No woman's land

Canadian producers hope to film what happens when a town's entire female population vacates.

By Carol Lloyd
Published January 18, 2007 11:10PM (EST)

Pee-stained toilet rims, children drinking maple syrup from the bottle, beer parties, gun practice, belching contests. One only has to let one's mind wander to see where the inspiration originated for the planned Canadian Broadcasting Corporation show called "A Week without Women." The London Free Press reported that the show's producers have been scouring Canada to find a small, scenic and, most importantly, enthusiastic town to shoot a new reality series in which all the women would agree to skip town for seven days and leave their jobs, children and other loved ones behind.

Of course, the show will no doubt get some mileage off playing up different male and female stereotypes and how things can fall apart without women's civilizing influence and unappreciated domestic work. The idea is reminiscent of "A Day Without a Mexican," an agitprop indie satire that tried to explore what would happen to California if all Mexicans summarily disappeared. But the production company Paperny Films seems to be emphasizing the sociological potential for the series. Creator of such high-minded series as "Crash Test Mommy" (in which an inexperienced usually male caregiver is put in charge of some kids for a weekend) and "Kink" (which explores alt sex communities) as well as more serious documentaries about arts, medicine and history, Paperny is promoting the new series as a "large-scale social experiment" which they hope will illustrate the "Canadian way of life" and "show the true nature of male/female relationships in the 21st century."

Hmm...okay, it may be dumb, but I'll tune in. To be fair, before the chaos ensues, the show could also be called "a week without half the adults," which would be a challenge for any town to handle.

Carol Lloyd

Carol Lloyd is currently at work on a book about the gentrification wars in San Francisco's Mission District.

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