No, I Do Not Like Richonne (Rick and Michonne as Romantic Couple on television series The Walking Dead) – Sex Can Be Risky in the Apocalypse

No, I Do Not Like Richonne (Rick and Michonne as Romantic Couple on television series The Walking Dead) – Sex Can Be Risky in the Apocalypse

This may be, perhaps, the only, or one of the very few, anti- Richonne blog posts on the internet.

  • To any Richonne Fans Who Are Reading This
  • If you have not seen my “About” page (and I currently have this stated at the top of the blog itself), I seldom permit dissenting views to be published on my blog.
  • Therefore, if you are a rabid Richonne supporter who leaves me a nasty, rude comment in response to this post, I likely will not publish it.
  • I don’t even bother to read the entirety of such posts – the moment I glance a few cuss words or rudeness in the first sentence of a post that is pending, awaiting me to grant permission to publish it, I hit the “trash can” button and delete it. I don’t even read the entire thing once I have ascertained it’s a vitriolic post.
  • So please, don’t waste your time or mine by composing one.
  • There is an addendum below addressing people on Twitter who were commenting to me how having Michonne, a black woman, in a romance with a white guy on this TV show, was supposedly oh- so- important. I have addressed those types of comments much farther blow (towards the end of the post, before the “Related Posts” section).
  • See also: (Link, off site):  Your Status as a Single Person Is a Diversity Issue

I did an internet search or two in the days after the February 21, 2016 airing of the zombie apocalypse show The Walking Dead episode in which the Rick Grimes character has sex with the Michonne character for the first time.

In the vast majority of reaction I see in blog posts or comments on entertainment sites that discuss “Richonne,” most people appear approving or enthusiastic about this TV show pairing. I cannot fathom why this is so.

I remain perplexed at the drooling, nutty, overboard enthusiasm so many TV viewers have for wanting to see TV characters date each other.

Further, if you dare disagree on these other sites about “Richonne” and admit to disliking “Richonne,” no matter how politely you state your views, many of these “Richonne” supporters become unhinged and vitriolic.

I happen to like the Michonne character and the Rick character – Rick has always been one of my favorite characters on the show. I have nothing against either actor who plays these characters.

However, I do not like or enjoy a Michonne-Rick romantic pairing.

I did not enjoy the show attempting to romantically pair Rick up with Jessie, either.

(Jessie was later killed by being eaten by zombies).

I mention this early on, as a lot of these Richonne fans wrongly assume anyone who dislikes “Richonne” must be a “Jessie – Rick shipper.”

I do not, and did not, enjoy the dating and marriage of Glenn and Maggie.

I like both the Glenn and Maggie characters just fine and certainly have nothing against the actors who play these roles, but I know that having sex or dating would not be my priority in a zombie apocalypse.

Nor do I like, nor did I like, the notions put forth by fans online, which got picked up in the mainstream press, of hoping the show writers would make the show’s Daryl Dixon character a homosexual and pairing him up with a boyfriend, which I wrote about (Link): in a previous blog post.

Nor do I like the idea of Daryl being paired up with anyone – not Beth Greene, not Carol, nor whomever else.

I used to think that the Caryl shippers were the most wacky, vehement, and nusto until I began to see the behavior and devotion of Richonne fans online. They seem to be even worse than the Caryl shippers.

If you bother to read my blog at all, or have been here before, you know the several themes I often discuss, some of which include the following:

How society, (conservative Christians especially), deify and idolize romantic relationships and marriage above all; how adult, single, celibates are treated as though they are inferior to married persons, or how they are simply just ignored.

Almost all TV shows and movies pair all the adult singles up.

Secular and Christian entertainment seldom to never feature a character who stays single, (or one who is celibate), which would be wonderful for people such as me who never married and who practice celibacy. I seldom see people like myself depicted on TV shows or in movies.

These TV shows and many movies continue to depict having sex, being married, or being in a romantic relationship as being the norm, in spite of the fact that there (Link): are now more singles in the United States than there are married couples.

In some nations, more and more adults are opting to live celibate (see (Link): this post).

Thus far on the show, the Daryl character has remained single and apparently celibate or asexual, something which I appreciate. I have blogged on that before, such as:

Unlike AMC channel’s Talking Dead host Chris Hardwick, or even actor Andrew Lincoln (who plays Rick on the show), I do not think that people in the ZA (zombie apocalypse) would, or should be, having sex like dogs in heat or looking for romance.

Romance is a luxury, not a necessity. Ditto with sex, dating, and marriage.

