I recently watched the pilot episode of ABC’s “Work It.” The show’s basic premise is that two men feel they must dress and act as women in order to find work in the tough economic climate today. Additionally, the show is billed as a “high-concept” comedy based on the idea that men dressed as women is inherently funny and entertaining.
The show generally makes light of and trivializes many of the difficulties transgender people routinely – and without choice – encounter in the workplace. Recent surveys have shown that the transgender community is one of the most discriminated against minorities, and while many people feel that this show is just a joke, it is hard to imagine other minority groups being parodied in this way and having it appear on television. Further, many bloggers and critics claim that these are just men who are dressing as women and that this show has nothing to do with transgender people or transgenderism. In reality, these men who are dressing as women to find jobs are making a joke of transwomen’s reality: trying to live their lives as women with male bodies, making sense of or hiding their work history and personal lives in order not to expose their past life histories as men and portraying those who “cross-dress” as inherently deceitful.
Additionally, the show operates under the assumption that being a woman in the workforce and job market is easier than being a man. Sexist one liners are common. For example, they joke that saleswomen are more successful in pharmaceutical sales because the doctors want to sleep with them. Not funny.
Essentially, I see no redeeming qualities about this show; the jokes and dialogue or neither witty nor funny. I sincerely hope that the show will be pulled from the air very soon. Don’t let your curiosity get the best of you, avoid this show and save your time.