Elevate Difference

Vag Magazine

I didn’t think it was even figuratively possible to shoot yourself in the foot while disappearing up your own behind, but the characters in Vag Magazine have proven otherwise. This eerily well-observed sketch show from the women of the Upright Citizens Brigade is watchable and rewatchable by third wave feminists and those who love them—or who love to laugh at them—especially since every episode is available on the web.

The six-episode, internet-based series of shorts shows what happens when a trendy, glossy women's magazine is taken over by a group of hardcore third wave feminists who revamp it by firing all but one staff person then change its name to Vag Magazine. The newly minted mag is a hipster-heavy haven of hypocritical hilarity that describes itself as such: "Not your grandma's feminist magazine, though we support her as a woman."

I have to admit that, as the editor of a comedic zine about menstruation, I was terrified Vag Magazine would have me crying instead of cracking up. And I'm relieved to report that the show is really very funny. The humor is devised from improvisation at its finest. The overall concept covered all my pet peeves about feminism, an ideology to which I subscribe, despite the kind of annoying behaviour on display in Vag Magazine. I offer the following dialogue as evidence.

Hierarchical Hypocrisy: "We don’t believe in hierarchies, but we also don’t have time to get our own coffee."

Capitalist Conundrum: "I feel like the idea of advertisers is really un-feminist." Swiftly followed by, "It's just that we need advertising dollars if we’re gonna be able to tell women what to do."

The biting observations are dead-on, down to the last detail: roller derby, cloth maxipads, ironic bunting. The writers leave no handmade, vegan, Zapatista-solidarity stone unturned. You’ve gotta be in that scene, or very near to it, to be able to poke so much fun in such glorious detail, and to my satisfied delight.

How did these awesome comedians have time to spy on self-righteous feminists and put together an outstanding sketch comedy show? Perhaps a future season of Vag Magazine will tell us.

Written by: Chella Quint, April 16th 2011

Nice review!