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Tracey Ullman - Has she gotten her due?

Tracey Ullman is a bit of a comedy survivor. She's had hit shows every decade since the 1980s (although "hit" is sometimes generous), and her ability to disappear into characters is unsurpassed even by the more visible mimics, such as Kate McKinnon.

Witness her video below, where her character of Ruby Romaine - a gin-soaked, chain-smoking flooze of a North Hollywood makeup artist - tells a filthy story about old Hollywood and J. Eddie Hoover.

So what do gays think of her? Is she underrated, overrated, or just right?

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by Anonymousreply 201December 1, 2021 1:37 AM

M once referred to Tracey as her soulmate.

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by Anonymousreply 1November 23, 2021 1:45 AM

Kay was based on a real person.

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by Anonymousreply 2November 24, 2021 5:47 AM

I always thought her song was from the 60’s when I was a kid.

Was the 1950s and 60s throwback popular in the 80’s? Cause songs like “They Don’t Know” and “Johnny Are You Queer” were really popular?

by Anonymousreply 3November 24, 2021 6:00 AM

Linda Granger deserved more.

by Anonymousreply 4November 24, 2021 6:04 AM

R3 The song was a (recent at the time) cover of a work by Christy MaCColl, who was somewhat of a genre bending musical artist, starting out recording on the famous alternative music Stiff Records label. He father was a prominent Folk Singer, so she had those roots and she worked extensively with Billy Bragg, who did kind of Folk Punk Protest music. Her cover of his New England takes a very angry song and makes it heartbreaking. Her stripped down musical and acoustic recordings do feel like a throw back to earlier times, but I think more then anything, Tracey’s setting and styling of the video provided a nostalgic feel enhanced by the orchestration on the song. Interestingly enough though, the song Tainted Love by Softcell, that has such a New Wave feel is actually a cover of a 1960s song.

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by Anonymousreply 5November 24, 2021 6:13 PM

Tracey is absolutely brilliant! She’s richer than god and does what she wants.

by Anonymousreply 6November 24, 2021 6:15 PM

[quote] Linda Granger deserved more.

Such a survivor!

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by Anonymousreply 7November 24, 2021 6:16 PM

There was a bit where Linda sang a song about every drug she was ever addicted to. Absolutely hilarious!!!

by Anonymousreply 8November 24, 2021 6:16 PM

Jon Faverau.

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by Anonymousreply 9November 24, 2021 6:17 PM

Ruby Romaine is probably the best character she’s ever done.

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by Anonymousreply 10November 24, 2021 6:17 PM

Kay was heartbreaking to watch.

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by Anonymousreply 11November 24, 2021 6:18 PM

This was worth an Emmy.

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by Anonymousreply 12November 24, 2021 6:19 PM


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by Anonymousreply 13November 24, 2021 6:19 PM

Melania Trump.

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by Anonymousreply 14November 24, 2021 6:20 PM

Homosexual deprogramming.

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by Anonymousreply 15November 24, 2021 6:21 PM

She's a National Treasure! My favorite character from Tracey's BBC show.

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by Anonymousreply 16November 24, 2021 6:22 PM

Special skills

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by Anonymousreply 17November 24, 2021 6:26 PM

Ruby Romaine was my grandmother, right down to the polyester outfits, saggy boobs, beer drinking and smoking, and all of the racist remarks.

by Anonymousreply 18November 24, 2021 6:28 PM

Very talented I admit, but she is no Viv Vance!

by Anonymousreply 19November 24, 2021 6:33 PM


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by Anonymousreply 20November 24, 2021 6:39 PM

I admire her for charting her own course but she could have had a better career if she played the Hollywood game more. Then she could have worked with writers and directors who matched her talent, instead of doing sketch comedy that was often, er, inconsistent.

by Anonymousreply 21November 24, 2021 7:09 PM

Three of a Kind was great!

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by Anonymousreply 22November 24, 2021 7:13 PM

She’s in “Curb Your Enthusiasm” this year!

by Anonymousreply 23November 24, 2021 7:21 PM

[quote] I admire her for charting her own course but she could have had a better career if she played the Hollywood game more. Then she could have worked with writers and directors who matched her talent

She’s worked with the best in the business. Put down the pipe, honey.

by Anonymousreply 24November 24, 2021 7:23 PM

She was great in Mrs. America. I want to see her in more dramatic roles.

I would also love her and Amy Sedaris to play sisters.

by Anonymousreply 25November 24, 2021 7:25 PM

She is naturally hilarious. Watch this talk she did at the 92nd St. Y a few years ago. At 40:11 she talks about why she loves New York Jews and I was in tears laughing.

"Turn your jewelry in the city."

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by Anonymousreply 26November 24, 2021 7:25 PM

[quote]She’s worked with the best in the business. Put down the pipe, honey.

In case it wasn't clear, I like her a lot. She is always good, but not always working with strong material. She is capable of more than occasional supporting roles in big projects, and propping up middle of the road sketch comedy. But I think she has exactly the career she wants, so good for her.

To be fair, I am not super familiar with the shows after Tracey Takes On. Every time I hear she has a new show I check it out, but I am usually underwhelmed and don't keep up with it. Maybe I've just had bad luck picking episodes.

by Anonymousreply 27November 24, 2021 7:47 PM

She has sufficient.

by Anonymousreply 28November 24, 2021 7:48 PM

She was cut out of "Death Becomes Her" entirely.

by Anonymousreply 29November 24, 2021 7:51 PM

She never fails to make me laugh.

by Anonymousreply 30November 24, 2021 8:05 PM

R3, I remember it on the radio for a bit in the US (Metro NYC area), and it always sounded like it was from the 60s to me, too. I didn’t realize it was Tracey until the 90s.

by Anonymousreply 31November 24, 2021 8:14 PM

Such a good impersonator but I don’t think she has ever made me laugh. Her Angela Merkel is the worst. She seems to think mimicry alone is comical. I sissy’s bring when I see her.

by Anonymousreply 32November 24, 2021 8:21 PM

Haha. Sorry. I cringe when I see her

by Anonymousreply 33November 24, 2021 8:22 PM

All these character impersonations rely on an army of unnamed make-up people.

