HALLMARK MOVIES-RESPITE OR WORLDVIEW?
Okay, so I’m a Hallmark movie-channel junkie. When I see the byline, “Larry Levinson Productions, I gather the popcorn, my favorite red, down throw and settle in front of the television. Don’t judge me, all right. I need some kind of respite from the negative state of our world these days. And believe it or not, those soap-opera, sometimes badly acted Hallmark movies, can filter in a little light of positivity and offset the dark side of humanity that is broadcast non-stop on the airwaves. Even to a cynic, but especially to an idealist like me.
Why just last evening I watched one of the most predictable, melodramatic scenes ever performed on mindless tv. There was this character who lived her life as a doormat never confronting anyone or anything preferring to be “agreeable” instead. That is until another stale character literally took her by the hands and led her to the mirror and left her standing there to confront her own wimpy self. That visual triggered the memory of one of my most important life's lessons.
I recalled a day in my childhood when I cried to my grandmother that I was ugly because I didn’t look like the children on television and in the picture books that I had begun reading in school. My grandmother took me by the hand and led me to the bathroom mirror and ordered me to look at myself.
She said, “You got brown skin and nappy hair, but you belong to God, just like the white children, including them in the picture books and magazines. And you ain’t ugly ‘cause God don’t make nothing' ugly.” As time went on, she also taught me to believe that if anyone had a problem with how I looked, it was his or her problem, not mine.
Who knew that a poorly acted, overdramatic movie would remind me of my uneducated, pipe-smoking, Bible-reading Louisiana sharecropper grandmother’s worldview? That the emotions this movie evoked in me would offer, in a time when all I see is how ignorance and fear trump respect for humanity and civility, a semblance of the comfort and confidence I'd gained from my grandmother’s love and wisdom . Hence, the reason I am addicted to soapy, Hallmark movies revealed!