This weekend, we watched Detachment, a very heavy Tribeca Film Festival drama with Adrian Brody, Marcia Gay Harden, James Caan, Lucy Liu and Joan Holloway… You might not be familiar with Joan Holloway. Joan is a [very] strong female character from the outstanding T.V. series Mad Men. You might know her as Joan Harris, her married name. It’s a common mistake. In any case, Joan is portrayed by the fictional character Christina Hendricks.
Joan is not the only character who’s often confused for their alter-ego. House‘s Thirteen for example. I once saw an interview with Hugh Laurie in which he referred to Remy “Thirteen” Hadley as Olivia Wilde. How disrespectful is that… THAT’S NOT HER NAME! My kids? No exception… I watched Cowboys and Aliens with my son not too long ago. When the character Ella Swenson first appeared on screen, I said out loud “Hey, that’s Thirteen“… And you know what my son said? “Papa, that’s not her name“! Well you don’t know Jack shit, boy! I’m all for children’s wild and creative imagination [I can't pay rent yet, Papa; I don't know how to use a pressure cooker, Papa; I don't know how to prepare your tax return, Papa], but some things are just plain wrong. He was grounded: no homeworks for him. That’ll teach him when he’ll try to get a decent job with only a high school degree under his belt.
Granted, it can get messy… Take Emma Peel. Most Gen Xers will be reminded of Uma Thurman from the god-awful 1998 movie adaptation of the superlative 60s T.V. series The Avengers, when in fact, she’s the wry, cat-suit wearing feminist heroine and fashion icon often confused for Dame Diana Rigg. Are you still following me?
It takes a sharp mind to be astute enough to make the difference. And a great deal of respect not to confuse a heroine for her alter-ego. I can make that difference. Zooey Deschanel… She’s not “Summer” from 500 Days of Summer, or “Jess” from the New Girl T.V. series. I know that, because I’m not delusional, nor batshit crazy. And because Zooey and I, we’re tight.
P.S. Lisbeth Salander, I didn’t purposely omit you. You’re in a league of your own… Rooney Mara tried her best, Noomi Rapace did a much better job, but no one can f*ck with your name, and it’s spelled R-E-S-P-E-C-T.
ADDENDUM : Thirteen. British GQ. Bouncing Boobs. You be the judge.