The scripts pander to Americans with too much vulgarity and too little wit.

by Anonymousreply 34November 24, 2021 8:51 PM

R34 🙄

by Anonymousreply 35November 24, 2021 9:03 PM

The Judy Dench impersonation above is pretty good, but again the only source of thumper , to the extent there is any, comes from the impersonation itself. There not a single line, situation, or not of behaviour in the skit that is funny in itself. If she played the skit without the impersonation., there would be absolutely no humour to it at all. The truly funny mimics use the mimicry as a component, not the sole source of the humour.

Her approach is always to develop a fairly good impersonation of a famous person and then either subvert our impression of that person’s character or grossly exaggerate it for comic effect. The Judy Dench one falls in the first category. Her tedious Prince Margaret impersonation falls in the second.

by Anonymousreply 36November 24, 2021 9:03 PM

Considering her first show for US television won her a shitload of Emmys, I think she's gotten her due.

by Anonymousreply 37November 24, 2021 9:07 PM

[quote]Such a good impersonator but I don’t think she has ever made me laugh.

I LOLed when she did Renee Zellwegger as JK Rowling over a decade ago. 😂

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by Anonymousreply 38November 24, 2021 9:08 PM

[quote]Christy MaCColl


by Anonymousreply 39November 24, 2021 9:09 PM

^ Shameful spelling.

by Anonymousreply 40November 24, 2021 9:12 PM

[quote] The Judy Dench impersonation

Judi Dench witless slander

by Anonymousreply 41November 24, 2021 9:13 PM

R38. Sorry— I found that one even more dire than the other things she’s done. The jokes and the situation just aren’t funny to me. As always the impersonation, which is quite broad in this case, takes center stage.

by Anonymousreply 42November 24, 2021 9:16 PM

[quote] impersonation, which is quite broad

As broad and unfunny as an Italian circus clown.

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by Anonymousreply 43November 24, 2021 9:19 PM

[quote] M once referred to Tracey as her soulmate.

But Streep, surely, went to a high-class synagogue.

by Anonymousreply 44November 24, 2021 9:27 PM

r34 Tracey provides the talent and the endless array of voices. Anybody can get in a fat suit.

by Anonymousreply 45November 24, 2021 9:46 PM

It's ironic that you used the word tedious R36.

by Anonymousreply 46November 24, 2021 9:58 PM

The skit isn’t tedious ?

by Anonymousreply 47November 24, 2021 9:59 PM

[quote] The Judy Dench impersonation

Americans think it's funny to mock elderly Englishwomen.

by Anonymousreply 48November 24, 2021 10:05 PM

R27, I understand. I didn’t mean to pounce on you. She has, however, worked with amazing writers and directors over the years. She’s said that people simply don’t know what to do with her, that she only did comedy because that took off. She started out in drama and has tried a bit of everything. She has a net worth of over 100 million thanks to owning all her shows. The Simpsons also send her a check every year (Fox settled out of court with her). She said that she thinks it’s important to have a stable and happy personal life, that the best actors are the ones who don’t make their entire lives all about show business. She’s experienced a bunch of big losses in her life: father dying in front of her as a child, husband of 30 years dies from cancer right before their anniversary, on Christmas Eve, right before her birthday, and then two years later her mother dies in a fire. It seems to me that she knows what is truly important in life. I know people who have worked for her and saying that they praised her would be an understated. They absolutely adored her and she went out of her way for everyone that worked for her and around her, including the crew. She’s one of greats. We’re lucky to still have her.

by Anonymousreply 49November 24, 2021 10:07 PM

It is a skit performed by an Englishwoman on a British network. I don’t think the Americans can be blamed for that one. Judy Dench is not a particularly well known personality in America.

by Anonymousreply 50November 24, 2021 10:08 PM

[quote] Americans think it's funny to mock elderly Englishwomen.

Well considering that Judi and her daughter love it, I guess the Brits find that funny as well.

by Anonymousreply 51November 24, 2021 10:09 PM

[quote] Judy Dench is not a particularly well known personality in America.


by Anonymousreply 52November 24, 2021 10:09 PM

When she and her now-deceased husband lived in Pacific Palisades, they wanted to buy my parents home that was for sale in nearby Santa Monica (presumably as a place to stick her elderly mother as they didn't want her living with them any longer). After we'd gone into contract, they then kept coming back over and over nickel and diming all kinds of things. It was rather laughable, but then not so funny when they eventually claimed they wanted a large reduction based on their ridiculous claim that the furnace and central heating needed total replacement. We knew the heating system was perfectly fine and told them to go fuck themselves.

by Anonymousreply 53November 24, 2021 10:09 PM

Yes. I don’t think it’s in any way malicious. It’s just not particularly funny.

by Anonymousreply 54November 24, 2021 10:10 PM

R52. Are you American?

by Anonymousreply 55November 24, 2021 10:12 PM

[Quote] Judi Dench is not a particularly well known personality in America.

If that were true, Kathy Griffin would not have used Dench as a punchline for a prospective sex tape between Griffin and another celebrity.

by Anonymousreply 56November 24, 2021 10:12 PM

I think Maggie Smith is better known in the U.S. because of the HARRY POTTER and SISTER ACT movies.

by Anonymousreply 57November 24, 2021 10:16 PM

[quote] Kathy Griffin … used Dench as a punchline for a prospective sex tape between Griffin and another celebrity.