Right now, we are not living in a ZA, and pregnancy can be very dangerous for women now, in spite of advanced medical science.

Having a baby during the ZA would be even more dangerous for a woman, what with lack of medical technology, no doctors, and so on.

(Link, off site):  Why is the maternal mortality rate going up in the United States? (article published: Dec. 2015; by Kelly Wallace)

Excerpt:

(Link, off site):  Maternal deaths in childbirth rise in the U.S.  (article published May 2014)

Excerpt:

  • Maternal deaths related to childbirth in the United States are nearly at the highest rate in a quarter century, and a woman giving birth in America is now more likely to die than a woman giving birth in China, according to a new study.
  • The United States is one of just eight countries to see a rise in maternal mortality over the past decade, said researchers for the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation at the University of Washington in a study published in The Lancet, a weekly medical journal. The others are Afghanistan, Greece, and several countries in Africa and Central America.

We are not even currently in a ZA, and maternal mortality rates have gone up in developed nations such as the USA, so why the hell would any woman risk getting pregnant during the ZA?

In a much older episode of the show, Rick’s wife Lori became pregnant during the ZA, had a troubled delivery, and died as a result, as there were no doctors or hospitals to help her. How quickly all the shippers seem to forget this.

I take it there are no doctors around to prescribe birth control pills in the ZA, so a woman cannot take birth control to prevent pregnancy. Eventually, condoms would likely be used up, and in season 6 of The Walking Dead, we are what, 2 to 3 years into the apocalypse – and do condoms have some kind of expiration date, shelf life?

Masturbation is a solo activity that will not result in pregnancy, but almost nobody ever considers this an option. You don’t need a partner to perform this act. If you absolutely insist on a sex fix, then, whether in the ZA or not, you don’t really need another person to pull it off.

There was a story arc a while back where Beth Greene was in a hospital in Atlanta. There was a scene where she met with a doctor in his office there. The guy had found an oil painting on the street and put it in his office to admire it.

There was another, similar scene where Daryl and Carol spotted an abstract painting on an office wall and discussed its aesthetic merits.

There was yet another episode where Jessie talked to Rick about the owl sculpture she was making in Alexandria. At this time of the show, Alexandria was a safe zone, having a large wall that kept the zombies out, thus affording its residents the time and safety to engage in activity such as making artwork.

Why do I bring this up?

I think one reason the show bothered to put such art on display was to convey a message. That is, prior to the apocalypse, when people have more calm and time on their hands, it makes Art possible.

In calmer, peaceful times, people have the time, resources, and sanity to sit down and compose sheet music, or a composition on a canvas, or to make an owl sculpture.

Even Beth Greene did not usually break out in song, unless she found sanctuary, a place and time of calm, such as in the funeral home with Daryl, or in the prison with Rick and the rest.

Art is, in a way, a luxury in life. Art is not necessarily something people need to survive.

One could perhaps argue that sex is a necessity for the human race, as the race will die out if people do not reproduce. That may be true enough, but on the individual level, people do not need romance or sex to survive.

Sex and romance are little fringe benefits or niceties in life, not necessities.

If I were living in the ZA, my priority would be on finding food, shelter, and avoiding zombies, not on dating some guy in a group I’m hanging out in.

I do sometimes wonder how much these scripted romances are meant to pander to fans who watch the show who are dying for a certain person or another to have a romance.

People, I do believe, need love, but love does not have to come through sex, dating, marriage, or romance. Those are categories of “eros” love, or contain eros.

A person can get through life with Agape or Philo love – platonic, friendship, brotherly love.

We have seen that with Daryl and Carol, who have been friends to this point.

Daryl and Rick have a brother bond.

Prior to the unrealistic, out- of- nowhere couch- kissing (and subsequent implied sex) scene, Michonne and Rick had a platonic friendship pairing that was working just fine.

All of these folks were getting through life just fine without sex or dating.

Recall that I am not a Jessie-Rick shipper.

Having said that:

One of the dumbest arguments I’ve seen put forth by many Richonne supporters on various sites consists of how the Jessie-Rick romance was not plausible because they only kissed 2 or 3 times.

However, Rick and Michonne kissed ZERO times prior to “the couch scene.”

If we are going to argue the validity and realness of a TV romance based on number of kisses we are shown, Jessie has Michonne beat hands down in this area.

I felt that the Rick- Michonne relationship was stronger as a friendship bond. Having these two “hook up” cheapens that dynamic and the Michonne character.

Why can we not see strong, warrior female characters who do not fall for the leading man or have sex with the guy? Why do all women have to be romantically involved with some man in every movie or show?

