Screwball Comedy

Katharine, Jesse and Screwball Comedy in THE SOCIAL NETWORK

Article: Katharine, Jesse and Screwball Comedy in THE SOCIAL NETWORK

I have a friend and colleague here at Ohio University who stopped me in the hall last week: “THE SOCIAL NETWORK…?” — I had just seen it — “a Screwball Comedy without the comedy.” That makes it just screwball, right? I’d agree. I cannot wrap my mind around what the freaking bubble-dy blitz is all about. According to my colleague, Professor Louis-Georges Schwartz, Film Studies, Jesse Eisenberg stands in nicely for Katherine Hepburn, who is typically read as male in classic Screwball construction, only to be rightly feminized by such a film’s conclusion. Jesse as Katharine? Feminized from the start, Justin Timberlake’s bitch by the middle, his own version of the lonely and heart broken pimp by the end (read business card, “I’m CEO … bitch!”), Jessie certainly has the same Hepburn-esque wise-cracking snaps firing from his mouth, rat-tat-tat-tat-tat.