Another example of Americans thinking it's funny to mock elderly Englishwomen.

Another example of a vulgarian thinking it's funny to mock a Shakespearean.

by Anonymousreply 58November 24, 2021 10:19 PM

It is certainly true that Dench is not totally unknown in America. However, I can assure you that the number of people who would recognise those mannerisms and speech patterns as being characteristic of Dench is much smaller in America than in the UK.

The fact that Griffin refers to someone is not really the best indication that he or she is central to American life. America is not datalounge. Dench, and definitely Griffin, do not loin as large in America as they do on data lounge.

by Anonymousreply 59November 24, 2021 10:21 PM

Loom as large

by Anonymousreply 60November 24, 2021 10:22 PM

Keep Dench's loins out of this, please.

by Anonymousreply 61November 24, 2021 10:24 PM

She seems like a real asshole. She was at a musical tribute for Kirsty MacColl and blathered about her big hit, a version of MacColl's "They Don't Know", admitting that all she added to the original was:

",,,a short pink lurex mini-skirt, and I had Paul McCartney in the video, and it was Number 2, and we couldn't knock bloody "Karma Chameleon" by Boy George off Number 1. Bastard! But I was Number 1 in Norway for 8 weeks....rockin' the fjords! And it was Number 1 in a few other countries too, and without doubt, it launched my career in America...it was my calling card. I want to thank you, Kirsty, and we miss you."

The Evening Standard critic John Aizlewood said of the musical tribute: "The results, inevitably, were mixed, although only Tracey Ullman's ghastly self-aggrandizing speech in the encore struck a truly jarring note."

by Anonymousreply 62November 24, 2021 10:26 PM

The Tracey Ullman Show had some great parts. The musical numbers were always a highlight.

by Anonymousreply 63November 24, 2021 10:26 PM

R61 It's the vile Kathy Griffin who wants to talk about Dame Judi Dench and sex tapes.

by Anonymousreply 64November 24, 2021 10:27 PM

17 count 'em 17

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by Anonymousreply 65November 24, 2021 10:27 PM

Where exactly are your loins? I didn't know people had loins. I've heard of a loin of pork, but...

by Anonymousreply 66November 24, 2021 10:27 PM

[quote] When she and her now-deceased husband lived in Pacific Palisades

To whom do you refer, R53?

by Anonymousreply 67November 24, 2021 10:31 PM

Too bad all of Ullman's Chanel Monticello character working in Airport Security have been scrubbed .

Only fragments remain on youtube and soon even these last vestiges of Chanel will disappear into the wokism ether.

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by Anonymousreply 68November 24, 2021 10:40 PM

R57. But not at all as a personality.

by Anonymousreply 69November 24, 2021 10:52 PM

R68. Amazing she did that. Not funny m, but amazing.

by Anonymousreply 70November 24, 2021 10:57 PM

JFC. You keep making the same fucking comment over and over. Are you on the spectrum?

by Anonymousreply 71November 24, 2021 11:00 PM

R71 Who are you talking to?

by Anonymousreply 72November 24, 2021 11:00 PM

R68. Amazing she did that. Not funny, but amazing.

by Anonymousreply 73November 24, 2021 11:03 PM

I'm sure Ullman is counting her blessings right now that she's not a big household name due to some of her characters she played. I know she played a gay flight attendant, a sassy black airport security woman, an Indian woman, and an Asian woman. I'm shocked the Twitter mob hasn't come for her, but that's one of the good parts about being a little under the radar.

by Anonymousreply 74November 24, 2021 11:28 PM

She was notable for having a character with two gay dads, which was rather unusual on American television in the 89s.

by Anonymousreply 75November 24, 2021 11:37 PM

I love Francesca!

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by Anonymousreply 76November 24, 2021 11:52 PM

And notably for introducing the Simpsons, which became a much bigger phenomenon than her own programme

by Anonymousreply 77November 24, 2021 11:57 PM

Interesting interview she did on being Ruby Romaine...

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by Anonymousreply 78November 25, 2021 12:00 AM

I thought she was in Mamma Mia with bestie Meryl. I don’t realize I had been watching Julie Walters until the movie was over.

by Anonymousreply 79November 25, 2021 12:04 AM

My favorite was THRACEY TAKES ON... that aired on HBO in the late '90s. And the spin-off Ruby Romaine movie from the early 2000s.

by Anonymousreply 80November 25, 2021 12:05 AM

R5 Oh yes she’s the woman from “Fairytale of New York”.

by Anonymousreply 81November 25, 2021 12:05 AM

Who didn't love Fern Rosenthal? It was so funny when she won a walk-on part on DR. QUINN, MEDICINE WOMAN and acted like such a diva. 😂

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by Anonymousreply 82November 25, 2021 12:11 AM

A catfight over whether Judi Dench is well known in America is one of the most faggotiest things I've ever seen.

by Anonymousreply 83November 25, 2021 12:14 AM

[quote]Who didn't love Fern Rosenthal?

If you've lived in the NYC Metro area, you've known middle-aged Jewish women who are exactly like that character.

by Anonymousreply 84November 25, 2021 12:19 AM

[quote] one of the most faggotiest things I've ever seen.

Well, R83, we've devoted almost 600 posts to this dead woman who hasn't been on screen for eighty years!

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by Anonymousreply 85November 25, 2021 12:25 AM

And then there's the Delilah-Judith thread.

by Anonymousreply 86November 25, 2021 12:31 AM

Jesus, blah, blah, blah... Ullman's a treasure and her impersonations are delicious. Tracy as Camilla, babysitting Prince George. Comedy gold.

