Interesting article by Margaret Talbot in Atlantic Monthly about the upcoming remake of The Stepford Wives, a film I honestly have to say I've only seen in bits and pieces. Talbot's primary point:
A Stepford Wives that worked as social satire today would be different from its predecessor: It would be at least as much about the project of perfecting children as that of perfecting wives. It would be about the collaboration between ambitious fathers and mothers who believe both in the meritocracy and in doing what it takes to rig it in the interest of their own offspring's Ivy League prospects. It would be about shameless string-pulling to get kids into the right nursery school. Status anxiety about three-year-olds. The subtle assessing of other people's children in relation to one's own.
While I agree that the "perfect children" syndrome so frequently exhibited by many upper middle class families is a deserving target, I must say that there are probably some battle of the sexes visions that could still probably offer a bit of satiric bite. For example, perhaps "The Stepford Wives" should no longer be merely robotic domestic goddesses, but rather representative of the VISA commericals that boldly proclaim "You Can Have it All." Perhaps a modern "Stepford Wife" is the immaculate master of the boardoom as well as the kitchen, the flawlessly effecient woman only hinted at in the Charlie commercials of the same period as the original Stepford Wives: "I can bring home the bacon/fry it up in a pan/and never let him forget he's a man." I don't doubt that there could be some biting social commentary related to the two-income household, the pressures faced by women who have to work a full-time job and then come home to face the laundry and the cooking and the cleaning and the whining (of the kids and hubby to boot, no doubt).