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Designing Women

Was it supposed to be a funny liberal show? Seems very social conservative in it’s values.

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by Anonymousreply 251Last Monday at 3:45 PM

Julia was a Republican cunt

by Anonymousreply 105/20/2021

OP, go back to Parler. You belong there, not here.

by Anonymousreply 205/20/2021

R2 ?????

by Anonymousreply 305/20/2021

Parler, R3 is where like-minded despicable, desperate trolls gather.

by Anonymousreply 405/20/2021

OP, the show was funny, but annoying at times.

R1, Julia, the character, was a diehard liberal Democrat. The actress who played her may have been Republican, but the character was known to espouse much of what Clinton-like Democrats espoused in the late 80s and early 90s.

by Anonymousreply 505/20/2021

It seems socially conservative now because it premiered 35 years ago. The Thomasins were and are liberals, but not the modern, "woke" kind.

by Anonymousreply 605/20/2021

It's a great show that never really got its due. Only won one Emmy for hairdressing,. All of the four plus Meshach were Emmy worthy. Dixie was practically giving master classes in acting. I think the show was too ahead of its time for a lot of people. It's humor a little too sophisticated.

Linda Bloodworth Thomason is underrated. Evening Shade is another masterpiece.

by Anonymousreply 705/20/2021

It was a bit condescending too. I remember an episode where Julia is in a book store and smugly asks for a copy of Tess of the D'Urbervilles. She says do you have it? All I see is cards, calenders, and other stuff like that. She's so smug. I wanted to say if you are such an intellectual you'd know to just walk to the fiction section and look under Thomas Hardy.

(worked in a book store at the time. Triggered.)

by Anonymousreply 805/20/2021

"in it’s values" Oh dear.

by Anonymousreply 905/20/2021

Alice Ghostley was very funny as Bernice—and they didn’t overuse her.

by Anonymousreply 1005/20/2021

The episode about Julia driving into porn magazine stands was pretty right wing.

by Anonymousreply 1105/20/2021

Horribly overrated show. Dixie Carter was a rabid conservative in real life and often tried to get her (predictable) 'liberal' speeches rewritten.

by Anonymousreply 1205/20/2021

Thank you, R7. Designing Women should have a roomful of Emmys. It was the best thing on television at the time. Each actress was outstanding. Way ahead of its time.

by Anonymousreply 1305/20/2021

No it wasn't, R11. In the '80s and '90s, feminists were actually against women being in porn and prostitution, as they considered it exploitation. Not like the whatever-wave feminists of today who consider sex workers to be heroes.

by Anonymousreply 1405/20/2021

I like the show but Julia's rants have not aged well. Privileged-white-woman-who-thinks-she's-better-than-everybody-else rants that just reaffirm her status and privilege.

She was always smug and thought she peed perfume. And that was WITHOUT a Dixie Carter song.

by Anonymousreply 1505/20/2021

Stop making Deaigning Women a thing. It’s not good nostalgia

by Anonymousreply 1605/20/2021

Bernice Clifton was my ❤️ fave

by Anonymousreply 1705/20/2021

Julia Duffy should’ve been given another season. They needed to fire Jan Hooks

by Anonymousreply 1805/20/2021

It was a liberal show, especially Julia. The problem is that there is little liberalism on the left today. Leftist wokism IS NOT liberalism.

by Anonymousreply 1905/20/2021

What’s an et tu fe?

by Anonymousreply 2005/20/2021

I loved all the women, but you just have to hand it to Delta Burke's character Suzanne Sugarbaker. The woman was goddamn funny.

There have been other funny, outrageous women along the way, e.g., Karen Walker from Will & Grace; Patsy from Absolutely Fabulous; even Jean Smart from the short-lived High Society in 1995. The divine Suzanne surely ranks right up there among the greats.

by Anonymousreply 2105/20/2021

R21, she didn't WRITE her lines. None of them did.

by Anonymousreply 2205/20/2021

It was a real phenomenon when it debuted and Delta Burke was the breakout star. It was the time of the New South and the emerging southern liberal, personified by friend of the Thomasons, Bill Clinton.

The show has not aged well, unlike The Golden Girls, because so many of the stories are driven by then current events at the time and they just don’t resonate with audiences which don’t remember those events. Murphy Brown suffers from the same problem.

by Anonymousreply 2305/20/2021

A lot of sitcoms from the 80s in general didn't age well. The Golden Girls was one of the few that did. It's become a meme thanks to Betty White's resurgence in popularity. It helps it was funny and all of the ladies bounced off each other well. The preachiness and topical nature of Designing Women meant it wasn't going to age well. I don't think Cheers, Family Ties or The Cosby Show aged well either.

by Anonymousreply 2405/20/2021

I love all of the characters except BJ

by Anonymousreply 2505/20/2021

They did a wonderful and moving episode about the AIDS epidemic with a very young Tony Goldwyn as a young man dying of AIDS. It had a predictable scene where Julia tells off a bigoted frau, but in this case, it was powerful and felt real.

by Anonymousreply 2605/20/2021

And I’m a sucker for Julia’s “The Night The Lights Went Out in Georgia” Speech—with Suzanne’s silent eavesdropping.

by Anonymousreply 2705/20/2021

I love it when Julia, Mary Jo, Allison, Anthony and Bernice stayed the night at Carlene Dobber’s new apartment on the wrong side of Atlanta. A total laugh fest. And that damned homemade potpourri Carlene made somehow flavored the hotdogs! 😝

by Anonymousreply 2805/20/2021

There was no topical nature of Designing Women. Did you even watch the show? Golden Girls probably did more issue oriented shows than DW did.

Designing Women's humor was more character driven. It was more sophisticated. I love the Golden Girls, but their humor was more slapstick and mainstream. Middle America didn't have to feel intimidated watching them. Although both shows became very juvenile and dumbed down in their last respective seasons.

Designing Women is not really a mainstream show. In many ways, it is the real precursor to a show like Sex and the City. You could see DW being on Amazon or Netflix today. I don't think it's really aged at all.

by Anonymousreply 2905/20/2021

R22. Yes, I understand the Designing Women didn't write the scripts, but they were great actresses and consistently delivered so wonderfully. DW writer Linda Bloodworth Thomason and the other writers deserve a world of credit. They were all great, but there was something about Suzanne that was so fabulous. So glad Jean Smart has gone on to such success.

R23 R24. I always liked Designing Women so much better than Golden Girls, which I could take or leave. In my opinion, Designing Women has aged very well, and I still don't care all that much about Golden Girls--I mean, it was a good show, but not nearly as great or memorable as Designing Women. Of course, I'm talking about the first five seasons of DW with the original cast.

by Anonymousreply 3005/20/2021

Bernice was comedy gold

by Anonymousreply 3105/20/2021

Designing Women: Suzanne going bowling in her designer high heels being told in her words that she had to "rent clown shoes worn and stained with the sweat of 60,000 poor people" was priceless.

by Anonymousreply 3205/20/2021

I’ve been binge watching the first season on Hulu. The premiere episode was surprisingly funny and the second one had Julia’s night the lights went out in Georgia speech. I’m about 2/3 of the way through this season and it’s gotten really wobbly and weak.

I read online today that Hulu chopped the shit out of them so now I’m understanding now why it’s been hard to follow some of the plot lines.

I checked online for a list of the good episodes so I’m gonna focus on watching those.

by Anonymousreply 3305/20/2021

Not a funny show. Always felt as though it had a chip on its shoulder, as though it kept trying to prove, somehow, that it was good. Overacting, "serious" scripts for a comedy, issues-oriented -- but it really never worked well. The only good thing about it was Jean Smart.

by Anonymousreply 3405/20/2021

They pushed Doug Barr as the hunk on the show but it was Richard Gilliland that was sex on a stick.

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by Anonymousreply 3505/20/2021

Dixie wasn’t a rabid conservative, she was more of a moderate Democrat.