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by Anonymousreply 87November 25, 2021 12:32 AM

I wonder who she based Linda Granger on.

by Anonymousreply 88November 25, 2021 1:04 AM

I think she's amazing and a wee bit underappreciated.

by Anonymousreply 89November 25, 2021 1:16 AM

R5 Her name is Kirsty MacColl. KIRSTY.

It was amazing to see you share a link that provided the correct spelling and yet, you little renegade, you still managed to get it wrong.

MacColl was someone who was deeply under-appreciated in her lifetime, and died way too early due to some asshole's negligence (in a boating accident).

by Anonymousreply 90November 25, 2021 1:18 AM

My favorite character of all time is Ginny Tillman.

"This would all be very touching if there wasn't a man in the emergency room with AN ARROW STUCK IN HIS ASS!"

by Anonymousreply 91November 25, 2021 1:18 AM

The thing about a lot of Tracey's humor is that very little of it is rapid fire jokes or gags.

The closest analogy would be Carol Burnett's work on the Carol Burnett Show, particularly the "Family" sketches, which were never written with any jokes/punchlines. The humor was found in the situation(s) and characters.

by Anonymousreply 92November 25, 2021 1:34 AM

I hate that Kirsty's mode of death is always at the forefront when her name is mentioned.

by Anonymousreply 93November 25, 2021 1:56 AM

The Family sketches were the only ones with that underlying level of drama, r92. The rest of the sketches were all broad humor. All of Tracey's characters are more developed than Burnett's caricatures. And I'm not denigrating Burnett.

by Anonymousreply 94November 25, 2021 2:00 AM

R93 I know. She was such a great person, and a complex one, not a victim.

R94 True. Was just trying to get across my point. Occasionally Carol did have other sketches that were more subtle, but yes, the broad humor was more frequent and is what we usually remember.

by Anonymousreply 95November 25, 2021 2:28 AM

She reminds me of a British version of Gilda Radner’s impersonations technique.

by Anonymousreply 96November 25, 2021 2:29 AM

[quote] I hate that Kirsty's mode of death is always at the forefront when her name is mentioned.

Well, it really was stunning how she died: run over by a speedboat while on a vacation, scuba diving with her sons. The driver of the boat was a super rich Mexican who owned a chain of grocery stores. He paid a deckhand on the boat to take the blame for killing MacColl. The deckhand was sentenced to 2 years 10 months in prison. He paid a fine in lieu of the sentence; the fine amounted to about $90. He was also ordered to pay approximately US$2,150 in restitution to MacColl's family, an amount based on his wages. There was a "Justice for Kirsty" campaign but there was never anything approaching justice. Her death is always brought up because it was such an unnecessary, stupid death caused by some rich prick.

Writing in The Spectator Marcus Berkmann said:

"Pop stars tend to die earlier and more pointless deaths than most people but the end of Kirsty MacColl still came as a shock. For one thing, she was never quite a star, despite the acres of press coverage she received the following day. And then there was the manner of her death. Drug addled mediocrities like Kurt Cobain polish themselves off in a haze of adolescent self hatred, but it's the genuinely talented songwriters who lose their lives protecting their children from arseholes in speedboats. I can't remember a pop death that left me feeling more numb and angry. It is a fetching irony that someone who spent a career writing songs macho idiots should eventually be run down by one. What MacColl offered above all was a fierce intelligence, and there aren't many of those in the music industry."

by Anonymousreply 97November 25, 2021 2:33 AM

R97 says it perfectly.

And she'd just had a real midlife renaissance. After a long period of record company woes and a painful divorce, she'd made a fabulous record and was in a new relationship. No one is guaranteed forever or only happiness, but it just seemed so unfair.

Kirsty, Alison Moyet and Tracey Thorn were my triumvirate of smart, fabulous women with fantastic music. Alison and Tracey have made great music in recent years and it sucks that we don't have Kirsty's take on things.

by Anonymousreply 98November 25, 2021 2:57 AM

R90 Did it ever occur to you that spell check might not recognize Kirsty and autocorrect it to it’s more known variant? I did watch and see it do it this time.

by Anonymousreply 99November 25, 2021 3:03 AM

She's also great as Angela Merkel, sex pot prime minister.

by Anonymousreply 100November 25, 2021 3:24 AM


Americans think it's funny to mock elderly Englishwomen and Germanwomen.

by Anonymousreply 101November 25, 2021 3:28 AM

Mockery of famous people is funny if done right. It's called 'punching up' R101. Tracey does it right.

by Anonymousreply 102November 25, 2021 3:30 AM

Tracey is woman who likes to 'punch' other women.

by Anonymousreply 103November 25, 2021 3:35 AM

Impersonations weren't really Gilda's strong suit, r96. Compare her Baba Wawa to Cheri Oteri's Barbara Walters.

by Anonymousreply 104November 25, 2021 3:37 AM

It just seemed so unfair.

Not a lyric Kirsty MacColl would ever write.

by Anonymousreply 105November 25, 2021 3:45 AM

I love Gilda Radner, but Cheri Oteri's Barbara Walters was the best. She had the voice and the bizarre phrasing and inflections down pat. One thing I loved about her impression - and something the real Barbara did all the time - was the constant name-dropping of celebrities from three or four decades ago as if they were still hip and happening.

"I was sharing a hot tub with Suzanne Somers, Burt Reynolds and Raquel Welch when Raquel turned to me and said......"

by Anonymousreply 106November 25, 2021 3:47 AM

Ginny Redux

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by Anonymousreply 107November 25, 2021 3:48 AM

[quote] Cheri Oteri's Barbara Walters

Babs needing some late night sex chat was hysterically funny.