Why can’t we have a female version of Daryl Dixon who is a lone wolf, who basically stands alone, but who does occasionally bond with the group? Up til the “couch episode” I perceived Michonne as being the female lone wolf.

I think the show writers were hinting for quite some time that Michonne wanted a family of her own, but one can have a family in a platonic sense; one does not have to bed one’s male friend to be his partner or sister-figure.

I do not, nor have I ever, felt chemistry between Rick and Michonne.

I do think the show’s time jump was an issue. I know that the various actors and fans keep pointing out that there was a two month time lapse between the previous “Jessie gets eaten by zombies” episode and the “kissing on the couch” scene episode, but it still reads as too fast and unconvincing.

At least with the Jessie character, we saw small hints dropped here and there, which were quite pointed, and this occurred over several episodes – such as Rick kissing the character at a party; Rick watching her with interest as she walked down the street with her alcoholic husband; Rick later offering to protect her; Rick later kissing her on the mouth in her garage.

With Michonne, we have this what feels like out of no-where, ‘boom, presto, instant romance’ moment, so it was quite jarring and so unrealistic.

For the TV viewer, we just saw Jessie, Rick’s girlfriend, killed a week ago, even though we’re supposed to intellectualize it as being two months.

Emotionally, for viewers like me, Jessie’s death felt like one week ago, no matter how often you repeat “but it was two months.”

(And is Rick so calloused by death now that the deaths of Sam and the teen boy, Jessie’s sons, mean nothing to him?)

Let me also say that it takes people a hell of a lot longer to get over a person’s death than two months.

Someone very close to me died years ago, and it took me several YEARS to get past it, not two months. To a degree, I still struggle with this person’s absence to this very day.

The Rick character may not have been extremely close to the Jessie character, but my God, he did care about her to some extent.

He didn’t just want Jessie for sex, as I saw some argue on other sites  – and what would that say about the Grimes character if there were true? It would say he’s a shallow sleaze bag.

I do not deny that Rick likely wanted to have sex with Jessie, but I have never read him as being the sexist, use- women- and- toss- them- aside player and jerk.

You don’t get over someone you care about, ZA or not, super close to them or not, in a mere two months.

There was basically no build up with the Rick and Michonne romance, unless  you choose to deliberately read things into their prior platonic friendship over the course of the seasons.

The lack of clear foreshadowing made the relationship seem as though it came out of nowhere, and was therefore jarring and unrealistic.

I can see in hindsight that they were wanting us to buy into this or set the groundwork for it, by showing Michonne in a typical “wifey” scenario of having her stand around in a bathrobe, fresh out of the shower, asking Rick to borrow some toothpaste in the “kissing on the couch” episode.

I do not buy that they happened to grasp hands, look at each other, and suddenly, out of the blue think, “Why yes, of course, we should be boyfriend and girlfriend. Let’s lean in and kiss now! We were meant to be together all this time but just never saw it before, shucky darn it all.”

I didn’t find the start of that relationship convincing.

Unfortunately, I have read that the TV show writers intend on carrying out a Michonne-Rick romance from this point forward; the sex Rick and Michonne had is not going to be a one night stand. And so I cringe and dread future episodes of The Walking Dead.

I’m afraid that this Richonne business has ruined a once-enjoyable show for me to a degree, but I will likely continue to watch it, in spite of that.

I regularly criticize Christian culture on this blog for making a deity out of marriage and natalism. Singleness and celibacy are either ignored or depicted as being “second rate”  by Christians. Sometimes, sadly, TV shows and secular Hollywood are guilty of these very things too.

It is possible for men and women to be friends.

It is not inevitable that every male-female friendship end up in sex or romance.

Because Christians wrongly assume that men and women cannot be platonic friends, they create a cottage industry of marriage seminars, books, and sermons warning married men and married women to view all un-married Christian women as being sexual threats.

Many Christians assume that men cannot control themselves sexually, and that all un-married women are un-principled harlots who are actively seeking to bed married men. These assumptions and teachings are actually very demeaning towards both men and women: all men are portrayed as perverted, wanna-be rapists, and all women like loose, smutty sluts.

Therefore, Christians come up with a lot of sexist teachings about women, which result in the isolation of single women. (One of their rules is referred to as the “Billy Graham Rule,” which basically tells Christians to ostracize single women – or this rule has that outcome.)

I will not go into those topics here on a deeper basis, because I have blogged about them extensively in older posts. (See the links at the bottom of this post for more on those subjects.)

