To all the genres I’ve loved before – The disappearance of the conventional romcom
To all genres, I’ve adored before
There was a time when romantic comedies (or romantic comedies) were a synonym for success and excellence. In the old times, it was nearly impossible to enter a theater and not be able to see at least one poster for the most recent hot film of the genre.
The term is now “row
“m-com” must be spoken in soft tones that are quiet enough that nobody hears it. It’s become nothing more than silly air-head-styled movies that are great to play in the background. Why? Let’s discover.
Personally, I’ve always been a lover of romantic comedy. Since I was a kid I’ve been a huge fan of romantic comedies, with every aspect and in all the various time frames. No matter if it was a happy, sweet love story that was set in the 1990s or a sad tale that dates back to the 1940s… I simply fell in love with the genre. I can’t think of anything as a romantic rom-com with an added bonus of comedy!
But even I (i.e. the classic definition of the term “hopeless romantic”) am finding it difficult to digest the rom-coms that have come out in recent times. Of the handful which is still being made, however, the quality has declined and viewership has gone down what caused that to take place?
When feminism collided with rom-com…
The primary viewers of rom-coms have dramatically changed over the past few years.
Women are typically the primary audience for romantic comedies, however shifts in society between the years 2000 and 2010 have affected how they appreciate this genre, particularly due to the rise of feminism over the past two decades.
It is clear that the 21st Century Feminist Woman is looking to feel empowered in her own right, self-sufficient, and independent. She doesn’t want films that suggest finding Mr. Right will bring her joy. Additionally, because rom-coms generally use gender stereotypes to provide comedy relief and use toxic stereotypes to propel their plot, they do not have the impact they had in the past.
For example, the adored love story The 10 Days to Love Man days (2003) was a huge hit during its glory days and has been a classic of the genre since. However, if it was made available in 2022, its reaction might be very different.
The film perpetuates the most harmful stereotypes of women and basically suggests that women should depend on males and their desire to be happy. It was released over 20 years ago, it’s safe to say that we shouldn’t be expecting that it will be an effective defender of feminism, however, I’m not sure it’d be well-received when it was released today.
So, the majority of film studios today prefer to stay away from rom-coms and instead focus on other genres that leave the most room for feminism to flourish, like superhero films that feature female characters. However, this can be a subject to discuss, especially because the majority of these films are a specific and unintersectional type of feminism. It is more about looks than substance.
While rom-coms are slowed down in terms of audience and ratings They only become more troublesome.
Use For instance The Kissing Booth(2018) as an illustration. The film is filled with sexual remarks and casual slut-shaming. It also includes the horrible trope ‘ he is mean to you because he is fond of you as well as all the most infuriating aspects of romance films. The film was given the green light as did its sequel and its successor… as well. And neither was less problematic or better in terms of quality.
However, it could be because when studios saw the audience for rom-coms shrink every day they realized that investing many millions in creating rom-coms wasn’t worth it since they would make more losses than gains.
The Kissing Boothcost around $10 million to produce, which may seem like an enormous amount, but is in reality nothing if you look at it in comparison to previous works within the genre. For example, Notting Hill(1999) was a film with a budget of $42 million, and… Well it is possible to certainly see the improvement in quality.
Film studios are investing lesser in rom-coms since 2004 when they started to notice declines in revenue viewership, as well as market share for the genre. This has resulted in an unforgiving cycle of vicious circle as fewer people watch, and studios invest less, which affects the quality of the show, resulting in (once again) the viewership dropping… then it goes on and on.
However the fact that rom-coms continue to live on – but they’re not big-screen…
There are television shows
TV shows have seen an incredible revival in mainstream media over the past few years (particularly during the time that the pandemic COVID-19 was sweeping through) and romance shows are among the shows that are taking the nation by storm.
Sitcoms typically include elements of comedy in their tales When you include romance in the mix, you’ll get… romantic comedy. This is the reason I believe that romance-themed series could provide an opportunity in the near future for rom-coms. they contain all the elements of the genre and are generally enjoyable and are watched by people who actually enjoy them.
For example the show “Never Have I ever(2020) probably qualifies as a sitcom with a romantic element that was able to attract 40 million viewers worldwide within the first month following its debut which is a remarkable number for any type of. Another illustration could be Bridgerton, a Netflix program Bridgerton that (albeit not officially classified as a comedy) features humor in conjunction with romance, and also has an impressive number of viewers.
Furthermore, Korean Dramas (or K-Dramas) are a great contemporary version of romance films. They’re certainly romantic, and 9 times out of 10, have some moments of humor.
In addition (and most important) They are generally high in quality, with stunning cinematography, engaging dialogue, incredible soundtracks, and intricate, original plots.
Another reason K-Dramas are laudable is the fact that they’re not afraid to take romance to the next level; they’re not afraid to come with a cheesy and corny look. Since more and more movies and television shows are becoming cynical regarding romantic love, it’s refreshing that we keep a place for romantics.
The good news is that they are actually watched by people! Let’s take The Hometown Cha Cha Cha(2021) to illustrate. Not just did the show have an impressive number of viewers across South Korea, but it quickly became one of Netflix’s most-watched non-English shows ever. There’s a lot of an appetite for this type of show and the quality is quite high too.
The final word
However, very often there’s always an excellent rom-com film being released. It’s not often but it does happen often. The good thing about modern rom-coms is that they’re becoming more and more willing to tell the tales of minorities.
Crazy Rich Asians(2018) is a perfect illustration – the movie features an all-Asian cast and raked in a staggering box-office gross of $239 million against an estimated $30M budget. This is a remarkable record for a film, but it’s even better considering how other rom-coms have been doing in recent times. Another one that springs to the mind would be Half of It(2020) A rom-com about coming of age written by Alice Wu, which follows the struggles of the romance of an aspiring LGBT and Asian-American girl.
These two films are both major advancements in the area of representation in rom-coms which is a major issue the genre has had to confront. The majority ( basically the entirety) of romantic comedies feature gay couples and both of them are usually white. As the world is changing it is very pleasing to witness diversity becoming more frequent on screen and behind the camera.
Overall although the genre of Rom-com films may have ended it’s not likely that romcoms overall will ever disappear completely. They could see a dramatic decrease in terms of quality ( though, God forbid!) and could move entirely to the format of the series however, chances are they will live for a while in some form.
If you’re like me, don’t be discouraged now! There’s still hope (albeit fragile) toward the other side of that tunnel! As good romantic comedies taught us – love overcomes all.
Do you think so? Do you believe that the next phase of romantic comedies will be on television rather than in film? Tell us via the comment section below!
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