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by Anonymousreply 108November 25, 2021 3:49 AM

That Kirsty MacColl death is so freaky. Can you imagine going scuba diving with your beloved sons while on vacation and as soon as you resurface a speedboat is directly headed your way. She probably only had moments to react. Her maternal instinct was strong for sure.

by Anonymousreply 109November 25, 2021 3:55 AM

Oh. Is there going to be a sea of "So brave!" posts? Kirsty would vomit.

by Anonymousreply 110November 25, 2021 4:01 AM

Wow. Over 100 posts and no one added the Princess Margaret bit?!! Slippin....

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by Anonymousreply 111November 25, 2021 4:06 AM


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by Anonymousreply 112November 25, 2021 4:12 AM

R72. No one knows. He’s just late for a diaper change.

by Anonymousreply 113November 25, 2021 4:14 AM

R111. It was mentioned above.

by Anonymousreply 114November 25, 2021 8:48 AM

You all can just piss right off!

But seriously, Kirsty could have been a DL'er. Delicious snark in her lyrics. "Now are you....just waving or drowning? It’s so hard to tell with you so far away..."

Sorry, Tracey, but since you made her tribute all about YOU we can certainly make your thread a little about Kirsty.

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by Anonymousreply 115November 25, 2021 2:48 PM


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by Anonymousreply 116November 25, 2021 3:50 PM

Dance Challenge...and a quick Simpsons blip at the end. Notice how the animation evolved.

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by Anonymousreply 117November 25, 2021 5:26 PM

Ullman sued to bet royalties from the Simpsons because the Simpsons were first seen (in a very crude fashion) on her show. She lost. Good. What a greedy bitch.

by Anonymousreply 118November 25, 2021 8:41 PM

Ullman has lived in America for personal reasons, but she’s never had huge commercial success or become a household name in America. Her only programme on a broadcast network was on Fox ,which was a fledgling network with a small audience at the time. This was the days of Herman’s Head. Her ratings were ultimately too low even for that broadcast network. The rest of her work has been on cable television. She received a fair bit of critical success because her show covered new topics and adopted a somewhat progressive view, but most people didn’t enjoy watching it. British people apparently like her which has kept her name alive. I can see why The Simpsons, which, whatever you think of it, was a real cultural phenomenon and big cultural success , would have her mouth watering.

by Anonymousreply 119November 25, 2021 10:02 PM

People who are not mouth-breathers know Tracey Ullman.

by Anonymousreply 120November 25, 2021 10:06 PM

[quote] Ullman has lived in America for personal reasons

What reasons?

by Anonymousreply 121November 25, 2021 10:12 PM

Her husband wanted to live there.

by Anonymousreply 122November 25, 2021 10:15 PM

I thought he died.

by Anonymousreply 123November 25, 2021 10:23 PM

[quote] I thought he died

She must be exhausting, spiky and needy.

by Anonymousreply 124November 25, 2021 10:31 PM

Tracey & Steve

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by Anonymousreply 125November 26, 2021 2:06 AM

[quote] Ullman has lived in America for personal reasons, but she’s never had huge commercial success or become a household name in America. Her only programme on a broadcast network was on Fox ,which was a fledgling network with a small audience at the time. This was the days of Herman’s Head. Her ratings were ultimately too low even for that broadcast network.

First of all, you’re an idiot. Second, Tracey’s show launched Fox and won them their first Emmy and saved that network from crumbling. Third, Herman’s Head didn’t premiere until 1991. The Tracey Ullman Show wasn’t on then. Fourth, Tracey pulled the plug on the show, not Fox. Fifth, Tracey is a household name in the US. She has 7 Emmys and 27 Emmy nominations to her credit, not to mention her BAFTAs, SAG, Golden Globe and 12 American Comedy Awards. What’s this personal reasons crap? She’s lived in both the US and the UK for the last four decades. She’s worth $116 million dollars. She’s also a naturalized American.

Lastly, to the other poster, Tracey gets royalty checks from The Simpsons every year. She confirmed this twice three years ago. Fox settled with her and others out of court and James L. Brooks was in her corner.

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by Anonymousreply 126November 26, 2021 2:39 AM

Thank you, r126.

by Anonymousreply 127November 26, 2021 2:45 AM

[quote] Lastly, to the other poster, Tracey gets royalty checks from The Simpsons every year. She confirmed this twice three years ago. Fox settled with her and others out of court and James L. Brooks was in her corner.

Really? Since she lost her suit against them that seems hard to believe. From Variety:

Tracey Ullman has lost her lawsuit against 20th Century Fox Film Corp. seeking profits related to merchandising of “The Simpsons,” which was created as vignettes for “The Tracey Ullman Show.”

A Superior Court jury deliberated for less than five hours yesterday before rejecting Ullman’s claim, which would have brought her more than $ 2.25 million in profits from the hit Fox Broadcasting Co. series.

Ullman maintained in her original complaint 18 months ago that her contract on “The Tracey Ullman Show” called for her to receive 5% to 10% of net receipts from “series characters” created for the show other than those she played.

The complaint also said that the actress-comedian was to receive 7 1/2% of adjusted gross profits related to merchandising–a bonanza for the animated series, including T-shirts, toys and lunch boxes.

Those connected with developing “The Simpsons,” including exec producer James L. Brooks, testified during the trial that the characters were created by cartoonist Matt Groening and that Ullman wasn’t involved.

In addition to the Ullman suit, “Ullman” co-creator Kenneth Estin–one of four exec producers on that series–has also filed a suit against Fox saying that his contract called for him to receive 7.5% of revenues from the show, including portions of merchandising on “The Simpsons” (Daily Variety, July 8). That action is still pending.

