When I’m on my deathbed, I’ll rue the hours I sacrificed to CSI.  Once I had free cable for a few years—first time I’d had TV in more than a few years.  What with my schedule and the times I was becalmed, I think I saw every episode of the old Michael Moriarty Law & Order about 15 times—I guess that’s another franchise that, given Americans’ unquenchable appetite for fear and conspiracy, just kept growing.  Maybe it’s over now, though, that franchise.  I liked the episodes with Jerry Orbach.  Orbach seemed like a decent and philosophical guy while he lived, and I liked his weary seen-it-all character.  I really liked the moral seriousness of Moriarty’s character—when was the last time you saw that on American TV (and no, I don’t mean “ideological purity” or “ideological certainty”)?  But of course in real life Moriarty is apparently some wacko far-right conspiracy theorist.  Wonder if he’s still in Canada hanging out with tapstresses.  I remember when he came to Canada, fleeing the freedom-denying U.S.  ...one of the first things he tried to do was light up a cigar in his hotel room.  Tough introduction to liberty, that one.

 Anyway, remember how fanatical they always were about always showing characters eating, or just doing something, to keep us occupied while we watched?  Actually this is something that goes back to the earliest American radio detective serials, in which they built in patter outside the main plot to keep the audience thinking it was eavesdropping on a real situation, etc. (check out Frank and Joe swapping cigarettes in Dragnet, for example.)

Anyway anyway, I see in the two episodes of CSI: Cyber that I’ve seen that a feature of Patricia Arquette’s character is that she’s always holding a tub of soda when she’s walking around the quasi-lit monitor-festooned windowless enclaves where real CSI people always work.  Heaven knows what she does on an airplane or just how giant are the custom-made cupholders they had to put in the obnoxious more or less unmanoevreable monster SUVs they always make CSIs drive.  (Question: is it only sponsorship and vehicle placement, or is there any possible reason that CSIs need 15 ft. of vehicle space behind them when driving to a scene where they only use flashlights and rubber gloves?  Maybe there’s lots of bodies to stack up in the back, I guess, but I thought others took care of that while CSIs caught bad guys or looked at those astonishingly instantaneously informative computers rather than ferrying corpses.)

Now if Patricia Arquette is big or getting bigger, yes, yes, I know it’s probably not because of her soda tubs on TV.  Judging by their appearance and the way she airily waves them around like tissues, the way the straws always stick way straight up like toothpicks in an ice-cube tray, I guess they’re empty.  Hm.  Maybe the show producers are trying to suggest that her size is because of her soda addiction.  At any rate, it seems like the soda tub is meant to be linked with her character throughout the serial—or maybe the producers are already planning/have planned an episode in which she has a heart attack or something and has to give up soda and it becomes a crisis in her life.  I’m doubting that a bit, though, for we rarely see the personal sides of detective characters.  Remember how “Horatio Cain (sp?)” always found a way to show up at the funerals of victims whose crimes he’d solved (maybe he’s still doing it); that man was working 24/7, and since he probably slept in so many graveyards, he probably needed those sunglasses at dawn.

So Arquette’s overweight—no, there is no gender double standard here.  Overweight people of all kinds have been all over TV forever; with the early radio and TV Dragnet, Frank was portly and interested in food.  More power to ‘em, just less power to them to dictate their own mortality, is all.  I said all this stuff in my Martin Short post, anyway.  ((Speaking only personally, I think it is more attractive (and possibly more healthy, though I wouldn’t know), to be a bit more overweight than underweight.))

Of course, back in the day, EVERYONE was always smoking.  Pretty well every radio serial was sponsored by—not alcohol or cars or trucks or even oil companies so much—but cigarettes.  NOTHING was more ubiquitous.  But nowadays, cigarettes are so frowned upon that you might see fake ones or unlit ones, or whatever.  Now think about what kills Americans—heart disease, diabetes, obesity, etc.—why would Hollywood draw up a character such as Arquette who is always waving around a garish soda tub?  On a show where the writers sit around all day trying to dream up the most sick and convoluted and improbable murders, why would they write a lead character who chooses the most obvious self murder? I mean, cigarettes were supposed to be cool, or something, or evince adulthood, or satisfy sponsors or show brand affiliation, or offer a prop way to emphasize dialogue or gestures, say.  What can a giant soda tub do?  How is it cool or a pivotal addition to Arquette’s “range” of character traits?  It looks idiotic, like Yosemite Sam carrying around a BlackBerry. I thought Hollywood millionaires ate well and health consciously, to the extent of pretty much starving to death rural Peru by driving up demand and prices for quinoa, for example.  I don’t get it.  I don’t get how Hollywood, which is prepared to create and display endless violence, but will hair-split and mince around or even come out guns blazing against the most minor social offenses, will develop a leading character for a top franchise that shows her always attached to what tends to kill thousands upon thousands of Americans every year.  Do you buy that “role model” thing?  I sure don’t.  I liked hockey as a kid, but it certainly never occurred to me when I was playing that a guy on a pro team was some sort of “role model.”  But we’re addicted to this idea of “role models,” so let’s try it on: “Mommy mommy, I want to be a cool boss CSI someday, like Patricia Arquette—she’s so cool. . .and she gets to drink Coke all day!!!”  Yes Virginia, you keep doing that and balloon to 200 and see how many job offers you get, no matter how brilliant you are at delegating.  I don’t know.  Maybe it’s meant to “humanize” Arquette—make us see that this steely boss nevertheless has food or drink obsessions most of us can relate to. 

Why couldn’t they always have shown Arquette drinking coffee or tea?  These are chemically very complex beverages that, on the whole, science has suggested are largely beneficial.  Further, shows like CSI invest a great deal in creating an illusion of reality and seriousness—so then why the h*** would a supposedly cerebral top CSI do something that was so patently life-shortening and foolish?  How is she going to catch bad guys when she’s dead at 55?  That’s a lot of bad guys she might otherwise have caught as she approached retirement.

Yes ok, minds more brilliant and attentive than mine have no doubt already worked out this soda addiction topcop thing on the internet.  I’m just rambling, as I told you at the start I was.  Weird that ultra-sensitive Hollywood would write a star for a major series who so evidently had a (relatively non-addictive—I mean, soda isn’t heroin) life-shortening habit.

Well, that’s my piffle post for now.  It just struck me so I wrote a few (ok hundred) words, is all.





1 comment:

  1. I must say, I'm struck by the gravity of my own post. But. sure enough, standing in line tonight at the checkout, I was confronted by blob Horatio scandal. I must have either too much time on my hands, or too much time in my hands. Palin would shoot me through these lines, but until then, I'm stuck reading about her state-named offspring and all of their triumphs.