The clip OP posted was of Julia having a meltdown after trying to keep it together at a conference in NOLA that went awry. Mary Jo fucked a married man and Suzanne and Charlene spent the weekend getting shit faced.

by Anonymousreply 3605/20/2021

R36 Moderate Republican, along the lines of Susan Collins or Olympia Snowe.

by Anonymousreply 3705/20/2021

DW...One of the best shows ever.

by Anonymousreply 3805/20/2021

Yesterday’s liberals are today’s conservatives.

by Anonymousreply 3905/20/2021

You a Yankee, OP?

by Anonymousreply 4005/20/2021

Dorothy Zbornak was an eighties liberal in the same vein as Julia Sugarbaker, but somehow with her it hasn’t aged the same, at least not for me. Maybe it was because Julia’a defining personal characteristic is a sort of aggrieved imperiousness? She was such a starchy conservative woman in basically every way except her politics.

I would also say that Mary Jo only succeeded as a character because of the charms of Annie Potts. She was very thinly sketched - she mostly just had “women in the eighties” issues happen to her and struggled to make it to the office on time.

The problem with Suzanne was that she was about 3 different women over the course of the show. She started off as a man-eating Scarlett O’Hara for the eighties type, then became a “non-PC” straight-talking gold digger type, and ended being a half-step down from crazy Bernice. Also, and this might be controversial, Suzanne and Julia never felt to me like credible sisters, in the way that against all odds, you bought Sophia and Dorothy as mother and daughter. The Beaumont Driving Club committee actually nailed it - whatever she was Suzanne just wasn’t a southern aristocrat the way Julia was.

For our times, Anthony reads as too gay for his character not to be gay.

However, Jean Smart, as she inevitably is, was note perfect as Charlene.

by Anonymousreply 4105/20/2021

R41 I totally bought them as sisters. I know multiple sets of siblings where one is smart and genteel and the other is flighty.

by Anonymousreply 4205/20/2021

R34 is SPOT ON.

by Anonymousreply 4305/22/2021

[quote] Dixie Carter was a rabid conservative in real life.

[quote] Dixie wasn’t a rabid conservative, she was more of a moderate Democrat.

EXCUSE ME....?! I said numerous times over the years that I was a "libertarian".

by Anonymousreply 4405/22/2021

If you want the uncut episodes, you'll have to spring for the DVDs

by Anonymousreply 4505/22/2021

[quote] If you want the uncut episodes, you'll have to spring for the DVDs

Please, let's not get into another cut versus uncut debate.

by Anonymousreply 4605/22/2021

This one is worth it if the scenes make the difference between making sense and not.

by Anonymousreply 4705/22/2021

[quote]OP: Seems very social conservative in it’s values.

Oh, dear. Oh, dear.

Seems very illiterate in its education.

by Anonymousreply 4805/22/2021

r33, it wasn't Hulu who cut them. Those were the versions that were sold into syndication to allow more room for commercials. I believe they played on Lifetime for years.

Hulu was just too cheap to spring for the originals.

You can tell the syndicated ones because the intro is a merged version of the opening credits from different seasons. A mixture of those drawings of the homes of the ladies from the early seasons and real photos of the stars from later seasons.

The original credits are in the link below.

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by Anonymousreply 4905/22/2021

Network version credits for later seasons

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by Anonymousreply 5005/22/2021

Sony is a mess when it comes to licensing its shows out to streaming. There's a bunch of sites that claim to have this show along with [italic]The Facts of Life, Married with Children[/italic] and other library shows you can already watch on disc, but none of them have the whole shows and none of them have the same episodes.

And with this show and [italic]Silver Spoons[/italic] they seem the most reluctant to let uncut episodes out to any format but DVD.

by Anonymousreply 5105/22/2021

People should keep in mind that network tv from that time was very different from what you get today on streaming services. They had to churn out 22-24 episodes a season as opposed to today where they might do a run of 10-13 episodes. So sometimes there were gems and sometimes there were duds. Keeping this in mind, DW always relied on the strength of the chemistry of the cast (even in the later seasons with some different actresses).

But I agree, the Julia character seems way too preachy and in your face for 2021. But in the late 80s/early 90s, we needed her bitchy tirades.

by Anonymousreply 5205/22/2021

[quote] But I agree, the Julia character seems way too preachy and in your face for 2021

Too preachy and in your face for 2021? Are you living in the same reality as everyone else? The only difference is today she would be a 20-something going on preachy twitter tirades, with much less logic, and going to protests.

by Anonymousreply 5305/22/2021

At least they made the show when second-wave feminism was still ongoing.

by Anonymousreply 5405/22/2021

The night the lights went out in Georgia.

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by Anonymousreply 5505/22/2021

I love the season 6 opening credits with Ray Charles.

by Anonymousreply 5605/22/2021

Love when Suzanne did her baton routine at the fat farm to show how she exercised. Done to her acapella version of "St. Louis Blues".

by Anonymousreply 5705/22/2021

I always loved Delta’s guest appearances in the later season.

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by Anonymousreply 5805/22/2021

R14: Suzanne ended up coming off better than Julia in that episode. She hated what she saw in that BDSM porn mag but she was more reasonable in her criticisms.

by Anonymousreply 5905/22/2021

R34. You are wrong. Designing Women is one of the best shows ever.

by Anonymousreply 6005/23/2021

A Designing Women thread on Datalounge. Groundbreaking.

by Anonymousreply 6105/23/2021

Julia and Suzanne were very different but the show also made it clear that there was a large age gap between the two. Their father got another woman pregnant when Julia was a child, so he divorced their mother and married his pregnant lover. The child born of that union was their half-brother Clayton. After Clayton was born the father divorced his second wife and remarried Perky. Suzanne was born only after all that drama and was at least 14 years younger.

Not that unusual for siblings to be very different when there is such a large age gap. They were almost two different generations.

by Anonymousreply 6205/23/2021

I liked Suzanne when she pointed out the other characters' hypocrisy. In the episode where Mary Jo is agonizing over JD being unemployed and a stay at home boyfriend, I thought Suzanne's takedown of Julia and Charlene was brilliant when she pointed out that they, for all their open-mindedness and lecturing about status not being important, had both chosen extremely affluent husbands for themselves.

by Anonymousreply 6305/23/2021

I hated that show. Too sophisticated? No. Too much the work of churlish scolds.

Ahead of its time? Maybe. It predicted the human type of the sanctimonious white bitch who will rant for 11 nonstop minutes at some server who dared bring a plastic straw with her order of a Diet Coke.

by Anonymousreply 6405/23/2021

R49's comment explains why they have Anthony in the credits from the start and from what I recall he wasn't introduced until well into the season.

And I agree with R41 about Jean Smart, she gave a solid performance in each episode. She deserved an Emmy more than the others.

by Anonymousreply 6505/23/2021

[quote] Ahead of its time? Maybe. It predicted the human type of the sanctimonious white bitch who will rant for 11 nonstop minutes at some server who dared bring a plastic straw with her order of a Diet Coke.

No, that was [italic]Maude[/italic], that babykilling breeder bitch.

by Anonymousreply 6605/23/2021

This was topical, r23, and it's aged pretty well.

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by Anonymousreply 6705/23/2021

Wow, she really was a cunt.

by Anonymousreply 6805/23/2021

The show was NOT a phenomenon when it debuted, R23.

by Anonymousreply 6905/23/2021

I agree with R69, that first season was weak. They didn't hit their stride until season 3.

by Anonymousreply 7005/23/2021

I had forgotten just how beautiful Delta Burke was in the first two seasons of the show.

by Anonymousreply 7105/23/2021

[quote] The show was NOT a phenomenon when it debuted, [R23].