Some Christians teach that being single means (Link): not being quite fully in the image of God, or that singles are not quite “as fully human” as married persons are.

Some Christians teach, incorrectly, I might add, that (Link):  having sex is necessary to know God. The Bible of course does not support any of this nonsense – the Bible states in the book of 1 Corinthians (and in other passages) that God respects singleness and celibacy.

Men and women do not NEED sex. Men and women do not NEED romance. Sex and romance are icing on the cake, not the cake.

Single, celibate adults have about zero representation on TV shows or other facets of entertainment.

How sad and infuriating that a once-interesting platonic couple that fought zombies together – Rick and Michonne – are reduced to another starry-eyed romantic couple which goes to re-enforce society’s anti-singles bias.

The Walking Dead is usually more strong when it portrays strangers who come together to form a new family, through at first, bonds of friendship – minus any romance.

Daryl Dixon lost his biological brother, Merle many episodes back. Rick Grimes, of no relation to Daryl, later told Daryl after that loss that Daryl is his (Rick’s) brother.

I’ve explored, in previous posts, how nice it is to see a TV show that promotes the idea that a man can be your brother, even if he is not your blood relation.

Family does NOT have to consist of blood relation, marriage, or a romantic partner of any sort. It’s unfortunate to see Walking Dead kind of drift away from this message by resorting to the old cliche of ‘boy meets girl, boy dates girl.’

Everything is over-sexualized in our culture enough as it is. Romance gets hyped enough as it is. Everyone is expected to be in a romance or to be having sex.

No allowances or consideration is made for people who are single or celibate – whether they are by choice or by circumstance.

It gets rather tiring seeing the cultural narrative of “everyone ends up being in a couple” or “everyone is having sex” in almost every TV show or movie. I hate to see this happen in The Walking Dead, though so far, they have mercifully kept Daryl single. But I wonder how long that will last.

Addendum – edit (Feb 27, 2016) ______

bgPoster
Whitney Houston and Kevin Costner in the movie The Bodyguard

Someone on Twitter sent me a message or two saying how the Michonne character is ground-breaking in that Michonne is a black lady being shown having a romance with a white male character (Rick Grimes).

No, it’s not groundbreaking or even important, or however this individual termed it.

This has been done before – Whitney Houston, who was a black lady, had a romance with leading man Kevin Costner, a white guy, in the movie The Bodyguard.

Television show The Jeffersons had a mixed couple – a white man married to a black lady.

Here are pages that list even more interracial couples:

Now, off the top of your head, please list the number of single, celibate adults featured in movies and TV shows – and I am not referring to priests or nuns.

I was raised as a Baptist, and Baptists do not have a “vow of celibacy” as do the nuns and priests of Roman Catholicism.

On the contrary, Baptists, Protestants, and other Non-Catholic Christians, have no respect for singles or for celibacy; they idolize marriage and romance, just as much as secular culture and Hollywood do.

Why do some people think it’s ‘more’ important to depict an interracial couple – such as Michonne and Rick Grimes – than having single, celibate adult characters on television shows or in movies?

I did a fast web search for ‘single, celibate adults on television,’ and I got no results for that, but rather, several religious pages discussing celibacy from a theological view, as well as several blog pages from my own blog! That is how little singleness and celibacy are discussed in entertainment or culture in general.

If you want to see a black woman in a truly groundbreaking role on television, how about a black woman who is living life as a single, celibate adult?

The world already has enough portrayals of whites, blacks, heterosexuals, and homosexuals in romantic relationships as it is. What we are lacking are positive depictions of singles and/or celibate adults.

Singles and celibates do not get their lifestyles or choices validated in media or in culture, but married or dating couples get theirs validated in every other TV show and movie.

——–
Bella DePaulo often blogs about how culture is obsessed with marriage and romance and how single adults get treated like second class citizens: I’d encourage you to visit her blog and read her many articles on these topics:

—————————-

Related Posts:

(Link):  What Christians Can Learn from The Walking Dead Re: Family, Singleness, and Marriage 

(Link): Reclaiming Stolen Friendships – a blog post criticizing the Sexist, Anti – Singles Christian Billy Graham Rule

(Link): Topics: Friendship is Possible / Sexualization By Culture Of All Relationships

(Link): (Article) Young People in Japan Have Stopped Having Sex – sekkusu shinai shokogun – Celibacy Syndrome 

(Link): How Christians Have Failed on Teaching Maturity and Morality Vis A Vis Marriage / Parenthood – Used as Markers of Maturity Or Assumed to be Sanctifiers

