Rebecca Downs

Contributing Writer

Latest from Rebecca Downs

Atheist Jim Brockmire (Hank Azaria) on IFC’s Brockmire might not make much headway in finding God, but he does find plenty of ways to offend in April 17’s episode, “The Yips.”

Another year of TIME’s 100 Most Influential People means another promotion of Planned Parenthood. Dr. Leana Wen came on as the abortion giant’s new president in November 2018, replacing the outgoing Cecile Richards, who was included twice before, and already Wen made TIME's 2019 list.

The third season of Star has not been without its fair share of depressing storylines, one of them being Carlotta Brown (Queen Latifah) grappling with how her stepfather, Calvin (Ben Vereen), abused and raped her for years. In April 10’s episode, however, “Amazing Grace,” there is a glimmer of humanity as Carlotta also comes to terms with how a baby boy she conceived from the sexual abuse, previously thought to have been a stillborn, may still be alive.

If you thought the April 5 episode of Fox’s Proven Innocent, titled “The Struggle For Stonewall,” complete with actual footage of LGBT pride parades and rallies was going to be virtue signaling, you’d be correct. One of the very first lines bashes conservatives. As Madeline (Rachelle Lefevre) and her investigator Bodie (Vincent Kartheiser) are walking through a LGBT-friendly neighborhood, Bodie, who is straight, mentions that because “this place is rocking,” it “really makes [him] rethink [his] lifestyle choices.”

If viewers thought they would feel sympathetic towards the protagonist of CW's In the Dark, Murphy Mason (Perry Mattfeld), because she’s blind and her best friend may have died, they’re in for a surprise.

Earlier in March, Shrill premiered on Hulu, which had main character Annie feeling “really, really good” and “very fucking powerful” after having an abortion in the Pilot episode. One of the show’s writers, Lindy West, who co-created #ShoutYourAbortion, described the abortion scene as “almost boring television” in a video interview with Jezebel, and that she was proud of that.

CBS’s God Friended Me has been pretty well-behaved since its inception. It even made our 2018 Nice List. However, after the show introduced the storyline of Reverend Arthur Finer (Joe Morton) having both an atheist son, Miles (Brandon Michael Hall), and a lesbian daughter, Ali (Javicia Leslie), you knew it was only a matter of time before that plot got out of hand. That finally happened in the episode “Return to Sender” on March 24, as Reverend Finer is being considered for Episcopal Bishop of New York.

In a continuation from last week’s episode of Star, the March 20 episode, “Watch the Throne,” once more delves into the characters' fight to make Atlanta a sanctuary city so that Simone can be reunited with her husband Angel, an illegal immigrant who is on the run from ICE.

In the Hulu original series released March 15 and aptly titled Shrill, for how annoying it is, Saturday Night Live’s Aidy Bryant plays Annie, an overweight journalist who is trying to be more in touch with herself and find a healthy amount of self-esteem in her life to deal with her job, her parents, and her relationships.

The week’s not over yet, and television viewers have been treated multiple times to lectures about illegal immigration. On March 14’s episode of For the People, “This Is America,” we’re treated to a spectacular feat complete with showdowns in a federal courthouse, quick trips across the country to immigrant detention centers, and calls to ICE and Washington, DC. All because of a Guatemalan man, Merced, and his 7-year old son, Ramon.

The mainstream media is no stranger to being an ally of the abortion movement. Vox recently engaged in such a play of euphemisms that they had to issue a correction. What’s even better is that this article is in their “Explainers” section.

After its several weeks long hiatus, Fox's Star returned with its doozy of a March 13 episode, "When Stars Fall Down." Along with it returned the plight of illegal immigrant, Angel Rivera (Evan Ross), who's been moved to a sanctuary city due to concerns about ICE. His wife, Simone (Brittany O'Grady) is none too pleased or patient, even when Gravity Records owner Mateo (William Levy) is doing her, and Angel, a favor with his committment to go behind the scenes to make Atlanta a sanctuary city.

Pro-lifers take it on the chin again. On March 8’s episode of the critically panned Proven Innocent on Fox, “The Shame Game,” viewers are immediately treated to a radical display of clamoring and screaming pro-lifers making their presence known before the trial of a Muslim woman, Sarah Bukhari, who is charged with both feticide and homicide for dumping the body of her newborn child in a construction site trash bin.

While the U.S. Senate failed to pass legislation last week which would require providing care to a baby born alive from an abortion, it hasn’t all been bad news for pro-lifers. The Trump administration issued a rule which removes Title X funding from organizations, like Planned Parenthood, which perform or refer for abortions on February 22. Naturally, the media pounced, with two particularly glaring examples coming from The New York Times and NBC News.

For weeks, How to Get Away with Murder's Annalise Keating (Viola Davis) has gone toe to toe with Governor Lynne Birkhead (Laura Innes), the conniving Republican governor who is determined to bring Annalise down through blackmail, deceit, and, even murder.

On February 25, the the Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act failed to earn the 60 votes needed to pass the U.S. Senate. For many, including the bill’s sponsor, Senator Ben Sasse of Nebraska, there was shock as well as sadness. How could 60 Senators fail to pass a bill protecting already born babies from infanticide, especially when it should have been all 100 Senators doing so?

For Dick Wolf’s FBI on CBS, the search for a bomber is not enough to be the main story. February 26’s episode, "Scorched Earth," focuses on the deeper meaning of women who get ahead in the workplace facing misogyny, which we're supposed to believe literally kills.

It’s no surprise that a young Sheldon would go through great lengths to prove he was right, or that an adult Sheldon would think fondly of the memory. However, the February 21 episode of Young Sheldon, “A Loaf of Bread and a Grand Old Flag," took it to the next level with Sheldon supporting communism.

Proven Innocent, the latest Fox drama, aired its Pilot episode on February 15. The basic premise of the show seems edgy and clever, but it quickly devolves into the usual tired and worn SJW tropes.