That's because CBS, then owned by Larry Tisch, moved it to a bunch of different time slots. Viewers for Quality Television launched a "save the show" campaign, they left it on Monday nights where it eventually blossomed, and the rest is history.

by Anonymousreply 7205/23/2021

I thought the episode where Charles Frank got so much shite for being (what would later be called) metrosexual that he transformed himself into a redneck image ("Isn't this what you wanted to see!") a good lesson in futility of trying to be someone you're not for acceptance.

by Anonymousreply 7305/23/2021

Carlene (Jan Hooks), Alison (Julia Duffy) with two teenaged boys in a vehicle.

Julia, Mary Jo and their dates in a vehicle.

Anthony and Bernice in a vehicle.

All at a drive in movie showing a French movie with subtitles. Hilarity ensues. I 💗 it!

by Anonymousreply 7405/23/2021

"Goodbye My Pants"!

by Anonymousreply 7505/23/2021

A show like DW would never make it past the first season today. At least back then they did give shows a little time to grow, work out the bugs, and gain an audience. The same thing happened with Seinfeld--almost cancelled at first and then look at the mega hit it became.

I am really annoyed with Netflix that seems to cancel shows after 2 or 3 seasons (like Bloodline), especially shows that seemed to have a 4-6 season type of story arc in the beginning. It makes me not want to invest in a new show because what's the point?

by Anonymousreply 7605/23/2021

So what's your point, R72? The poster said it was a phenomenon from its debut and it absolutely wasn't.

by Anonymousreply 7705/23/2021

The point is CBS tried to kill the show and failed.

by Anonymousreply 7805/23/2021

[quote] Their father got another woman pregnant when Julia was a child, so he divorced their mother and married his pregnant lover. The child born of that union was their half-brother Clayton. After Clayton was born the father divorced his second wife and remarried Perky. Suzanne was born only after all that drama and was at least 14 years younger.

Who was the father and the mother of their retarded brother Jim from the spinoff where Suzanne goes to Washington DC to take over her late husbands seat in Congress?

by Anonymousreply 7905/23/2021

Designing Women was far better than the Golden Girls ever was. DW has aged very well. The show was well-acted, well-written and well-produced and remains one of the best shows ever. The first five seasons were outstanding.

by Anonymousreply 8005/24/2021

At least this show isn't owned by that fucking Disney.

by Anonymousreply 8105/24/2021

Julia was so patronizing when talking to or about Anthony. He was like her pet project, the Negro she was going to rehabilitate. At least Suzanne was open about her views and came across as more forthright instead of the soft bigotry of condescension Julia excelled in.

by Anonymousreply 8205/24/2021

I have been trying to find a clip of when that main actress proclaims in an over the top manner during one of her speeches: “Because we are SUG-A-BAKAAAAAAAAAAS!!”

Anyone recall that?

by Anonymousreply 8305/24/2021

It’s true, R14. My 36 year-old cousin considers herself a feminist, and she supports women with OnlyFans accounts. She thinks it’s women taking control of their own bodies. For all her “wokeness”, I still wonder how she rationalizes that these women do this because men create the market for it. Anyway, Designing Women was good at the time. Now it just sort of hangs cases a collection of preachy speeches.

by Anonymousreply 8405/24/2021

*as a, not cases ^^

Damn iPad keyboard.

by Anonymousreply 8505/24/2021

Jean Smart and Delta Burke were wonderful and the show was dreadful after they both left.

by Anonymousreply 8605/24/2021

I liked Anthony the most when he was in drag in several episodes. Otherwise, it was embarrassing to watch those women condescend toward him, the worst being Julia. They should've made the character a proud gay man instead of a confused-looking hetero man bossed around by four belles.

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by Anonymousreply 8705/24/2021

I think Annie Potts is delightful, but I think Mary Jo could have been a young Black interior designer and it would have given the show a more interesting dynamic.

by Anonymousreply 8805/24/2021

R88 - as if there were Black interior designers in the South in the 80s. Black people hauled the furniture.

by Anonymousreply 8905/24/2021

[quote]I think Annie Potts is delightful, but I think Mary Jo could have been a young Black interior designer and it would have given the show a more interesting dynamic.

Fuck you.

by Anonymousreply 9005/24/2021

Which episode was it where Suzanne tells Anthony they might have been close friends if he had been born white? And Anthony asks her how about if she had been born black instead and Suzanne replies with something like, "Oh yes, and I would have been the first black Miss America because, you know, that Vanessa Williams doesn't count."

by Anonymousreply 9105/24/2021

The episode where Anthony gets into the Beaumont Driving Club (much to Suzanne's chagrin and sucking up to the snobs, the funny part of the episode) and at the end Julia informs Anthony that he was a token so they could stay on the PGA tour was totally cringeworthy. He was like "no shit, you dumb white bitch. You must think I'm dumb not to know that".

by Anonymousreply 9205/24/2021

Julia expected Anthony to be offended by Suzanne in blackface, but he wasn't because she at least tried to look realistically Black. He was capable of showing nuanced thought when the writers really applied themselves.

by Anonymousreply 9305/24/2021

Annie, Delta, Dixie and Jean...outstanding actresses. They made the show so memorable.

by Anonymousreply 9405/24/2021

Writer Linda Bloodworth-Thomason knew all four actresses before hiring them for Designing Women. Her casting was brilliant.

Delta and Dixie had worked together on the hilarious "Filthy Rich" in the early '80s.

Annie and Jean on a movie together, and Linda thought they were so funny together. I watched a video with Linda where she mentions the movie (a comedy), but I forget the name of it.

by Anonymousreply 9505/24/2021

R91, that episode is from the first season and is called "Stranded". Suzanne and Anthony end up taking refuge from a snow storm in a motel room on their way to Design Expo in St. Louis.

by Anonymousreply 9605/24/2021

Suzanne asked a valid question though. If they were supposed to be playing The Supremes, what exactly was offensive about wearing dark makeup? Not the kind of blackface Al Jolson or that cunt Judy Garland wore, but dark makeup.

by Anonymousreply 9705/24/2021

Annie and Jean did an episode of Linda's show Lime Street where they played sisters who were jewel thieves. Linda thought they had amazing chemistry and when the show was cancelled offered them Designing Women.

Lime Street was a star vehicle for the late Samantha Smith. The Golden Girls did an episode based on her story.

by Anonymousreply 9805/24/2021

Annie and Jean had that Ethel and Lucy chemistry. Like the time Mary Jo lost a string of pearls in the salad bar and the 2 of them desperately searching through it. Charlene plunging her arm into the salad dressing and the server comes up, she deadpans "Is this French or Thousand Island? I can never tell."

by Anonymousreply 9905/24/2021

[quote]Lime Street was a star vehicle for the late Samantha Smith.

Fuck you R98. Why don't you come with me to Catalina on my boat?

by Anonymousreply 10005/24/2021

[quote] Suzanne asked a valid question though. If they were supposed to be playing The Supremes, what exactly was offensive about wearing dark makeup? Not the kind of blackface Al Jolson or that cunt Judy Garland wore, but dark makeup.

That episode had that talentless cunt Kim Zimmer in it, so that pretty much spoiled it for me.

by Anonymousreply 10105/24/2021

They weren't even singing to a Supremes song, it was Diana's first solo hit. Even as a kid I knew that and wondered how they could have made such an obvious mistake . I was surprised Mary Wilson didn't publicly complain.

[quote]Julia was so patronizing when talking to or about Anthony.

Julia was patronizing to everybody with the exception of Mary Jo. There were times when it seemed like she didn't even like Charlene. And Mary Jo and her would go out of their way to point out how stupid she was. That spa episode in particular.

.

by Anonymousreply 10205/24/2021

[quote] Lime Street was a star vehicle for the late Samantha Smith. The Golden Girls did an episode based on her story.

It gets weirder: it was their competition on ABC in 1985.

