chapter  8
14 Pages

Fitting in with the Media: The Price-benoits and the Franzes: Lee Hood

THIS EXCHANGE TOOK PLACE during the premiere episode of the Fox Television situation comedy Malcolm in the Middle. 1 Stevie, whose mother made the disparaging remark about television, is portrayed as a bit of a nerd and an outcast, the kind of kid who eats lunch alone. Malcolm, who tries to set Stevie straight, is a young boy who wants so desperately to be "normal" that he protests being put into a special class for gifted children. The conversation succinctly illustrates the tensions between the negative accounts of the media, which have become such a common public script, and the feeling that one must somehow engage with media products to be able to participate in social situations.