I am always behind the curve with TV trends. The Downton Abbey mania has been so bad that even virtual strangers are stopping me on the street telling me how much I will love it. When people find out I haven’t been watching, they are shocked. “YOU, of ALL PEOPLE, will love it.” I take my own sweet time jumping on board a Trend Train. Every night in Memphis, I watched a couple episodes of Downton Abbey, season 1, on my laptop, sprawled across my glorious bed which felt king-size. It’s, of course, as addictive as they say. It’s fantastic. My friend Kate says, “For actors, it’s like porn”, and that is the truth. Every character, every tiny glance, every potent pause … is so filled, so fully realized. Actors at their very best. It’s so much fun. So I am now fully on board, although I am still catching up with Season 2.
This weekend in The New York Times is a very entertaining interview with Shirley MacLaine, who is going to appear in Season 3 as Elizabeth McGovern’s American mother. The picture alone accompanying the article is enough to send me into a tizzy of anticipation. I have always loved Shirley MacLaine, as much for her zany honesty (which was in evidence when she came and spoke at my school) as her acting. She’s a hoofer, a gypsy, those Broadway dancers who know how to survive, who make things happen, who never miss a night, whose work ethic is carved in stone.
Additionally, if you haven’t seen this year’s Bernie, directed by Richard Linklater and starring Jack Black and Shirley MacLaine, all I can say is: do so. It’s in my Top 5 of the year.
I think my favorite snippet from MacLaine’s interview in the Times is the following exchange:
Q. You must come with some ideas.
A. Yeah, it’s called the script.