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by Anonymousreply 10305/24/2021

Thank you, Ray Don.

by Anonymousreply 10405/24/2021

Just think: if that little girl hadn't died, then this show might never have happened. Unless, of course, ABC just canceled it either way.

by Anonymousreply 10505/24/2021

Excuse me. Excuse me!

by Anonymousreply 10605/24/2021

[italic]Filthy Rich[/italic] seemed to get caught in the middle of the Coke-Columbia buyout because after that it just faded out.

by Anonymousreply 10705/24/2021

Linda should've brought Nedra Volz onto DW for more than one appearance.

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by Anonymousreply 10805/24/2021

If Anthony had been gay he would’ve been emasculated and become the fifth designing woman. It wouldn’t have worked.

by Anonymousreply 10905/25/2021

[quote] There were times when it seemed like she didn't even like Charlene.

Suzanne was really nasty to her, constantly making classist remarks like "so when's the big bus from [italic]Hee Haw[/italic] getting here" about her family coming to town.

by Anonymousreply 11005/25/2021

If anyone saw the last horrendous episode of Pose, it did seem like Dominque was totally channeling Julia Sugarbaker. It made me think, since Pose is ending, they should just have the four main trannies do a series called Redesigning Woman, where they use all the same scripts and keep it set in the 80s and just reboot the whole series that way.

by Anonymousreply 11105/25/2021

That sounds misogynistic as fuck, R111.

by Anonymousreply 11205/25/2021

Redesigned Women.

I'd watch it.

by Anonymousreply 11305/25/2021

I was binge watching season 3 today and I noticed they had the wrong closing credits on one of the episodes.

by Anonymousreply 11405/26/2021

Whoever is in charge of doling out streaming rights to Sony shows is asleep at the wheel.

by Anonymousreply 11505/26/2021

I had to stop watching after the episode where Anthony ends up bedridden and staying at Suzanne's. On a phone call to Julia he tells her it's "Like that movie "Whatever Happened to Baby Jane" And I'm Jane!". No, dear-you're Blanche. I felt insulted as a viewer for any number of reasons-that an obviously closeted homosexual would not know that he was Blanche, that he said Jane for the sake of a not even that funny joke, and that a gold plated scold like Julia let it slide. There's much I will tolerate, but not pandering and sloppy writing.

by Anonymousreply 11605/27/2021

[quote]Yesterday’s liberals are today’s conservatives.

R39 you must be very far-left if you consider DW (or anyone to the right of you) to be conservative.

by Anonymousreply 11705/27/2021

R116 that bothered me, too. I've wondered if Meschach messed up the line and they just didn't bother correcting it. There was another episode (the Anita Bryant one) where Julia and Mary Jo dress up/play as 'Blanche' and 'Jane' in a community theater production of BABY JANE, so they must've been familiar with the movie.

by Anonymousreply 11805/27/2021

This show was nothing but racist transphobic TERF propaganda just like [italic]The Golden TERFs[/italic] and [italic]The TERFs of Life[/italic].

[italic]Who's the Boss[/italic] was better than all those shows put together and proves that you can make a classic TV show with nothing but white people. At least the Italians were actually Italian. And deep down inside, Judith Light recognizes that gay men are women and lesbians are men. It's the only show Embassy ever made that shouldn't be banned for racism. I'd rather watch shows with no Black people at all than shows that promote racist stereotyping and transphobia like those three TERF operas and the rest of the Embassy bilge machine.

by Anonymousreply 11905/27/2021

Upon rewatching the whole series on Hulu, it's a mixed bag. For every funny episode, there are about 5 that are mediocre or downright annoying. It wasn't something I caught as a kid when I'd watch them in syndication. The Julia/porn episode is an especially ridiculous one. She comes across as the most sex negative and puritanical psycho in that one, but then you have that great episode where Tony Goldwyn gets AIDS and she tells off that awful religious right cunt.

The cast was excellent with Delta Burke being the most consistently funny. It didn't matter if she was fat or thin, she delivered and then some.

The addition of Jan Hooks and Julia Duffy wasn't as awful as many claim it to be. Their big mistake was making their characters a bit too one note. Jan was the goofball and Julia was the frigid, snooty bitch. Even still, I remember them being incredibly funny in a few episodes. It was Judith Ivey in the last season who just sort of stood there and didn't make much of an impression.

By the end, they really didn't seem to give two shits about Mary Jo. In the last two seasons, I swear she walks in with the same excuse 500 times about giving her dog a flea dip. It can almost become a drinking game.

by Anonymousreply 12005/27/2021

Anthony is a racial stereotype. A Black man working for a bunch of Southern white women still leaves a bad taste in the mouths of anyone not a racist.

Now that you mention it, most Black sitcoms are racist and unfunny.

by Anonymousreply 12105/27/2021

[quote] There was another episode (the Anita Bryant one) where Julia and Mary Jo dress up/play as 'Blanche' and 'Jane' in a community theater production of BABY JANE, so they must've been familiar with the movie.

I think you mean Anita HILL.

by Anonymousreply 12205/27/2021

Tomato, tomahto, R122. They're both TERF bitches.

There are no non-men. This stupid TERF show should have been called [italic]Designing TERFs[/italic] because they refuse to admit they are gay men trapped in the bodies of heterosexual "women."

by Anonymousreply 12305/27/2021

When Dixie started singing I switched it to the Golden Girls. That episode where she's living out a fantasy by becoming Jizelle or something maybe me run for the moonshine.

by Anonymousreply 12405/27/2021

Yet you didn't mind the transphobia of having Dorothy, who is obviously a man, say "yes" when two of those other wrinkled old TERFs sing "Mr. Sandman"?

by Anonymousreply 12505/27/2021

The finale episode is easily one of the worst things to ever hit the airwaves. It was insulting bad.

by Anonymousreply 12605/27/2021

Some of you people are crazy judgmental. Designing Women was a goddamn funny show. Period.

by Anonymousreply 12705/27/2021

R126: That wasn't their best work. That wasn't even the best parody of [italic]Gone With the Wind[/italic]; it's not a patch on Carol Burnett's take.

by Anonymousreply 12805/27/2021

Since you insist on throwing it around-what the fuck is a TERF?

by Anonymousreply 12905/27/2021

It's what anyone who won't admit that gay men are women and lesbians are men is, R129. Homosexuality is gender dysphoria, and so is the belief that there is any such thing as a non-man. There are no non-men, and that's a fact. Only TERFs believe there are. Homosexuality is sexualized TERFery, and even the word "sex" is TERF propaganda right out of the disco ages.

by Anonymousreply 13005/27/2021

I love Designing Women; it's one of my favorite shows. However, when I think about DW, it's only with the original cast: Annie, Delta, Dixie, Jean and Anthony.

by Anonymousreply 13105/27/2021

[quote] Julia, the character, was a diehard liberal Democrat

I dunno. I think it wasn't really meant to be uber political (well, until the Thomasons' friend ran for president). I don't think it was meant to be uber woke as much as it was against the Gingriches and the backwards GOPers of the day. There were definitely some traditional views and values in there as well - as evidenced by a few of Julia's rants, Charlene wanting to be a minister, etc.

by Anonymousreply 13205/27/2021

Like I said, R132, it was a TERFy TERF show for TERFy TERFs.

by Anonymousreply 13305/27/2021

nein

by Anonymousreply 13405/27/2021

[quote] I love Designing Women; it's one of my favorite shows. However, when I think about DW, it's only with the original cast: Annie, Delta, Dixie, Jean and Anthony

Thanks for nothing.

by Anonymousreply 13505/27/2021

R129, please don't feed the Dudegash.

by Anonymousreply 13605/27/2021

R135. Bernice was lovely, daffy, funny, etc., but I could have done without her. The original cast of Annie, Delta, Dixie, Jean and Anthony are still my favorites. I don't believe Bernice was in the first season.

