Monday, April 17, 2017

Patti Page Got The Last Word In, Last Night, On "Feud!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!"

                                 I am afraid this series, which started out so strong, is slowly falling apart.  Because no real footage exists of what work Joan Crawford did in "Hush...Hush, Sweet Charlotte," so many liberties were taken.  Bette Davis as a producer?????????  Was that for real????????  I never heard that, before.  Nor is it anywhere on the film's credits.  Is it?????????????????

                                   Thank God for Patti' Page's classic rendering of the title song during scenes!!!!!!!!

                                   Casting is now scraping bottom of the barrel with the pale not even imitations found to portray Joseph Cotton, and Agnes Moorhead.  I am almost glad they did not feature Mary Astor!!!!!!!!!!!!!

                                     And how about that faux set for Houmas House???????  It looked like a bad Tara knockoff, used by the most middle of Middle Class Georgians for a wedding!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  Who are they kidding???????????????????

                                     But the real question is, how much control does Jessica have over this show??????  Because it seems to be All About Joan!!!!!!!!!!!!!  What about Bette in "The Nanny," "The Anniversary," and "The Whales Of August?????????"  Not even a hint of Joan in "Berserk," sporting her legs in a circus ringmaster outfit, and someone playing Judy Geeson playing her crazy daughter, Angela?  Angela, by the way, shows what being sent to private school can do to a girl!!!!!!!!!!  Especially if your mother is Joan Crawford!!!!!!!!!!!!!

                                     And too much sexual contretemps between Bette and Aldrich!!!!!!!!  OK, it might have happened, but do we have to watch it?  Imagine, what is imagined, as it is watched!!!!!!!!!  My skin crawls, right now!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

                                      Also, who cares about B.D. marrying some loser, named Jeremy, at sixteen?????????

                                     The show is losing ground.  There are things that should be covered, but will they?????????  Next week is the last episode, so all will be known soon.

                                      But this I can promise you!!!!  It will feature Joan and "Trog!!!!!!!!!!!!"

                                      I cannot WAIT to see that love match, darlings!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Videolaman said...

Eh, this episode didn't annoy me much. I was relieved to see Lange continue her pivot to a more comprehending take on Joan, as opposed to the SNL-level impersonation she gave for the first half of the series. I thought she nailed the frustrations of Joan on the set of "Charlotte" quite well, while never letting us forget Crawford misread the entire situation and largely dug her own grave. Ryan did his due diligence: even the lesser-known nuggets of "Charlotte" lore were dramatized for us (Bette really was awestruck by Joan's one-take letter-perfect taxi entrance, and infuriated that she could not duplicate it herself).

I wasn't expecting to see anything about Bette's later films, because this episode meant to tie up the Joan/Bette "Charlotte" trainwreck in a neat package. Painstakingly casting a new Joseph Cotton or Agnes Moorehead for what amounted to 50 seconds of screen time wouldn't have been worth Ryan's effort, so I can't really fault that. The Cotton clone did a passable voice impression,and honestly who the hell today could possibly play the legendary Moorehead? I was kind of relieved they didn't try to show her in character, and just kept her in the background.

At least the promos for next week portrayed a dead-on accurate Trog costume, which implies we'll see snippets of Bette's later films too. The B.D. wedding material seemed superfluous, but I think the agenda was to clarify Bette's lesser-known upcoming Mommie Dearest ordeal. The series will end with Bette outliving Joan by some years: whatever happens, its bound to be a packed episode with lots of ground to cover in just 47 minutes. Anniversary, Nanny, and Whales may not even make the cut: you'd need two more episodes to hit all the highlights (lowlights?) of latter-day Davis.

Dead Ringer? Harvest Home? Madame Sin? Burnt Offerings?

Where Love Has Gone and her feud with Susan Hayward?
Susan: "When you're dying of thirst you'll drink from a mudhole"
Bette: "You have devoted your life to mud and filth!"
Not to mention Joey Heatherton as Cheryl Crane!

Death On The Nile? To Maggie Smith:
"Let us leave this place: its beginning to resemble a mortuary!"

And dear Lord, who could forget Bunny O'Hare? With Davis and Ernest Borgnine as bank robbers disguised as hippies in a motorcyle gang?

Joan might have had the last laugh after all: she died first, but Bette circled the drain quite a few more times before getting her plum swan song Whales Of August (during which my beloved Lillian Gish tortured her to death by proxy for Joan).

The Raving Queen said...

Had no idea Lillian and Bette had issues.
I am looking forward to next week with "Trog."
And curious about how it will end, though.
realistically speaking, it should have ended
after wrapping up on 'Baby Jane.'

Videolaman said...

It was so long ago, my memory is dim, but there were a lot of stories circulating from the Whales set about Bette being a royal PITA, trading heavily on her "harmless little old dying legend" status. She resented Lillian for being so long-lived, healthy, and charming to everyone (not so different from her hatred of Joan). Bette did everything she possibly could to insult, demean and undermine Gish during filming.

But unlike Joan Crawford, Lillian Gish was not insecure in the least, and could not be so easily manipulated. Her kind and sunny personality concealed an iron will, and if anything she had even LESS patience with on-set bullshit than Bette did. So she knew exactly how to get Bette's goat, while seeming completely naive and innocent.

Every time Bette would act up and disrupt filming of Lillian's moments, Lillian would smile patiently and wait for Bette's next big scene. She would let Bette puff herself up to deliver a crucial line, then pretend to be suddenly struck with dementia, completely "forgetting" her own lines and where her marks were. This would drive Bette absolutely mad, because everyone on set bought Lillian's "senility" act, becoming more solicitous to her over Bette. Not once would Lillian overtly challenge Bette, or give her any reason to attack her. This continued for some days, until Bette suddenly began cackling wildly, embraced Lillian, and told her "You BITCH! I should have known coming from silents, you could play dumb and outshine me without a word!" From that point forward, they kept a respectful truce, and Lillian's apparent IQ shot up 100 points overnight.

For the rest of her life, Lillian would get cagey when questioned about this, but her evasions were even more amusing. Gish was one of the driest, funniest, no-nonsense women to ever survive Hollywood. Nobody fucked with her for long.

The Raving Queen said...

I had a feeling Lillian was tough, after seeing
her in "The Night Of The Hunter." I was amazed
that Bette had such energy on the set. She did
not her best among an elderly cast!