Following the premiere’s glowing support of Planned Parenthood (and an even worse trailer after that), Tuesday’s episode of The Mick on Fox skipped the pretense of woman’s health and went straight for the sex. All of this to honor the "real" symbol of women’s power: the birth control pill.
In “The Buffer,” Mickey (Kaitlin Olson) is concerned about Sabrina (Sofia Black D’Elia) having sex with her boyfriend without birth control pills or condoms. Though the phrase “your body, your choice” makes a frequent if not irritating number of appearances, there’s no escape from the barrage of birth control promotion, so it's really no choice at all.
In the new age of awful humor, we’re treated to yet another uncomfortable scene that I suppose someone in the world (not me) had to find funny.
Mickey: Knock, knock. Can I come in?
Sabrina: Mm-hmm. You could also actually knock.
Mickey: Yeah. How's it going? Everything good?
Sabrina: Yep. Just chillin'.
Mickey: Yeah, yeah. So, Kai, huh? He seems cool. Yeah. What's his deal? Is he like a... A fireman or a model or something?
Sabrina: No. No, he builds furniture out of found wood.
Mickey: (Laughing): Found wood. Found wood's a thing. Oh. So, I guess you guys are having sex, huh?
Sabrina: Oh, God, are we having the talk?
Mickey: No, I don't want to have the talk, at all. Listen, I just wanted to let you know that I totally get it and you picked a good one, that guy is a hall of fame piece of ass. (Chuckling) Oh, man, I'd let him do things to me...
Sabrina: Please stop! Just stop it.
Mickey: All right, the point is, uh, you're a woman with needs and I get it, so as long as you're using condoms, I'm cool.
Sabrina: We're not.
Mickey: Oh, okay. Well, that's cool. Your body, your choice. I am more of a pill person myself.
Sabrina: Do you have any idea how poisonous that stuff is?
Mickey: How is birth control poison, Sabrina?
Sabrina: It destroys your body and causes crazy mood swings.
Mickey: So do babies!
Sabrina: Why do you all of a sudden care what...? Oh... I get it.
Mickey: (Laughs) Get what?
Sabrina: You're jealous.
Mickey: I'm jealous? Yeah. What, of you? Why would I be jealous of you?
Sabrina: Maybe because I have a beautiful hunk of beef and you don't.
Mickey: I got beef.
Sabrina: Who, Jimmy? That packaged lunch meat? I'm over here feasting on filet mignon.
Mickey: All right, you know what? I don't want to have this conversation. I just don't want you to get pregnant, so why don't you just take some of my pills, until you go fill a prescription of your own.
Sabrina: (Chuckling): You keep your birth control in a plastic bag?
Mickey: Well, I buy it in bulk online. I find it more cost effective.
Sabrina: I don't want them, okay?
Mickey: Why are you so resistant to the pill? It's a modern miracle! The pill revolutionized everything for women. We were able to join the workforce. It allowed us to...
Sabrina: You never worked a day in your life. (Door opening)
Mickey: But I could if I wanted to, thanks to this magic little pill.
Ben: Those pills are magic?
Mickey: Oh, here we go. Ben, let me ask you something. If there was a pill that gave you the freedom to be anything in the whole world, would you take it?
Mickey: There you go. This kid gets it and he's, like, three.
Sabrina: Great, then he can take 'em. How 'bout that?
Mickey: Okay, come back here. Come on, Sabrina.
I might be wrong about this show. I, for one, love to be told that the success of the modern woman is due to a tiny pill and not her own convictions. I almost love it just as much as being convinced I’m drowning in my need for sex and need to be saved from having babies. This show may have a female lead, but it doesn’t seem to think highly of women.
Actually, I don’t really know what’s worse in this situation: the fact that birth control use is shoved down my throat with plain abstinence ignored once again or that genuine concerns about birth control are brushed to the side. I understand that birth control is a “miracle” for women’s rights in this story, but we can’t seriously consider the side effects of preventing an actual miracle in creating a human being? Even when the show brings it up, Mickey just brushes it aside noting that “[a] kid gets it” about using the pill.
Unfortunately, the episode is not afraid to get deeper in its depravity with other birth control-related plots for the boys (equal opportunity!) Mickey's lecture might not have worked on Sabrina, but the youngest, Ben (Jack Stanton), takes Mickey’s birth control himself after hearing her talk about them being magic pills. Then the middle kid, Chip (Thomas Barbusca), goes through a brief period of wanting a vasectomy after Mickey’s friend Jimmy warns him about girls “accidentally” getting knocked up by rich guys. And here I thought I only had to worry about the girl.
These characters would be awful enough without this bias. It only becomes worse when we remember that this is only episode three, we haven't even gotten to the show where Ben wears a dress and says, "It breezes on my vagina."