Although I always remember the exchange between Bernice and Julia in the fast food restaurant, in which Julia was appalled to find herself:

Bernice: "Julia, what kind of fish is this?" Julia: "I don't know, Bernice. It's square fish."

by Anonymousreply 13705/27/2021

[quote] Bernice was lovely, daffy, funny, etc., but I could have done without her.

I liked her a lot but in small doses. DW started to rely on her too much when things got bumpy.

by Anonymousreply 13805/27/2021

[quote] I don't believe Bernice was in the first season.

Actually Bernice was in the first season. She was in the episode "Perky's Visit" as a friend of Julia and Suzanne's mother, Perky.

But I agree, she was better in small doses.

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by Anonymousreply 13905/27/2021

Suzanne showing up to the bowling alley wearing her brand new Maud Frizon high heels and being told she has to rent bowling shoes--and in exchange had to leave her Maud Frizon heels with the bowling alley attendant:

"Excuse me. If you expect me to leave my brand new Maud Frizon high heels with you because you're worried about me walking off with these bowling clown shoes that are stained with the sweat of 60,000 poor people, let me assure you: Don't worry about it!"

by Anonymousreply 14005/27/2021

[quote]Bernice: "Julia, what kind of fish is this?" Julia: "I don't know, Bernice. It's square fish."

You're conbining Bernice's Sanity hearing and the Burger Guy episodes.

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by Anonymousreply 14105/27/2021

^combining.

Burger Guy clip.

Meaning the recycled this joke like Whatever Happened to Baby Jane.

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by Anonymousreply 14205/27/2021

They also had Charlene tell the don't-end-a-sentence-with-a-preposition joke twice.

[quote] CHARLENE: That reminds me of that story about a Southern woman who goes to this la-dee-da cocktail party in New York City. She turns to a Northern woman and says, "Where y'all from?" The Northern woman looks at her and she says, "We're from where we don't end our sentences with a preposition." So the Southern woman looks at her and says, "Oh...well then, where y'all from.......BITCH!"

by Anonymousreply 14305/27/2021

Bernice is the best receptionist evah

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by Anonymousreply 14405/27/2021

I’m binge watching, and boy did their appearances change between seasons three and four.

That was the year Suzanne went from being beautiful to matronly and Charlene was pregnant in the first episode of the new season.

by Anonymousreply 14506/10/2021

It was funny until it became a soapbox for the Julia character , lecturing weekly.

by Anonymousreply 14606/10/2021

One of the best late-season moments was Mary Jo finally standing up to Julia.

by Anonymousreply 14706/10/2021

Did we ever get to see anything that they actually fucking designed and how bougie was it?

by Anonymousreply 14806/10/2021

Dixie's real life sanctimoniousness served the character well but must have made life on set a bit tough to take. She did Master Class on Broadway and really wasn't too good, easily the worst of the three ladies who did it there (Zoe Caldwell and Patti Lupone were the other two--Patti was best as she had more energy and was more Callas-like).

Delta was always a bit fat, even at her thinnest, and you can see wardrobe trying valiantly to compensate for it with huge hair, wide belts, jackets with shoulder pads to make her middle look slimmer...sometimes they use the clothing to draw the figure on her that she was supposed to have. The fact is she didn't hold up her end of the bargain. Being cast as the sultry/sexy one on a show, especially back then, meant you were supposed to look a certain way. Suddenly the show was "why does the flabby chick have all the sexy dialogue?"

And she was always a limited actress, despite her LAMDA training. It was weird to see her undistinguished performance in Steel Magnolias on Broadway. The production was built around her presence, but somehow the whole thing was off. A lot of it was miscast (though Burke wasn't).

Delta did speak up for the gays though, even back in the day (her sister is a lesbian), so we should be grateful she's an ally.

Dixie ultimately voted for Republicans who were hateful to gays--and people knew it back then--so include her in the scorn that is coming toward the word "Dixie" in our culture these days. Don't confuse the role and the person.

Julia Duffy should've been wonderful, and she does the best she can with what they give her, but it's like they didn't care for her or there was too much on set strife or they never nailed down her character. Something's off. She's also a bright spot in the theatre, does little off-Broadway things occasionally, but has never had a vehicle of a play for herself like Carter and Burke did.

The worst is probably the best actress of all the replacements, and certainly the best theatre actress: Judith Ivey, fumfuhing her way through her lines at taping as if it were still camera blocking day. Did the scripts change that much while they were in production? Did they use cue cards or a teleprompter?

by Anonymousreply 14906/10/2021

The scorn towards "Dixie" is because it sounds like "dicks' and because one of the verses of the song has the word gay in it.

by Anonymousreply 15006/10/2021

Sorry, forgot to sign it.

by Anonymousreply 15106/10/2021

R149 In my binge watching I have noticed a lot of Teleprompter reading. And not just one actor in particular but a lot of them and a lot of the episodes they’re always glancing off to the side to see what the next line is.

by Anonymousreply 15206/10/2021

[quote] Dixie ultimately voted for Republicans who were hateful to gays--and people knew it back then--so include her in the scorn that is coming toward the word "Dixie" in our culture these days.

Do we also have to cancel other celebrities that were moderate Republicans? Is Gay Icon Joan Rivers now cancelled?

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by Anonymousreply 15306/10/2021

Joan Rivers is not canceled because we never really knew what her stance on Trump was. Yes, I know she said she liked him when he was a private citizen in New York and she won Celebrity Apprentice, but she died in 2014, so we never got her opinion on what she would have thought of him in The White House.

Because she died long before his candidacy and election of 2016, I'm giving her the benefit of the doubt that she would have thought he was a fraud, corrupt and the worst president ever. Joan was outspoken, but she could recognize a dumb-as-shit crook like Trump.

by Anonymousreply 15406/10/2021

R154 We don't know Dixie's view on Trump either, since she died in 2010.

by Anonymousreply 15506/10/2021

I fucking loved Dixie Carter.

by Anonymousreply 15606/10/2021

She would’ve been a die hard Trumper.

by Anonymousreply 15706/10/2021

R149 dumb question - what does fumfuhing mean?

by Anonymousreply 15806/10/2021

R158 Paraphrasing and stumbling, which will wreck the rhythm of a well written line, also adding uhs and ohs and vocal fillers to buy a little time to think of it or look at the cue card. Slowing way down in a long speech because they can't rattle it off. It's when you can tell they don't quite know it.

Watch Judy and Shelley Berman here fumfuhing...they barely make it through. It's at the end of the episode as an outtake.

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by Anonymousreply 15906/10/2021

R159 makes sense! Now I need to find some of her doing that on Designing Women, although I think I remember it.

by Anonymousreply 16006/10/2021

[quote] Delta was always a bit fat, even at her thinnest, and you can see wardrobe trying valiantly to compensate for it with huge hair, wide belts, jackets with shoulder pads to make her middle look slimmer...sometimes they use the clothing to draw the figure on her that she was supposed to have. The fact is she didn't hold up her end of the bargain. Being cast as the sultry/sexy one on a show, especially back then, meant you were supposed to look a certain way. Suddenly the show was "why does the flabby chick have all the sexy dialogue?"

At what point does Coca-Cola, then-owner of Columbia Pictures, take any of the blame?

by Anonymousreply 16106/10/2021

Not sure, R161. Does Coca-Cola make the candy bars Delta used to gorge herself on? A friend who worked in tv in that era told me a tale of seeing Delta more or less passed out napping in a food coma with candy bar wrappers on the floor, across her chest etc as she lay on the couch.

by Anonymousreply 16206/11/2021

Well, Delta was nothing more than a big ole hefer from the fields of Central Florida. Although she somehow managed to win Miss Florida.

by Anonymousreply 16306/11/2021

It was very popular and very liberal for its time - which was pre-Wokedom.

by Anonymousreply 16406/11/2021

...huge hair, wide belts, jackets with shoulder pads". This was fashionable in the 80s.

by Anonymousreply 16506/11/2021

I was living in the UK when it was on. It was a big hit there.

by Anonymousreply 16606/11/2021

The character Julia had warmth and believed in equality, the actress, not so much. She was a conservative republican - so in my opinion can go fuck herself. she's dead and out with the fucking trash.

by Anonymousreply 16706/11/2021

[quote] Not sure, [R161]. Does Coca-Cola make the candy bars Delta used to gorge herself on?

