Thursday, July 18, 2013

The Bridge: Sonya and introverts

I was going to write this post about how Sonya from FX's new show The Bridge is very introverted and how I can identify with her. But I checked wikipedia to see how to spell her name correctly and I found out that she isn't so much really introverted as she has Asperger's syndrome. Though that's kind of like a heightened form of introversion. So I wasn't too far off. In fact, just a quick skim of some articles suggests that we don't know a lot about introversion and Asperger's.

There seem to be some overlapping traits; isn't comfortable around people, quiet, reflective (why Sonya is probably a good detective). But there don't seem to be many agreed upon definitions as to what introversion is and how far away it is from being autistic or having Asperger's. That link I posted right above suggests that maybe these things exist on a scale where different people have varying degrees of one characteristic or another.

I identify a lot with Sonya because of the many introverted traits she possesses. Like her, I'm uncomfortable around people I don't know and I enjoy my solitude. But even though I'm far from a great people person, I seem to be much more able to navigate social situations than Sonya. She has a very difficult time communicating effectively. And it often comes off as her being cold or indifferent towards people. But whereas I can often understand when I'm doing that and act to avoid it, Sonya doesn't seem aware that she's having that effect. Often times I want to react the way she does. But I guess I care enough about how others are going to react to me and what they think of me that I resist.

I like how they've handled Sonya so far. You don't seem many characters like her on tv (Abed from Community is the only other one that comes to mind). Part of that is just that the nature of tv and characters is that they have to interact at least a bit with other people. Another part of that is introverts or those with Asperger's aren't very well understood by society at large. So I hope that beyond just being an interesting character on a tv show, Sonya can expose more people to different personalities and show that it's ok to be different.

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