MiamiHerald / Recently I was in an improv workshop, and we played a game in which one person stood in the middle of the circle and stated a fact about herself. Everyone who identified with the fact was supposed to run out of the circle and switch places. When it was my turn, I declared proudly, “I love Hallmark Christmas movies!”

One person stepped out of the circle. One. That circle was filled with liars.

The Hallmark Channel was the No. 1 cable network among women ages 25 to 54 in the fourth quarter of 2016, and its ratings have seen even more growth in 2017. While other cable networks have been losing viewers, the Hallmark Channel has been a success story. Theories of the ratings spike range from viewers seeking an escape from the daily fresh hells of 2017 to viewers seeking to embrace the “traditional values” of a country made great again.

But I understand why people in my workshop felt reluctant to admit a love of Hallmark Christmas movies. Entertainment made for women is devalued so easily and frequently that no one remembers “Sex and the City” had as much to do with the rise of HBO as “The Sopranos.” Even Netflix (creepily) judged its own viewers when it recently tweeted, “To the 53 people who’ve watched ‘A Christmas Prince’ every day for the past 18 days: Who hurt you?”


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