It's got the one of the same ingredients and it's in her character's last name.

by Anonymousreply 16806/12/2021

Julia was the most unlikeable character on the show. Couldn’t stand her.

by Anonymousreply 16906/12/2021

Do you think Dixie Carter's ancestors owned Nell Carter's ancestors?

by Anonymousreply 17006/12/2021

I've been watching the reruns on Antenna or Cozi (whatever mesothelioma channel runs them every night.) They're in the final season with Judith Ivey right now. As a kid I really disliked the Julia Duffy season and thought the Judith Ivey year was much better. Watching them again I've softened somewhat on the Duffy season and even though I love Ivey and think she meshed with the cast better the show was pretty terrible that final year. You can tell Potts and especially Carter are completely checked out. I always assumed Ivey's stammering delivery was a character choice. Never thought about them using cue cards but maybe they did.

And I know Sheryl Lee Ralph is a gay ally and has done a lot of good work fundraising for AIDS/HIV over the years but I didn't like her character and she didn't add anything to the show. A love interest for Anthony could have been a good storyline but the Vegas showgirl marriage plot was weak and gimmicky. Is it true Jackee Harry was meant to be his love interest but Carter refused to work with her or is that just Datalounge urban legend? They introduced her in the finale of the Duffy season and it seemed like she would reappear but obviously it didn't happen.

by Anonymousreply 17106/12/2021

Jackée's biography should be called [italic]Everybody On My Show Was A Bitch But Me[/italic].

by Anonymousreply 17206/12/2021

Jackeé always comes across like an over the top and shrill drag queen. Pairing her opposite the fey Anthony would have made the character even less convincing as a straight man. At least Sheryl Lee Ralph looked and sounded feminine. She was lovely and a good actress but the Etienne role was a thankless one.

by Anonymousreply 17306/12/2021

Off-topic a bit and apropos of nothing, I enjoyed the "fumfuhing" in the clip referenced by R159. Laughed out loud at some of Judy's quips. Thanks R159.

But on-topic, I think Delta looks better with a little but of weight on her. She was gorgeous but looked emaciated when she guested on Who's the Boss as Tony Danza's conniving neighbor. Sorry, can't post a pic at the moment.

by Anonymousreply 17406/12/2021

Here's one, r174

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by Anonymousreply 17506/12/2021

Another:

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by Anonymousreply 17606/12/2021

R175 R176 Thanks! Those are the ones I wanted to post but didn't know how.

by Anonymousreply 17706/12/2021

Dixie isn't being fairly represented here.

She did an interview with D.C.'s gay periodical Metro Weekly back in 1998, and she speaks clearly for herself. I'll paste part of it below, but the whole interview is really interesting. (Did you know Designing Women addressed AIDS because creator Linda Bloodworth Thomason's mother died from it?)

Anyway, here's a telling excerpt. I admire Dixie Carter for her answers. She is totally forthright about being set in her ways and traditionally minded, but she is also very thoughtful and empathetic and expresses a desire to change. She sounds more open to legalizing gay marriage than she does to not dressing children in pastels—so her heart was in the right place, and her traditionalism was in some ways superficial.

In the end of this excerpt, she again emphasizes that she is stuck in her ways but she says her more progressive children are working "to get me to where I should be"—that word choice indicates she really was aware of what is right, and it's just hard for her to adapt. That's something to work with and not to shun. Some people are able to check in with themselves and determine what is objectively moral versus immoral and can change their subjective mindsets based on that, and some people can do that to a point and make the recognition but have a harder time adapting to radical societal norm changes. My mother once told me that old people have to die because at a certain point, most people reach a maximum level of being able to change their worldviews, and the world will not stop changing so the people just have to go because they can't integrate radically new norms into their realities.

MW: Let me be more specific. What about the possibility of gay marriage?

CARTER: That’s hard for me, because I’m very old fashioned, very old-timey. So that idea is hard for me. On the other hand, maybe the most loving marriage that I’ve ever seen is a gay marriage. It has not been codified as such by the church, but it is a marriage. And has been for years and years and years. But to answer your question, I have to work through what marriage means — and the first thing in my mind goes to is that marriage is for the procreation of the race. It’s a sacrament to unite people so that they can begin a family and have children. But Hal Holbrook and I got married at an age past when we can expect to have children. So here I am in a very happy marriage that I think is fine. So if I feel that way about my marriage to Hal, why would I have a problem with a gay marriage? Still, it’s hard for me. I’m very traditional.

MW: Another issue that’s been raised recently in a big way is called “reparative therapy,” where gay people are saying they’ve been cured through various ministries led by the right wing.

CARTER: I think the word cure is insulting, isn’t it?

MW: Yes. And of course the danger is that it suggests homosexuality is a disease, which it’s not.

CARTER: Tell me, are these people who are “cured,” are they ever going to be happy?

MW: It’s hard to say.

CARTER: Well, down the line, it will be discovered whether or not they will be happy. I hate to use this corny expression, but everybody has got to find out who they are and what their needs are. And putting yourself in a straight jacket for appearance’s sake is not going to get it. But as I’ve said, I’m old-fashioned. I’m still trying to work through [the idea of] women preachers. I am a person for whom change is difficult. I don’t agree with the way that children are brought up now for the most part. I can’t bear to see them in those little tennis shoes they put on children. Please. And those vile colors. I just want to see little babies in white. I want to see them in pastels. I don’t want to see little children in red and black. You know? I don’t want to see them in those orange and black things that they wear. I feel like such an anachronistic person, but I am slowly coming around — my children are slowly getting me close to where I should be. Maybe by the turn of the century, I’ll be up with everybody else.

by Anonymousreply 17806/12/2021

Here's the full Metro Weekly interview. It's a really good read.

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by Anonymousreply 17906/12/2021

Delta Burke was a world-class beauty when she was young, both when she was thin and when she had put on a little weight. She really had a timelessly gorgeous face that would have been appreciated in any era with any kind of styling. I almost never find women dressed in 1980s clothing, hair and makeup to be attractive at all but Delta was still stunning from underneath all that mess.

It may have been to her detriment, because she was cast because of her appearance, but she was hands down the funniest person in the cast. She was the laugh machine, and her over-the-top delivery and expert comic timing drove the writers to make her character more and more of a loose canon and also more vulnerable. She is one of the funniest sitcom actors of all time in my opinion just because of her hilarious delivery. But she was always popularly just thought of as a beauty queen, and after she gained so much weight, she was written off. I feel like she was totally wasted. She should have had a long career as a comic actress. I wish she could be revived by a new streaming series but I think she has done too many strange things to her face to be watchable, tragically.

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by Anonymousreply 18006/12/2021

Da da da daa daa

BOOM PA-TOOM BOOM PA-TOOM!

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by Anonymousreply 18106/12/2021

R181 I miss her!

by Anonymousreply 18206/12/2021

R182 She was so fucking funny.

by Anonymousreply 18306/12/2021

She NOT DEAD!

by Anonymousreply 18406/12/2021

R180 She was gorgeous!

by Anonymousreply 18506/12/2021

[quote] But on-topic, I think Delta looks better with a little but of weight on her. She was gorgeous but looked emaciated when she guested on Who's the Boss as Tony Danza's conniving neighbor.

Being on that show would make anybody lose their appetite.

by Anonymousreply 18606/12/2021

I'm a Bernice Clifton advocate.

