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velvet goldmine

You've mentioned before that you thought it was obvious that Samantha was going to die. I didn't agree then, and now that I've seen some of the last few episodes again, I still don't. The only question after the series is if she would realize what a bore Smith is. She did.

The first movie was a fairly logical extension of where they might have been, and I guess the second is considered to be a waste of time.

Either way, it's odd that you would decide that the movie(s) conflict with where the characters were positioned at the end of the series. It's a completely predictable series of events that a woman like Miranda would find her career in the backseat during a period of time in which her child is young she has an ill family member AND equally believable that as a few years go by those responsibilites ease (for good and for sad reasons) and the career and even the glamour come creeping back in.

It's even more true to the story that Mr. Big would have the freak-out he did in the first movie, and that most of the film would revolve around Carrie being depressed and pissed off at him. Nothing could be truer to the series. That was, like, the main story arc every season.

We've covered Samantha. I'm not interested in Charlotte, though her husband is charming as can be.

Well, I haven't thought about BP for 10 minutes, so I that's something.

El Jefe

Lance,

While someone needs to start accumulating your stuff on the politics of economics lately, nice to see some meat-and-potatoes character analysis. Think what you may of Samantha but as for Kim Cattrall, um ... gracious. Speaking as one of those fellow apologetics, none of the others are near so easy on the eyes. Nor, with the exception of what Charlotte kept bottled in her doll's-house concept of living, did any have the gusto, even if that was often sadly misused to keep the messier emotions at bay.

On a tangent, sad to note the passing of Rue McClanahan, the Samantha of the silver foxes.

vg,

It is a good BP break, isn't it?

MaryRC

What you mentioned about sequels being disappointing is interesting, i.e. that it's not just the sequels that others write to famous stories that fail to satisfy, but often the sequels written by the original authors.

You mentioned Tom Sawyer showing up in Huckleberry Finn where he more or less ruined the last few chapter of the book. Even as a kid I was baffled at the childish and solipsistic way he was allowed to act out his fantasies at Jim’s expense, and shocked to discover that Jim was free all along. I’ve wondered why Twain did it, basically sullying one of his most popular creations in that way. Was that his intention -- was he sick of Tom -- or did his publishers tell him he had to bring back Tom to make the book popular?

Anne Shirley and Jo March too – as girls and young women they’re independent, free-spirited and fighting to make their own way in the world. But once they’re married, their creators can’t think of anything for them to do and they turn into matronly bores. Anne drifts through the later books like a wraith, saintly but distant. You wonder what all that feistiness in the early years was for, if she’s just going to become Mrs. Dr. Blythe taking soup to the poor. And Jo does get to be a novelist and run a school but she doesn’t seem to have much fun.

I guess all my examples come from characters who are children and I suppose it must be hard for their creators to help them make the transition to adulthood and still be interesting in the eyes of the readers who loved them.

El Jefe

Should have added that there's one essential (as in "the very essence of") difference between Samantha and Blanche. (That comes with the further straight male apologia that I had active and lively grandmas in the Eighties who liked their programs of choice :) Blanche, when we meet her, is back to being a Samantha-like star of her own life because shes lost George, the love of her life, and now take's the starring place in part to fill the enormous empty space she feels beside her, and within her. Which led on occasion to some of Rue McClanahan's best work.

Nancy

The movie may be bad, but the reviewer also displays internalized misogyny in spite of her presenting herself as a defender of true feminism.

Tom Sawyer's re-introduction into Adventures of Huckleberry Finn was just about the worst possible way to end Huck's story that Twain could have devised The "evasion" section almost ruins the entire story. The fact that it doesn't indicates just how great the first two-thirds of the book is.

But I never understood Tom Sawyer's lovable scamp reputation, and I don't see how he changed in any way from his book to Huck's. In fact, one of the nastiest things Tom ever did was in his book - he allows his aunt to go on believing he is dead and even spies on her grieving for him - and even THEN doesn't tell her the truth. What kind of human being would actually do something like that?

And in fact, I would suggest that it was the public's love for Tom Sawyer in spite of his sociopathy that caused Clemens to write the Evasion section of Huck's book. He was convinced the public would be pleased by reading another lovable Tom Sawyer prank - and if a boy could still be lovable after playing such a heartless trick on his aunt (who was for all purposes his mother) why would anybody have a problem with him risking Jim's life and freedom because he wanted to have fun pretending to free Jim when Jim was already free?

The main value of The Adventures of Tom Sawyer IMO is that it is a prequel to the Huck's story.

Interesting paragraph in this piece about the gradual decline of Tom's popularity in favor of Huck's:

http://etext.lib.virginia.edu/railton/tomsawye/nostalgia/movies/tsmovieshp.html

Lance

MaryRC,

Good reminders about the sequel lives of Jo and Anne. At the Louisa May Alcott and Monsters discussion I went to last month, Alcott's biographer, John Matteson, said Alcott didn't enjoy writing the books she is now most famous for. He said she called them "moral pap for children" and preferred the thrillers and horror stories she wrote under pen names in order to make money. Which reminds me I better write up that post soon, as in today.

Nancy, Ralph Ellison has an interesting defense of the Tom sections of Huckleberry Finn in an essay in Shadow and Act. He argues that that section actually saves the story because it's where Huck finally comes down on Jim's side and against slavery. Tom's prank is a bratty game but Huck's resolve to go to hell if that what it means to help Jim escape is real and truly ennobling.

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