“The Simpsons” characters were created as interstitial material during the Ullman show, which ran on Fox during the weblet’s first four seasons before being canceled in 1990.

Although that show was a weak ratings performer, “The Simpsons” has gone on to become a stand-alone hit since premiering in January 1990 and will likely reap a major windfall in off-network syndication, where Fox is currently exploring its launch strategy.

Ullman was reportedly out of the country and couldn’t be reached for comment yesterday but had quipped at the 1990 Emmy Awards that she had “breast-fed those little devils” before they achieved success on their own. A Fox spokesman said only that the studio is “very pleased with the decision.”

Ullman’s attorney, Michael Bergman, said he had not yet discussed with his client whether to appeal the verdict. “I’m very disappointed,” he said. “I think the jury did their best, but it was a very complex case … and the issues just got lost somewhere along the line.”

by Anonymousreply 128November 26, 2021 3:37 AM

Did Tracey have any involvement with the early Simpsons cartoons? She didn't create the characters, but was she involved in production of the sketches in any way? Otherwise, I don't see how she felt entitled to Simpsons profits. It seems the cartoons merely appeared on her show but others were behind it.

by Anonymousreply 129November 26, 2021 3:46 AM

[quote] Did Tracey have any involvement with the early Simpsons cartoons? She didn't create the characters, but was she involved in production of the sketches in any way?

No, of course not. That's why it's a sign of her immense greed that she would want royalties from the producers of the Simpsons. The little, crude Simpsons bits were shown on her show but she had nothing to do with the creation of them.

by Anonymousreply 130November 26, 2021 4:25 AM

[quote]The little, crude Simpsons bits were shown on her show

Would the Simpsons be running today if they hadn't been, r130?

by Anonymousreply 131November 26, 2021 4:29 AM

[quote] Would the Simpsons be running today if they hadn't been?

Maybe. I don't think Tracey Ullman is responsible for the success of the Simpsons, although I know she thinks she is. She has an immense ego.

by Anonymousreply 132November 26, 2021 4:43 AM

i think she deserved something, but more along the lines of a one time payment. 5 to 10 percent of everything? Hell, no.

by Anonymousreply 133November 26, 2021 4:47 AM

So she gets income from The Simpsons TV show but not merchandise related to it?

by Anonymousreply 134November 26, 2021 5:14 AM

R120. Whatever you think of her comedy, it’s not particularly rely on subtlety or intellectualism. Her lack of success isn’t due to a lack of sophistication on the part of the audience.

by Anonymousreply 135November 26, 2021 5:23 AM

Dear, R135, I'm trying to understand the double negatives in your second sentence.

by Anonymousreply 136November 26, 2021 5:30 AM

Tracey Ullman has hardly had a "lack of success." Your average slob doesn't really know her, but her shows have been popular with others. Her HBO show was acclaimed.

"Subtlety and intellectualism" isn't a standard-bearer for good comedy. She's more of a satirist and a keen social observer.

by Anonymousreply 137November 26, 2021 5:56 AM

I don't think she ever REALLY became a star in America. And I don't think she's worth $116 million dollars. I think that's very inflated figure.

by Anonymousreply 138November 26, 2021 6:09 AM

She and sister Liv should have done a buddy action film in the 80s when they were both still hot.

by Anonymousreply 139November 26, 2021 6:13 AM

R126. Why did you bother to type all that? I openly acknowledged her critical acclaim. It was pointless to type out all the awards. If you want to tell me she earned three times that number of awards, it’s fine with me.

I don’t know why it’s particularly hurtful to you to hear that she moved to the US for personal reasons. Her Wikipedia entry, for one, clearly states that. Since you care a lot about her and feel it is wounding, you may want yo see that it gets corrected if you are sure it is wrong.

There are also a number of online sources reporting her low ratings, including Wikipedia and the LA Times and New York Times. Generally people cite the Simpson married with children for launching Fox, but if it helps you I will take your word she launched the network.

Obviously I haven’t done a poll—/and I assume you haven’t either—-but I wouldn’t be surprised if you asked one hundred Americans to name the 50 best known comedians in the US and none of them named Ullman. Obviously that doesn’t mean she’s a bad comedian even though that is my personal view.

by Anonymousreply 140November 26, 2021 6:19 AM

R136. Sure. Would be glad to help. Please send the double negative and we can discuss.

by Anonymousreply 141November 26, 2021 6:20 AM

R137. I don’t think interject and subtlety are necessarily required either but the poster had said that anyone but a mouth breather knows who she is. I don’t think being a mouth breather would really prevent someone from appreciating her humour if it were really funny.

by Anonymousreply 142November 26, 2021 6:24 AM

I guess you never saw her HBO show. She was very funny in that. Her piss take on both American and British culture and the bizarreness of it is spot on. Ruby Romaine was like so many of the Old Hollywood veterans you used to see around LA.

by Anonymousreply 143November 26, 2021 6:59 AM

But that’s where she fails. Clearly she’s capable of creating characters and mocking things, but creating a recognisable character int funny in itself and mocking something isn’t funny in itself.

by Anonymousreply 144November 26, 2021 7:03 AM

r144 that's your opinion. Mocking something is called satire. It's funny.