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by Anonymousreply 18706/13/2021

[quote] —Miss Valdosta Seed and Grain

I can't believe I need to say this, but it's "Miss Valdosta FEED and Grain", r185.

by Anonymousreply 18806/13/2021

Lord, I’’m mortified! I forgot my title!

by Anonymousreply 18906/13/2021

[quote]Is it true Jackee Harry was meant to be his love interest but Carter refused to work with her or is that just Datalounge urban legend?

They did work together. Jackee did a two parter that was supposed to be a launching pad for her permanent role the next season, but she clashed with Dixie during those two episodes so much that they dumped her. This was coming on the heels of Jackee being put on The Royal Family after Redd Foxx's sudden passing and much to Della Reese's chagrin.

Around the time Jackee was let go, Sheryl Lee Ralph (who was a huge fan of the show) phoned Linda Bloodworth Thomason to tell her that she needed a regular black female cast member. Thomason hired her to play Etienne.

by Anonymousreply 19006/13/2021

Sheryl Lee Ralph and Jean Smart also worked together in a Robert De Niro movie around this time called Mistresses.

by Anonymousreply 19106/13/2021

R190 Some people think Dixie was being racist but I think it was more likely Dixie didn't want to work with Jackee, due to the stories of Jackee and Marla Gibbs feuding on 227. The show had managed to survive Delta and I'm sure Dixie figured Jackee would be Delta 2.0.

by Anonymousreply 19206/13/2021

Here's a pic of Delta looking rather svelte in the early days of Designing Women:

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by Anonymousreply 19306/13/2021

This one:

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by Anonymousreply 19406/13/2021

And this:

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by Anonymousreply 19506/13/2021

Even this:

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by Anonymousreply 19606/13/2021

Maybe not this:

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by Anonymousreply 19706/13/2021

Funny:

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by Anonymousreply 19806/13/2021

I’m sick of talking about Dixie. Let’s talk about Annie Potts’ character. It’s been years since I’ve seen the show. Did she bring anything to it? I just remember everyone being better than Dixie.

by Anonymousreply 19906/13/2021

Annie Potts horribly overacted in the pilot. I wanted to drown her.

by Anonymousreply 20006/13/2021

Mary Jo was supposed to be the everywoman, the divorced working mom that frauen would identify with. The writing for Mary Jo was very weak though and she remained a mousy, boring presence who was always late for work. In the final season she probably got tired of playing nice and amped up the obnoxiousness factor turning Mary Jo into a younger Julia.

by Anonymousreply 20106/13/2021

How did a mouseburger like Mary Joe attract hunks like Ted and JD?

by Anonymousreply 20206/13/2021

Ted was probably intrigued by the prudishness at first. Am I imagining it or did Mary Jo say at one point that Ted was the only man she'd ever had sex with. Was she a virgin on her wedding night?

JD seemed like an implausible match for Mary Jo. He seemed far likelier to go for Suzanne or Charlene. The guy who seemed more in MJ's league was the BFF character whom she made a pact with about getting married if they were both still single in their 30s.

by Anonymousreply 20306/13/2021

All the women claimed to be virgins on their wedding nights.

by Anonymousreply 20406/13/2021

^^But only Charlene truly was.

by Anonymousreply 20506/13/2021

Charlene was probably lying too. She seemed like the type of religious frau who claims to still be a virgin because she has only done anal, oral, fisting and watersport but her hymen is still intact, praise Jesus!

by Anonymousreply 20606/13/2021

Why were they called Designing women? I get why they were called a Golden Girls because they’re old but not why they’re called designing.

by Anonymousreply 20706/14/2021

Because they worked in interior design, R207.

by Anonymousreply 20806/14/2021

I assumed it was also a play on words alluding to the 1960s Lauren Bacall movie "Designing Woman".

by Anonymousreply 20906/14/2021

[quote] JD seemed like an implausible match for Mary Jo. He seemed far likelier to go for Suzanne or Charlene.

JD did go for Charlene in real life. He married Jean Smart.

Mary Jo was an important part of the ensemble, even though she was mostly annoyingly a frustrated woman too confined by her upbringing's insistence on being a polite woman. I loved when she test drove the breast implants and became empowered by them; it's one of those episodes that showed Annie Potts really was hilarious and that she was playing Mary Jo with shades of nuance.

Charlene remains my least favorite character by no fault of Jean Smart's. I just don't relate to or really even buy her as she is written. The obsessions with Elvis and Dolly Parton, etc., just don't ring true to me and make her seem like a stock southern character. Dixie's character played against southern stereotypes, Delta's was a total stereotype except for her in-your-face personality (mostly to Delta's credit), and Mary Jo could have been any insecure woman anywhere but at least was convincingly written.

What I do like about Charlene is that she was really the only character who did any work. She took messages, kept the books, organized inventory and deliveries, etc. I like that they wrote the daft girl from Poplar Bluffs as the one who handled the finances and logistics, but otherwise she was just too silly. Betty White's Rose let out a cutting and cunning dark side enough to give her a little bit of an edge and keep us on our toes, but Charlene was just treacly and never seemed human.

To that point, I also loved how caustic Julia would suddenly become soft and supportive to Suzanne when Suzanne was in real distress, not silly distress, and how in private with Hal Holbrook, Julia became suddenly vulnerable and romantic. That's the sort of characterization that makes a great character—something radically different than what we normally see, but believable in context. I don't remember Charlene being more than one-dimensional.

by Anonymousreply 21006/14/2021

Mary Jo’s MUCH older cousin Alice from Phoenix should have come for a visit and done a scat jazz duet with with Julia.

by Anonymousreply 21106/14/2021

Never seen a single episode of this.

by Anonymousreply 21206/14/2021

[quote] Why were they called Designing women? I get why they were called a Golden Girls because they’re old but not why they’re called designing

It works on two levels, they were all single and single women were often referred to as designing women because they were artful, scheming, conniving etc… and of course these four were interior decorators.

by Anonymousreply 21306/14/2021

The original title of the show was to be Conniving Women, but they they decided to make it a work place drama.

by Anonymousreply 21406/14/2021

It should have been called EAT DIRT!

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by Anonymousreply 21506/14/2021

[quote]It works on two levels, they were all single and single women were often referred to as designing women because they were artful, scheming, conniving etc… .

Um, no. Just, no.

by Anonymousreply 21606/14/2021

So far Designing Women has NOT been culture cancelled - as people have seem to have forgotten Delta Burke wore blackface

I only bring this up because last summer, the company that owns Golden Girls announced they are yanking an episode from syndication that show Rose & Blanche wearing mud packs

So Designing Women has dodged the bullet as people have forgotten about that episode

by Anonymousreply 21706/14/2021

R217 I think it is partly because of the point. in the GG episode, it was a gag. In DW it was actually discussed and debated. Also, there is the fact that episode also has the domestic violence issue.

by Anonymousreply 21806/14/2021

Blackface leads to domestic violence? That sounds really loaded.

by Anonymousreply 21906/14/2021

Why did they call it Designing Women?

Have you ever seen the show? They all worked for "Sugarbaker's," the well-known but somewhat small Atlanta interior design firm headed by Julia Sugarbaker. Julia and her sister, Suzanne, owned the company. They hired Mary Jo as a designer to work with Julia. Suzanne was supposed to be "the front woman" going out and getting business, and Charlene as the office manager. Anthony was their delivery man. Four women all working for a design firm: Voila! "Designing Women."

by Anonymousreply 22006/14/2021

If they would have been an accounting firm it would have been called “Computing Women.”

by Anonymousreply 22106/14/2021

[quote] In DW it was actually discussed and debated

no they never discussed Suzanne showing up in Black face - the whole thing was one big joke, the racial element was never debated or even discussed

by Anonymousreply 22206/14/2021

R222 Actually, yes it was. Julia, Mary Jo, and Charlene all gave the boilerplate white liberal lines about it, well before she actually engaged in blackface. They actually made Anthony the least offended by, which is so often the case, and showing the white savior streak the women had towards him. But, through Anthony they also got in some of the free speech arguments. In the end, Suzanne still looked like an idiot and the moral was kinda don't do it because there are arguments against it and you will actually look stupid. It was the main B plot of the episode.

by Anonymousreply 22306/14/2021

Designing Women hasn't been canceled because it was canceled decades ago by CBS and it never attained a contemporary zeitgeist like Golden Girls has. Those of us who were around with both shows remember them similarly, but younger people who do the canceling only know Golden Girls because Golden Girls has been memed and merchandised. Julia, Suzanne, Mary Jo and Charlene aren't sold on mugs and tee shirts in Instagram ads. That makes all the difference. The show definitely would be a target of Millennial ire if it were being merchandised to Millennials.

