I found Zeisler's Feminism and Pop Culture both interesting and a little difficult. As a history, I thought it was very convincing and comprehensive, but as a critique, I couldn't help but think of it as being a little too presumptuous and eager to think that the reader will agree on everything. I didn't see much opportunity for argument within the text and instead thought it a little too demanding.
I'll start with what I found compelling: the history that the book shows is interesting and useful, popular examples of representations of women in all areas of culture. The shows, the ads, the video games: for each era, the book acted as a fantastic base for a jumping off point. These examples are exactly the examples we should be using in our discussion of cultural representations. I particularily found this true in the 70's/80's chapter, spanning cigarette ads, Ms. Magazine, blaxploitation films (a very obvious edition with the Bell Hooks article in mind), of course a mention of Woody Allen's films and ending with Madonna. If there is one quality this text has that others don't is strong base for argument.
What's so disappointing to me, then, is that it kind of panders the arguments it so easily could make. I'm not saying that it was the duty of the author to be persuasive, and less so without presenting the argument demandingly, nor do I think that Zeisler had to make any argument at all; in fact, I think it would have been just as effective of a text if she would have simply presented the works with no embellishment or commentary.
My problem, then, arises with how the work kind of rests in the middle: it doesn't try to make a claim (or at least a new one), but it also doesn't try to be objective in the least. It seems like Zeisler would state a work, then another one, make a comment, and then move on to the next work.
I saw this clearly, again, in the 70's/80's section of the book where Zeisler asks "Was having our own potentially deadly tobacco products really progress? (57)" While I see the dubiousness of cigarette companies and their ads, I do have to note that Zeisler does not beg these same kinds of questions of other pop culture entries such as Ms. Magazine.
Obviously all history and non-fiction works operate under bias, but I suppose I had an issue with this work because it tried to pretend to be simultaneously objective and subjective. However, I do believe its comprehensiveness overcomes that as a text to use for discussion.