Skip to main content

On my week with Christian Slater and Amy Sherman-Palladino

As I settle back into a fulltime writing routine (the need for employment sated by savings from a recent contract position), I find that I have also thrown myself back into the cultural pulse of London. The last few weeks have been a rush of theatre, literary events, screenings and exhibitions, each event offering injections of inspiration that get me through the highs and lows of my writing stints at the library.

This week was no different. Except it was.

There is a reason for the lateness in my posting. There were two events I was scheduled to attend this week and I knew I needed to experience both before writing my latest blog post. Because this week, of all weeks (what with women raising their voices against abuse and thus causing the patriarchy to whimper and begins its implosion) I attended events that were very much led by the different sexes.  

I didn’t plan it that way, it just happened.

Firstly, Monday night. Months ago, I secured theatre tickets for Glengarry Glen Ross. I did this for one reason only.

Christian Slater.
Does what it says on the box
Seeing him onstage was not something I was going to pass up, my teenage self wouldn’t allow it. And so I headed to The Playhouse Theatre with my heart in my throat and my teenage self chanting ohmygodohmygod over and over again as I blocked out the fact that winter was very much in the air.

Cut to 9.45pm, the play done, my eyes satisfied with images of a still ridiculously attractive Slater and an overwhelming feeling of… meh. The all-male cast and their salesmen characters felt like they no longer belonged to today’s world. Their laments sounded laughably glib, their privilege oozing with each word they uttered. The production was terrific, as were the actors, but the material was.tired. And I was over it. I couldn’t connect with the characters or the story and I didn’t want to. This isn’t the play for now.

(As a sidebar, because I haven’t managed another blog post about it, the play Venus in Fur with Natalie Dormer and David Oakes very much IS a play for now. Brilliant.)

And so to Thursday night where I attended a screening for the new show from Amy ‘Gilmore Girls’ Sherman-Palladino and Daniel Palladino. My twenty-year-old self was a walking lightning rod of expectation and excitement. Not only was I about to watch the pilot for a show I knew would offer strong female characters and strong female relationships, but I was going to be IN THE SAME ROOM AS THE WOMAN WHO GAVE US LORELAI GILMORE. Ahem. I was looking forward to the night’s festivities.

Two mini bottles of (free) champagne later and the night was anything but ‘meh’. I’m holding judgment on 'The Marvelous Mrs Maisel' for now as we were just shown the pilot, but I could at least breathe a sigh of relief in that, yes, strong female characters and their relationships with each other was front and centre. Thank f*ck.
And it might have been the champagne, or the good will a goodie bag brings, but my goodness it was an event to lift the spirits. Women working together, championing each other and creating content for a wider audience.
Life is better with a goodie bag, not gonna lie.

I only hope it continues.

As ASP rightly said, until there is more balance at the top with women in just as many seats of power as men – and this is true of any industry – nothing will really change. The expectation of privilege will still lead to the abuse and unfair treatment of those with less power, the cycle spinning on and on. It’s no longer time for tired material that holds a mirror up to how things used to be. It’s time for a new vision. A new way forward. A new way of working together. Of creating a world that isn’t the clusterf*ck it is right now.

It’s time to expect, to want, to demand more. 


Popular posts from this blog

On the existential crisis of the weekend

  Weekends used to be what life was for. Two days of freedom and relief from the weekday routine, from the grind of office life, from waking up with an alarm. The sweet, giddy euphoria of a Friday night was made all the more intoxicating if you had plans to socialise, go to a gig, watch a film, eat at your local Italian. Not only did you get your socialising/culture/food fix in, but you then had two more days of doing the very same thing. The weekend also offered endless pottering-around-the-house hours since usually it was a space you scarcely saw during the week. A Saturday started with a little light cleaning was one sure way to make you feel as if you were ahead in the productivity stakes, and made the Netflix binge that followed feel earned.   Friday night was balanced out by the cold sweats of Sunday evening but still, the weekend was always worth it, regardless of whether you didn’t move from the couch after Friday night work drinks, or because you p

On my first trip abroad

  I took my first overseas trip when I was in year eleven. It was to Noum é a, New Caledonia and it almost didn’t happen. The trip’s purpose was to improve the French language skills of those of us insistent on studying French during our last two years of school, believing the subject a necessity for our futures when we would most certainly be in Paris living our best French lives being all Parisian and speaking fluent French and just being all chic in our Frenchness and you get the picture. The first step on this road to being so Frenchy so chic, was a week’s trip to this South Pacific island wherein we would live with the locals, have 3-hour French lessons each day and immerse ourselves in the otherworldness that comes with visiting a place far removed from that in which you live. But whether it was the 3-hour lessons or the 3-hour flight, not enough of my classmates put their hands up to make this trip a reality. Cue teenage woe-is-me angst, the shedding of many tears, threats

On learning a new skill

So how many new skills have you mastered during this Covid-19? Are you fluent in Latin? French? Turkish? Is your personal brand lighting up Twitter/Instagram/Facebook as you sell the wellness candles you cooked up in the kitchen after you created an online festival but before finishing a new dress made from scraps around the house you can wear when you next meet a friend for ‘exercise’ with a keep cup full of ‘coffee’? Spoiler, it has wine inside. Thought so. But guess what. It seems that if you haven’t managed to generally improve yourself, and a substantial number of people online, during this dire time of unprecedented crappness, then apparently you’re doing it wrong. (Bonus points if said improvement was expressed in a language other than that with which you were born). Having missed this chance at enlightenment earlier in the Covid-19 mayhem, this week I decided to give it a go. To change up lockdown life for the better. I vowed that no longer would I spend my