January 15, 2011

Thanksgiving promotion in Raising Hope

I gave up on Raising Hope, the new Fox TV comedy, after one mediocre episode. But I recently caught the ninth episode, Meet the Grandparents (airdate: 11/23/10). The theme was Thanksgiving.

The main character Jimmy, the family's young man, works in a supermarket. The episode begins with a gung-ho manager staging a promotion the Saturday before Thanksgiving. He dresses up in a Plains chief headdress while the others don Pilgrim hats or headbands with feathers. He tries to rally them with a "gobble gobble" cheer, but they toss their headgear in disgust at his foolishness.

Even though the show disposes of this stunt quickly, it's still wrong for two reasons. No Plains headdresses were at the first Thanksgiving, and non-Indians shouldn't dress up as Indians. As usual, it's pure stereotyping of a kind that rarely happens to other ethnic groups. Yet it happens to Indians every Halloween and Thanksgiving.

For more on the subject, see Thanksgiving Pageant in Desperate Housewives and Thanksgiving Pageant in The Blind Side.

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