Saturday, January 21, 2012

Yucking It Up: Hollywood and Food Allergies

The other day, I happened to catch a preview for the second season of a television show called "Portlandia." It was 30 seconds designed to be hilarious enough to inspire you to watch the series. And what's the go-to 5-second visual gag they knew the entire country could get behind?

You guessed it. Making fun of food allergies.

Hysterical! Always good for a laugh from everyone!

I see this everywhere I turn. Somehow, the possibility that our children could drop dead is the funniest thing people have ever seen. When I point out that dozens of shows use food allergies as the go-to laugh, people look at me blankly. Occasionally someone will say gently "perhaps you're oversensitive, dear."

Really? Would they feel that way if I laughed hysterically about leukemia? Snorted about cystic fibrosis? WHY is is o.k. for Hollywood to consistently portray our children as objects of fun?

The blown up face! Hysterical! (Courtesy of "The Big Bang Theory")

The wuss who talks funny when he has a reaction! What a riot! (Courtesy of "Friends")

The incredibly overprotected kid who also just happens to have multiple allergies! (Thank you, iCarly)

I see one of these at least once a month. And guess what? The laugh track is always, always Volume 10.