Sunday, June 29, 2008

With the Summer hiatus of television and a possible actor's strike, Mr. B and I try to use Netflix to find new shows to get hooked on during the slow season. Big Love is an HBO television drama about a fundamentalist Mormon family in Utah that practices polygamy.

What the show tries to deliver is that the family being portrayed in this series is doing polygamy the "right" way. No underage marriages and each wife and kids has their own house...all three houses and three wives right in a row.

The episode that we saw last night was an eye opener. The family always has to lie about their lifestyle to neighbors and coworkers for fear of getting caught. After all, it's illegal to have more than one wife-- which leads me to the question of "why?"

I'm not looking to "share" my husband with another wife (and, I don't think he's looking for another?!) but all these women were agreeable to one forced them into this community marriage and they mention how they can always leave the family if they so desire. I realize this is a fictional television show but the families all seem to take care of each other and help with household responsibilities and watch over children when needed.

I believe Oprah had a "family" with three wives (three must be the lucky number in polygamy) on her show and they looked pretty darn normal to me...Opie was even surprised by how "everyday" they were. The husband had even mentioned how they could be arrested for being there.

I find it interesting that our society has a problem with this idea of a marriage. Yes, it's "different" but if it works and no laws are broken...what's the big deal with big love?


maggie said...

I was reading What Peace There May Be by Susanna Barlow over the weekend, and was struck by the same thing. She mentions in her book that when she was growing up, everything outside the front gate was off limits. I gained a much better understanding of polygamy and what it does to the children through reading her book... much more so that I've ever gotten from watching an episode of Big Love.

benson said...

Thanks for the tip Maggie--I'll check it out. I think the whole idea fascinates me..a taboo subject with so many people involved and the way society looks at a "family" like this.