By Mike McMahan, LPC
Chanel and the surviving Chanels are back for another season of Scream Queens. The campy and humor is still the show’s primary feature and Emma Roberts is still killing it (figuratively?) as Chanel Oberlin, the queen of the most self-absorbed and least self-aware TV trio in quite some time. The humor is still pitch black and in very questionable taste. My favorite thing about this show the huge amount dialogue. This style of dialogue, which I also enjoyed in the similarly rapid-fire Gilmore Girls and reflective speak of Northern Exposure, allows a lot of information to be packed into a small amount of time and provides the actors and actresses some room to show their stuff. On the opposite side of the coin in my professional life, this way of speaking can be challenging in clients, though, as it can be difficult for me to process everything and keep up with the words the client is using to relate their tale. On a purely practical level, one of my most challenging cases was working with a woman who had to be the fastest speaker I’ve ever known. During our first session, I realized I had learned more about her than I usually do in several sessions and we had only been talking 15 minutes!
Scream Queens season two moves the action to a seemingly distant locale: a specialty hospital opened by Dean Kathy Munsch (Jamie Lee Curtis), who has parlayed the events of the first season into a book and motivational speaking empire. The survivors from the first year are drawn into events after newly minted doctor Zayday Williams (Keke Palmer), notes the lack of female staff. We also learn that the Chanels have been cleared from the events of last year due, conveniently to a Netflix documentary, which, I’m sure, bears no resemblance to Making A Murderer. Naturally “Dr.” Munsch brings in the Chanels and the story takes off, the first episode, unsurprisingly, ending with a murder (no spoilers here on the identity, though!).
Very few (if any) of us have the opportunity to move our friends and support network to an entirely new locale. This might happen if a group of high school friends went off to college together or, perhaps, in the case of a mass transfer at your place of employment. But, usually, if we move to a new city we have to start over from square one with a new social network. Of course, if you’re married with children, they’re likely going with you, but we’re talking about a larger circle of people for this exercise.
Which makes this a perfect question for the make-believe machine. Think about somewhere you would move if you could go anywhere. San Francisco? Seattle? Hell, Michigan? Somewhere else?
Now, consider the things that would be better about your new life in the place you chose; perhaps the sprawling mecca Truth or Consequences, New Mexico.
I am skeptical that simply moving to a new place would markedly improve your life, so if things are going better, I believe that you and your “Chanels” must be doing to something to make it better. And, finally, the key question: what keeps you from doing those things here in your current city?
Of course, most of us will never make such a fantasy move. But it’s fun to think about and a good way to consider what is currently working for us and how can better appreciate and benefit from the kindness and support of our friends here, as well as better support the other members of our social network.
Mike McMahan, LPC is a psychotherapist based in San Antonio, Texas.
Therapy Goes POP
Perspectives on therapy and mental health as viewed through the lens of popular culture