(Link):  Christian Patriarchalists and Gender Complementarians Sexualizing the Trinity and Insisting Sexual Activity is Necessary to Fully Know God (via Under Much Grace blog)

(Link): How the Sexual Revolution Ruined Friendship – Also: If Christians Truly Believed in Celibacy and Virginity, they would stop adhering to certain sexual and gender stereotypes that work against both

(Link): Non-Romantic Nearness, The Billy Graham Rule, and Pope John Paul’s Friendship With a Married Woman

(Link):  Christians Overly Fond of the BGR / How I Learned to Stop Worrying About the Billy Graham Rule and Love Like Jesus by T. Grigg

(Link):  Relationships Of Welcome, Not Fear (Re: How Sexist Christian Views Marginalize and Isolate Adult, Single Women and Maintain Other Stereotypes About Adult Singles)

(Link):   How the Sexual Revolution Ruined Friendship – Also: If Christians Truly Believed in Celibacy and Virginity, they would stop adhering to certain sexual and gender stereotypes that work against both

(Link):   Our Bodies Were Not Made for Sex by T. Swann

(Link):  Discipling Healthy Male/Female Relationships in the Church Part 1 by W. Alsup

(Link):  Brotherly Love: Christians and Male-Female Friendships

(Link):  Evangelicals are Rethinking Friendship and Sexuality 

(Link): Think The “Billy Graham Rule” Would Have Saved Tullian? Think Again… (Billy Graham rule has all Christians treating single adult women as though they are harlots who cannot be trusted)

(Link): I Shouldn’t Need An Excuse To Be A Virgin – (Secular Editorial Defends Virginity – More Rare Than a Unicorn Sighting)

(Link):  Are Single People the Lepers of Today’s Church? by Gina Dalfonzo

(Link):  Salvation By Marriage Alone – The Over Emphasis Upon Marriage by Conservative Christians Evangelicals Southern Baptists

(Link):  Thirty Year Old Woman Kills Herself Due to Being Single and Childless – Churches contribute to this by either Ignoring adult singles or shaming them for being single and childless

(Link):  TV Already Has Enough Token Homosexuals – Daryl Dixon Should Remain a Celibate Hetero Single – and Not All Older Single Men Are Homosexual

(Link): Slut Shaming and Virgin Shaming and Secular and Christian Culture – Dirty Water / Used Chewing Gum and the CDC’s Warnings – I guess the CDC is a bunch of slut shamers ?

(Link):  Christian TV Personality ( Jimmy Evans ) Says You Cannot Meet God’s Destiny For Your Life Without A Spouse = Anti Singleness Singlehood Singles Bias Prejudice Making Idol out of Marriage 

(Link): Marketing Companies Offering ‘Sexy Jesus’ Calendar, Selfies With Jesus

(Link): Hey Ed Stetzer: Opposite Gender Friendships Are Not Sinful – Ed Stetzer’s Advice: “Avoid Any Hint” – More Like: Re Enforce UnBiblical Stereotypes About Men, Women, Sex, and Singles 

(Link):  Really, It’s Okay To Be Single – In order to protect marriage, we should be careful not to denigrate singleness – by Peter Chin

(Link): Jesus Christ was not afraid to meet alone with known Prostitutes / Steven Furtick and Elevation Church Perpetuating Anti Singles Bias – ie, Single Women are Supposedly Sexual Temptresses, All Males Can’t Control Their Sex Drives – (but this view conflicts with evangelical propaganda that married sex is great and frequent)

(Link):  Stop Overlooking Singles in Church By Joy-Elizabeth Lawrence

(Link):  The Islamic Billy Graham Rule – Unmarried Muslim People Are Punished For Being Alone Together

(Link): Virgin Shaming: Hollywood’s Attack on Purity (by B. Bowen)

(Link): False Christian Teaching: “Only A Few Are Called to Singleness and Celibacy”

(Link): Biblical Womanhood Does Not Hinge Upon Marital Status or Parenthood – also: Christians who portray all women as sexual temptresses – by S. Burden

(Link):   Statistics Show Single Adults Now Outnumber Married Adults in the United States

(Link): Stop Pretending Sex Never Hurts, by D.C. McAllister

(Link): Virgins and Celibates are Sexual – Not Asexual and Androgynous – You don’t have to have sex to possess sexuality

(Link): Christian Stereotypes About Female Sexuality : All Unmarried Women Are Supposedly Hyper Sexed Harlots – But All Married Ones are Supposedly Frigid or Totally Uninterested in Sex

(Link):  Lonely Sunday: Single Christians and the Church’s Opportunity by K. Becker

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