Why Your Favorite Authors are Raving About The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel
I never watch anything, and I'm glued to this show. It has amazing casting. Terrific acting. Snappy, hilarious dialogue. And a super cool wardrobe. But forgetting all that, the real reason every female writer I know is addicted is the kickass dialectic about artistic risk-taking.
Let me explain.
At the start of the show, it's Miriam's husband who's trying to become a comedian. We all know that's hard, right? As another character will eventually tell Miriam, "Everybody bombs. A lot."
Can't you just feel all the novelists nodding along?
Well. Miriam's husband bombs. Once. For like ten minutes. But Joel can't take it. He falls apart. He throws a grenade into his life, basically, because he's been told his whole life that he's special, and he just found out that he's a tiny bit less special than he thought. And that's it. He can't deal.
But Miriam can. She doesn't always make the right choices. She bombs, too. And it hurts! Badly. Those scenes are hard to watch. She has her moment of horror and freaks out. But then? She goes back. She tries again. Whoops! Another failure in front of people. Stand up comedy is a novelist's idea of a horror flick. Hot lights and too much attention. Most of us prefer to suffer our failures in quiet rooms behind our computer screens.
She bombs publicly. And often. Somehow she dusts herself off and does it all again. She succeeds where her husband failed because she just keeps showing up.
Pop Culture is full of success and failure stories. But this one is uniquely feminist, arriving at an odd moment in sexual politics.
It's fabulous. It's current. And it rings so true. Go forth and enjoy the wisdom as well as the fashion. And your neighborhood novelist will make you some popcorn and watch, too.