Thinking Fans argue pros and cons of OLTL’s Grey Gardens spoof: Marilyn Henry applauds, “It never occurred to me it was anti-woman at all. I was happy to see two of the show’s vets get a big chunk of air time in an imaginative bit of spoofiness” … while Steve says, “This spoof fell flat for me because it wasn’t about Blair or Dorian at all. It was about Todd. And we saw that Blair was worthless because she did not have her dream man” … and much more. See Comments below.
By Marlena De Lacroix
Remember Nola’s fantasies on Guiding Light in the early 80s? She imagined herself as the heroine in movies like The Wizard Of Oz, Wuthering Heights and Gone With the Wind. These fantasies had, from the start, been part of the character of a poor but spunky girl living in her mother’s Springfield boarding house. These movies were all classics, so when GL actually went out and produced the fantasy scenes (starring Nola) the audience automatically knew what they were watching.
Yesterday on One Life to Live, we were shown Dorian actually dressed up as a weird old woman in a housecoat and Blair wearing some kind of headscarf in a surreal incarnation of La Boulie filled with disorder, trash and cats. Was this a movie fantasy? Blair never had movie fantasies before and she’s been
Daytime used to distinguish itself by doing social issue stories on the mentally ill. How times have changed! How revolting it is yet again to see a network’s misogyny on display.
on the show nearly twenty years. How organic to her character is this?
I’m sure there were many OLTL viewers across America who didn’t know what they were watching. What the hell was this supposed to be? I didn’t know. Was it an “in” joke?
So I looked it up on Soapnet. It turns out that Dorian and Blair were in a spoof of Grey Gardens, which last was a 2009 HBO TV movie; before that a 2006 Broadway musical (earning Tonys for its two lead actresses and its costumer designer), and before that — the original source material — a cult documentary made in 1975. It was about two ladies — mother, Big Edie and daughter, little Edie — who lived in a decrepit mansion in swanky East Hampton, Long Island; were aunt and cousin to Jackie O, and … who just happened to be severely mentally ill. They lived and died amid the absolute squalor of their home, where their dozens of cats urinated everywhere.
You’d think this was a nightmare no soap would want to spoof. Very interesting … hmm … making fun of mentally ill women on OLTL. Hmm, why does this sound familiar?
And then it hit me. Addie. A year ago, I wrote a very, very angry column about the way Blair’s mother Addie, also Dorian’s sister, was being treated. For the last seventeen years of OLTL, she had been in and out of a mental hospital. Last year, we were assured she was “cured,” but then she started doing “funny” things around La Boulie, like wearing scuba gear to dinner, and, funniest of all, sleeping with David Vickers, the show’s hunky satiric clown doofus. In that column I was very angry that Addie, the character we had always been told was severely mentally ill, had blithely been transformed into someone to be laughed at.
<=Pamela Payton-Wright as Addie/ABC Photo
How the disgusting current writer/production regime of OLTL likes to laugh at mentally ill women! To do it once was bad enough, but twice?
This is daytime television! Daytime used to distinguish itself by doing social issue stories on the mentally ill. (Think Viki’s DID story — multiple personalities treated as serious mental illness in 1993-95 by Michael Malone.) How times have changed! How revolting it is yet again to see a network’s misogyny on display. Throw in Todd raping Marty twice and constantly making fun of hag Dorian (Robin Strasser, who got stuck in a housecoat, giant glasses and a funny hat here), and OLTL is continuing to make itself a hornet’s nest of woman hate.