The one stereotype that movies and TV shows CANNOT avoid is that apparently southerners are stupid. And by stupid I mean really stupid, uneducated, and unknowledgeable people. In a good majority of movies and in TV shows they depict all southerners as hillbillies who work on the farm all day long with their cows, horses, and pigs. They are dirty and know nothing about the world outside of their farm and one traffic light town. Or all they are good for is singing songs about beer and hard times. Take Spongebob
for example, there is a particular episode where the hillbilly family comes to town and they are amazed at all the technology and the cars and lights. In a movie entitled Country Strong, a fantastic and heartfelt movie, all the songs being sung in the movie and the entire premise of the movie is about their struggles and about drinking beer with friends. There are tons of movies and TV shows; including Grays Anatomy, The Walking Dead, The Amanda Show, and many others, that include the dumb hillbilly stereotype.
This stereotype has proven to be offensive time and time again when creators of movies and TV shows show complete insensitivity to the southerners out there. Personally I know people from the south and they’re smarter than I am so clearly this statement is wrong if at least one, even though there are many many more, does not fulfill the stereotype. Southerners have grown up in a different culture and different life styles than many others so they value different things. Because they value different things and have grown up in a different lifestyle than most have that does not mean that they are less educated than the person who is writing the TV show or the movies being produced. It is an arrogant statement to make and yet it continues to be produced in TV and film.