Media Report Essay

Submitted By HopeHealLife
Words: 833
Pages: 4

Taylor Buckley 4.22.2014
Professor Treboux PSY-220
Show: Pretty Little Liars
Episode: 16 Season: 4
Title: Close Encounters Aired: 01/21/14 TV-14

The ABC Families show Pretty Little Liars airing every Tuesday night from 8-9pm, is based on a popular series of novels written by Sara Shepard. This television show is consider a well-liked teen drama mystery-thriller, it takes place in a fictional town called Rosewood, Pennsylvania. The series is based off of four girls whose clique falls apart after the disappearance of their “Queen Bee” Alison. Although the series is based on finding the reason for her disappearance, romantic relationships between characters always arise to spark some interest in what actually happens in adolescents lives. The purpose of this report is to gain an understanding on how sexual relationships are projected to adolescents through television shows. After watching the hour long episode I observed more interpersonal drama rather than romantic relationships. For example the episode was based more on the investigation among the four girls on seeing what exactly happened to their friend ‘A,’ instead of finding that ideal guy or finding out who hooked up with who the night before. The story centers on the murder of a teen, and a few other violent acts follow. A girl's lifeless body is shown lying on the ground, and a man's corpse shows signs of his being shot in the head. The teens' lives are threatened and some characters disappear, but there's more suspense than violence in these cases. The relationship between the teen and her teacher would be considered sexual assault in the real world, though that's not how it's positioned in the show. On the other hand, one character just ended a relationship with her boyfriend and was devastated. In the show they portrayed a breakup to mean the end of the world. For example, in one scene she was cleaning out her entire room throwing out everything that reminded her of her ex, even if some of the materials were considered her favorite things. Also, in another scene the same girl was isolating herself in her window drawn dark room laying on her bed listening breakup songs crying (scene 18). I feel the director hit the nail on the socket in regards to portraying what happens to a teenage girl after a breakup. This television show also plays up the drama of teens' lives, making everything look much more exciting, sexy, beautiful, and mysterious than it is in real life. Bullying is central to the plot, as teens are stalked by an unknown person who coerces their actions with threats of revealing their secrets. Teens are sometimes portrayed as catty and clique-ish. Characters' loyalties shift, making it difficult to assess the nature of their intentions, and emotional betrayal is common among the characters. Naughty behavior like theft, extramarital affairs, and manipulation is common, though much of it has consequences for those involved. A high school teacher engages in a physical relationship with his student, which is treated as a love affair rather than sexual assault, sending problematic messages about consent. That said, there are some moments that underscore the