[quote]creating a recognisable character int funny in itself

I guess you're not really familiar with her work. The characters she creates have distinct personalities. Ruby Romaine and Fern Rosenthal are two great examples of that. Are you American? Many Americans have known women like these two characters. What's brilliant about Ullman is that she creates these characters who have very specific backstories and live in specific regions of the US, but they're familiar to everyone. For example, you don't have to be familiar with elderly Hollywood makeup artists to have known a woman exactly like Ruby Romaine. Your grandmother's friend from Peoria is the same type of person. That says a lot about Ullman's talent.

by Anonymousreply 145November 26, 2021 8:03 AM

I’m American. Creating a recognisable character is valuable in some setting. In comedy I don’t find any particular enjoyment in an actor embodying a character unless he or she uses it to generate humour. Ullman rarely, if ever does that. Satire is also useful but you have to have something original and funny to say about it. For example , I assume the woke sketch above was improvised? All of the dialog consisted of very obvious exaggeration of expressions of cultural sensitivity

by Anonymousreply 146November 26, 2021 10:12 AM

Who knew Ms. Ullman would be such a controversial and fought over entity here on DL. It’s nice to be surprised. For those in the know, can you please summarize her need to be in the US for the rest of us, other then to tax shelter her wealth from the British government I’m unawares.

by Anonymousreply 147November 26, 2021 11:27 AM

Her husband had already started working in the US.

by Anonymousreply 148November 26, 2021 11:35 AM

R148 So, with the money she was pulling in he could sit on the couch and eat bonbons all day?

by Anonymousreply 149November 26, 2021 11:57 AM


by Anonymousreply 150November 26, 2021 12:19 PM

I LOVE me some Tracey Ullman. I wish she as on more regularly...and I wish HBOmax would have put up all the old episodes of Tracy Takes On, but sadly they probably won't, as a lot of the stuff she did in that would be considered "problematic" by today's standards...

by Anonymousreply 151November 26, 2021 12:37 PM

Tracey's fan base in the US is almost entirely people who have or had HBO. Because that's where her work was available here.

That, and not her accessibility/likability/talent, is probably THE biggest factor in terms of who knows her name.

by Anonymousreply 152November 26, 2021 2:19 PM

[quote]I’m American. Creating a recognisable character is valuable in some setting. In comedy I don’t find any particular enjoyment in an actor embodying a character unless he or she uses it to generate humour. Ullman rarely, if ever does that.

Your spelling isn't very American, r146.

by Anonymousreply 153November 26, 2021 2:58 PM

I'm actually amazed that she has escaped retroactive cancellation due to her previous black, hispanic, and asian characters. I am glad she has thought, as I love her, and think she is a treasure.

Kind of like how Alison Moyet never got called on the carpet for Rise.

by Anonymousreply 154November 26, 2021 3:10 PM

R154 Wow, haven't thought of that song for years. I don't think she was being overtly racist, of course, but it was, as the woke kids would say, problematic.

by Anonymousreply 155November 26, 2021 3:22 PM

R153. I now live in Europe.

by Anonymousreply 156November 26, 2021 4:01 PM

Uh huh.

by Anonymousreply 157November 26, 2021 4:16 PM

r146 if you're American then why do you use British spelling?

by Anonymousreply 158November 26, 2021 4:26 PM

What would be the point of lying about such a thing.? British English is the default English setting on the phone. If it makes a huge difference to you, it’s not hard to change the setting

by Anonymousreply 159November 26, 2021 4:36 PM

[quote]Tracey's fan base in the US is almost entirely people who have or had HBO. Because that's where her work was available here.

Shows on HBO are limited in popularity to HBO viewers only, like The Sopranos and Game Of Thrones! Nobody else knows those shows exist!

by Anonymousreply 160November 26, 2021 4:47 PM

Household Saints

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by Anonymousreply 161November 26, 2021 4:50 PM

Sex and the City is unknown to people who are not HBO subscribers.

by Anonymousreply 162November 26, 2021 5:21 PM

R162 No, SATC is more well known because an edited version was syndicated, therefore distributing the show to a wider audience.

by Anonymousreply 163November 26, 2021 5:29 PM

Sex and the City is only known by HBO subscribers and TBS viewers.

by Anonymousreply 164November 26, 2021 5:38 PM

I think that this thread has conclusively revealed that Tracey is a witch- and that she needs to be burned.

by Anonymousreply 165November 26, 2021 6:04 PM

r165, why?

by Anonymousreply 166November 26, 2021 6:07 PM

This thread has become tiresome because somebody really doesn't like Tracey Ullman and is obsessed with it.

by Anonymousreply 167November 26, 2021 6:16 PM

Sex & City was a huge hit around the world, you dolt.

by Anonymousreply 168November 26, 2021 6:18 PM

Just ignore them, r167. Some trolls are just thread shitters. They're attention-starved and just acting out...like the petulant children they are.

by Anonymousreply 169November 26, 2021 6:22 PM

That sketch with Kay and the therapist was heartbreaking.

I also loved the sketch with Tracey and Glenn who were basically Katharine Hepburn and Bette Davis. You don't see smart sketch comedy like this anymore.

by Anonymousreply 170November 26, 2021 7:49 PM
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by Anonymousreply 171November 26, 2021 8:38 PM

^ Is that supposed to be caricaturing someone in particular?

by Anonymousreply 172November 26, 2021 9:06 PM

Kay smokes pot...

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by Anonymousreply 173November 27, 2021 5:18 AM

R160 it was different in the '90s. Network TV still reigned supreme. Cable shows were even ignored by the Emmys, for the most part. It was SEX AND THE CITY and THE SOPRANOS, which debuted around the same time in the late '90s, that changed everything.

by Anonymousreply 174November 27, 2021 8:02 AM

Tracey Ullman is a pretty well-known entertainer.

by Anonymousreply 175November 27, 2021 8:27 AM

I’ve always wondered if there was something special about Tracey Ullman’s uvula that made it easier for her to do impressions?

by Anonymousreply 176November 27, 2021 10:06 AM

[quote] Tracey Ullman is a pretty well-known entertainer.

I don't think most American know who she is.

by Anonymousreply 177November 28, 2021 2:07 AM

I saw this one third of a century ago!

