In addition to sexual language, neither Selina nor Donald
is afraid to drop the f-bomb as Donald did at a rally in New
Hampshire. Ubiquitous cursing in Veep may surprise first-time
viewers. Yet, the coarse language represents politicians’ apathy
toward political correctness and highlights their artificiality. All
political characters on the show use vulgar language to express
themselves, especially in high-pressure situations. For example,
when Amy (Anna Clumsky), Selina’s problem-solver (Chief of
Staff and later Campaign Manager), signs her own name instead of
Selina’s signature on a condolence card, Selina comes out of her
office in the middle of a meeting and curses her out. In this scene,
cursing is used to illustrate a power shift. Amy does not curse at all
and barely even speaks in this scene, which demonstrates her
inferior position. When Selina returns to her “official meeting” in
her office, the Vice President omits swear words from her
vocabulary, raises her voice an octave, and resumes her meeting
with a smile. Cursing, lashing out, and hurling insults at
subordinates exhibits domination while the absence of vulgarity in
other scenes suggests inauthenticity and politicians’ phoniness in
public spaces.
Series writers appropriate a faux feminism to amplify
politicians’ fakeness by having female characters curse on the
show. Swearing is often viewed as “unladylike” behavior, and there
are many times when Selina swears at her team as a strategy for
reinforcing her power. Cursing in other situations is used to
portray panic or disorganization, however. Therefore, cursing only
humanizes Selina instead of functioning to dismantle gender
norms. It makes her more authentic, which also makes her more
likeable to viewers the same process America is witnessing with
Donald. His authenticity is new and refreshing for some
Americans who aren’t convinced that civilized, honest, and eligible
politicians exist. As a female inhabiting a position of power, Selina
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