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by Anonymousreply 22406/15/2021

R224. Designing Women was still a better show than Golden Girls with DW's superior writing, acting and comedy.

by Anonymousreply 22506/15/2021

[quote] Actually, yes it was. Julia, Mary Jo, and Charlene all gave the boilerplate white liberal lines about it, well before she actually engaged in blackface.

Charlene wasn't in the scene, the Liberal lines lasted less than 30 seconds and they had Julia call the NAACP to ask them about it, and we heard NOTHING about that phone call. After this 30 second scene about how wrong "Blackface" is, there was no mention of how wrong Black face is for the rest of the show

by Anonymousreply 22606/15/2021

R226, Julia did tell Suzanne off at the actual show and mentioned that she had promised the NAACP there would be no blackface. The discussion in the earlier scene, particularly Anthony's take on it, was about whether wearing dark makeup is the same as blackface and whether it is ever acceptable for white people to play black people.

The scenes in between were about the other storyline dealing with spousal abuse. It wasn't like they mentioned blackface in passing for five seconds and then moved on.

by Anonymousreply 22706/15/2021

Bernice Clifton 2024!

by Anonymousreply 22806/15/2021

Coming with reciepts, R226.

Starts at about 14:00 until around 15:30.

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by Anonymousreply 22906/15/2021

Why the hell are there no Designing Women Chia Heads?!? I want my Charlene head with flowing green locks now!

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by Anonymousreply 23006/15/2021

I just caught the last half of the series finale. It was a major clusterfuck. The final scene was Bernice fantasizing that Anthony was going to fuck her.

And you could tell Dixie Carter was just phoning it in.

The only redeeming feature was that it had a young Patrick Warburton. Christ he was gorgeous.

by Anonymousreply 23106/18/2021

It was something that I wished they had done with the original cast. EVERYBODY, expected that a show about four white women in Atlanta, would at some point do a GWTW parody episode. However, they waited until the end with a deflated cast. I would've loved if they had done one earlier with Suzanne as Scarlet and Charlene as Melanie.

Jean Smart did appear in "Scarlett" the TV sequel to GWTW. She played Sally Brewton, of Charleston.

by Anonymousreply 23206/18/2021

Sad half the cast is dead.

by Anonymousreply 23306/18/2021

R233 3/4 of the original four are still with us.

by Anonymousreply 23406/18/2021

I loved that theme song “Life’s not the French Riviera, life’s not a charity ball!”

by Anonymousreply 23506/18/2021

[quote]The only redeeming feature was that it had a young Patrick Warburton. Christ he was gorgeous.

He's the hottest cast member of both [italic]Seinfeld[/italic] and [italic]Family Guy[/italic].

by Anonymousreply 23606/18/2021

R234 Most people consider Meshach Taylor and Alice Ghostly as part of the main cast. Add in Jan Hooks and of course Dixie, and yes, half the cast is dead.

by Anonymousreply 237Last Saturday at 12:05 AM

Big deal, R237. Three quarters of the cast of my big 80s show is dead. But I am still here! I win! Take that, Bitch Arthur, Estelle Forgetty and Rude McClanahan. Hahahahaha! And I outlived those Designing Women bitches too.

Hit it, Sondheim. "I'm Still Here" in B-flat.

by Anonymousreply 238Last Saturday at 12:15 AM

This still cracks me up!😂

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by Anonymousreply 239Last Saturday at 12:22 AM

And I'm still here.

by Anonymousreply 240Last Saturday at 12:41 AM

R237 yes they became part of the regular cast but other Dixie they weren’t part of the original four. Meshach earned his spot through talent, turning a small supporting role into a starring one, Alice Ghostly was memorable because she was a breakout scene stealer but was never part of the main ensemble, Hooks was the best replacement DW had but was still a replacement.

by Anonymousreply 241Last Saturday at 9:02 AM

[quote]Jean Smart did appear in "Scarlett" the TV sequel to GWTW. She played Sally Brewton, of Charleston.

And Delta Burke starred in a TV movie called "Charleston" as a Scarlett O'Hara clone.

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by Anonymousreply 242Last Sunday at 7:59 PM

OMG YOU HAVE MADE MY NIGHT R242

If you know anywhere I can watch that movie, I WILL MARRY YOU!

by Anonymousreply 243Last Sunday at 8:04 PM

R241 The show was a lot hokier than the Golden Girls, but it did relationships well. Julia and Suzanne had a real sisterly dynamic, and Anthony and Suzanne were a really inspired pairing.

That was a really interesting thing they did, bringing together a racist-but-not evil beauty queen who had fallen from grace together with a smart and good black man who had been in prison, was accountable for his mistake and was able to roll with the inappropriateness of his friend instead of resenting her. Nothing about their dynamic could happen today. It was so preposterous and yet I can totally imagine it being a real friendship.

by Anonymousreply 244Last Monday at 3:24 AM

“Life’s not the French Riviera, Life’s not a charity ball!”

by Anonymousreply 245Last Monday at 4:09 AM

R244, I'd say Suzanne was often thoughtless, insensitive and guilty of stereotyping (about everyone), but I don't know if she was a racist or a bigot, even by the standards of her upbringing. Her treatment of Anthony was no different than how she treated Mary Jo or Charlene at work.

I guess the aspect of their relationship that would be deemed very problematic today was the interpretation of Suzanne treating him like a servant or as a pet. I think where the show veered into uncomfortable territory was in its emasculation of Anthony, particularly in the episodes where he was made to dress up as a woman. I think that was far more of a problem than Suzanne wearing dark makeup or referring to "Gladys Knight and the Pimps".

by Anonymousreply 246Last Monday at 4:17 AM

R246 She was racist, what a friend of mine calls "accidentally racist"—she didn't mean to be, but she was nevertheless biased. Being prone to racial stereotyping, as you say, is a kind of racism.

Suzanne wore blackface even though her black friend, her sister and her coworkers all told her doing so was racist. She wore blackface despite the NAACP telling her sister it was racist. So yeah, she was racist even if she wasn't wearing a pointy white hat.

by Anonymousreply 247Last Monday at 4:42 AM

Suzanne was often more thoughtless which bordered on racism.

by Anonymousreply 248Last Monday at 5:00 AM

R247 Actually, her black friend didn’t tell her to not wear blackface. It was clear she and Anthony discussed it offscreen and he wasn’t sure about whether she should or shouldn’t because he realised she wasn’t talking about old time blackface and it was clear she wasn’t doing it out of racist stereotyping. In other words he saw it was complicated.

by Anonymousreply 249Last Monday at 8:11 AM

Yes, R249, in the episode Anthony makes it clear that he feels differently about a white person wearing dark makeup to play a black person and invokes the example of Laurence Olivier playing Othello. He also adds that he doesn't find it objectionable whereas he would be offended by the old minstrel show tradition of blackface.

I wonder if Meshach Taylor felt the same way in real life or if he disagreed with the lines his character was asked to speak.

by Anonymousreply 250Last Monday at 1:03 PM

I wonder if Meshach Taylor felt the same way in real life or if he disagreed with the lines his character was asked to speak.

R250 Let me ask him. Hold tight.

by Anonymousreply 251Last Monday at 3:45 PM
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