I thought it was an odd, confused hodge-podge even then— when I was young and uncritical.

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by Anonymousreply 178November 28, 2021 2:33 AM

To get back to Kirsty for a moment, this is another top song of hers, and one which Tracey also covered. As with They Don't Know, she used the same backing track as the MacColl original. Kirsty was a great songwriter who could jump genres with ease and lyrically switch from something like:

There's a guy works down the chip shop swears he's Elvis Just like you swore to me that you'd be true There's a guy works down the chip shop swears he's Elvis But he's a liar and I'm not sure about you.


In this free world baby Got to take it got to grab it Got to get it up and shag it In this free world baby

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by Anonymousreply 179November 28, 2021 2:55 AM

Tracey is amazing and this thread has kept me up watching all the videos. Thank you!

by Anonymousreply 180November 28, 2021 4:06 AM

Her Princess Margaret was a riot. That's pretty much how Margaret actually was IRL.

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by Anonymousreply 181November 28, 2021 4:34 AM

Thank you R181. Was waiting for someone to post that. Hilarious.

by Anonymousreply 182November 28, 2021 4:39 AM

Girl on a Ledge

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by Anonymousreply 183November 28, 2021 5:21 AM

Tracey is one of those rare character actresses that can really disappear into her characters, but even rarer, has a really strong personality of her own (many others who are good in this area, Peter Sellers, or Chris Lilley tend to have very little personality when they are themselves). I have always enjoyed seeing what she's up to, even if I don't think everything she does is the funniest.

Tracey Takes On I think is the best use of her talents. The structure of the show, with short sketches and long sketches (with the occasional entire episode being one sketch with the characters meeting) works best. It had the right number of main characters too - enough to be interesting and to tackle topics from many different angles, but not too many (think there were about 15 all up). It's a pity the entirety of seasons 3 and 4 have never been released. Season 2 would be my vote for the best season all up, though. Also, with this show you didn't have to find everything funny, it was more about watching the characters you were getting to know get into strife.

Ruby and Fern were definitely two of the best realised and most utilised, but my favourite would have to be Linda Granger - remember when she got mauled by a tiger at her Vegas show after taking a milk bath beauty treatment? As an Australian, I will say I find her Australian accents a bit too broad back in the day, but recently she did an uncannily good Germaine Greer.

Second to TTO, I'd say Tracey Breaks the News was my next favourite, there were some seriously funny parts on that (loved the Melaniabot sketches). I have seen a few sketches from The Tracey Ullman Show, and haven't loved that as much, and I have the DVDs of Tracey Ullman's State of the Union, but I found it a bit frenetic, too many characters and too short with the sketches. But there was still some great stuff there, like the Bollywood Pharmacist (singing "there's no shame in erectile dysfunction" haha).

She'd never get away with a lot of the stuff she did nowadays, but I never felt she was being nasty and mocking other people with her character sketches... she always said she loved playing your average, everyday person, and she clearly wants to be able to play all types of people, and I don't think that's offensive. She observes and creates from that. She's mentioned before how much people from the communities she plays love those characters (black people coming up to her to say how much they liked Shaneesha etc). I think she's more comfortable with these characters than real life imitations, but as she has said, that is what people tune in to see. And her Renee Zellweger was very funny.

by Anonymousreply 184November 28, 2021 5:38 AM

Miss Mirren...

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by Anonymousreply 185November 28, 2021 5:41 AM

Theresa May

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by Anonymousreply 186November 28, 2021 5:46 AM

Ullman is really good in the film Plenty. Oscar nomination caliber.

by Anonymousreply 187November 28, 2021 5:57 AM

Tracey at Meryl's AFI award ceremony. Funny.

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by Anonymousreply 188November 28, 2021 6:24 AM

There's none like her. She can write. She can sing. She can act. All well. She'd have been bigger if she'd been better looking.

by Anonymousreply 189November 28, 2021 6:31 AM

btw Ullman has to be talking about Charles Dance in that clip above. He's the only other actor from Plenty that was in the Tunisia scenes with M and Ullman.

by Anonymousreply 190November 28, 2021 6:50 AM

It was Charles Dance.

by Anonymousreply 191November 28, 2021 6:52 AM

Lights Camera Scandal

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by Anonymousreply 192November 28, 2021 10:23 PM

I swear I remember her listed in the production charts of the Hollywood Reporter as being in Death Becomes Her. I don't know if her part got cut or if they even filmed it. I also remember Kevin Kline listed as the male lead instead of Bruce Willis.

by Anonymousreply 193November 29, 2021 3:31 AM

Is there such as too much talent getting in the way of major success? If there is Tracy is the epitome of it.

by Anonymousreply 194November 29, 2021 5:37 AM

Looks like Ullman was cut out of Death Becomes Her.

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by Anonymousreply 195November 29, 2021 5:59 AM

[quote] Is there such as too much talent getting in the way of major success?

Oh, please. She's just not that appealing to a lot of people. That's all there is to it.

by Anonymousreply 196November 29, 2021 6:01 AM

^ She didn't miss much. The film was so forced and unfunny.

by Anonymousreply 197November 29, 2021 6:03 AM

M suggested Tracy for the lead female role in Lawrence Kasdan’s “I Love You To Death”.

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by Anonymousreply 198November 29, 2021 6:05 AM

M is good about calling out costars she thinks are good. She's big that way. Shes said good things about Ullman, Lange, Lohan... I can't think of any others....

by Anonymousreply 199November 29, 2021 6:11 AM

Kay finds her cousin...

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by Anonymousreply 200November 30, 2021 12:33 AM

We get it, r196, we get it. you're all over the thread shitting on her.

by Anonymousreply 201December 1, 2021 1:37 AM
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