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7 Responses

  1. norbizness
    norbizness October 26, 2011 at 10:00 am |

    Jill Talley’s DVD commentary on this episode of Mr. Show (the first 3-4 minutes) sounds eerily similar to this post; she’s been in sketch since the mid-80s (starting off with Bob Odenkirk, Robert Smigel, and Conan O’Brien back in the day in Chicago).

    The quote is “if you guys wrote a good female character, you’d probably end up playing them yourselves” to which David Cross replied “No, no… we’d get Scott Thompson as a guest star.”

  2. mk
    mk October 26, 2011 at 10:22 am |

    Before shows, one of the other women in my college improv group used to joke, “Okay, I’ll be the babysitter, the mom and the girlfriend–you be the wife, the little girl and the talking doll.” Except she wasn’t really joking. When I was a frosh the group was just about fifty/fifty, but by the time I graduated I was one of only two women.

    To be fair, I did a lot of gender bending (as we all did) in scenes, and it would be hard to say that the dudes in the group forced us into traditional female roles, because hey, nobody’s making you jump on stage for a particular scene, and while a lot of your character comes from suggestions your scene partners make, you also have a lot of agency when it comes to character development.

    Still, I think there’s a lot to be said for all-female or female-driven troupes. Many of the most talented improvisers I know are women, and while I love all the guys I’ve improvised with or been involved in theatrical productions with, I’ve always really, really loved getting to work with a female director and other female improvisers.

  3. andie
    andie October 26, 2011 at 11:48 am |

    norbizness:
    Jill Talley’s DVD commentary on this episode of Mr. Show (the first 3-4 minutes) sounds eerily similar to this post; she’s been in sketch since the mid-80s (starting off with Bob Odenkirk, Robert Smigel, and Conan O’Brien back in the day in Chicago).

    The quote is “if you guys wrote a good female character, you’d probably end up playing them yourselves” to which David Cross replied “No, no… we’d get Scott Thompson as a guest star.”

    But Dave made the best looking woman..

  4. Comrade Kevin
    Comrade Kevin October 26, 2011 at 2:47 pm |

    I wonder if things have regressed a bit. I’ve been watching most of the first few seasons of Saturday Night Live and have been impressed at how prominent are the female stars.

    Jane Curtin, Gildna Radner, and Laraine Newman each bought their own unique flair to the role, plus characters they developed themselves. Newman was more of a character actor, but still played a large role.

  5. Bridget
    Bridget October 26, 2011 at 8:17 pm |

    Kudos to you for facing your fears and creating your own show. I’ve done one-woman shows before, they are a great thing to have in your repertoire (and you can rehearse without worrying about anyone else’s schedule conflicts)!

  6. HannahK
    HannahK October 27, 2011 at 8:59 am |

    Congratulations on your show Meghan, and high fives to you for taking ownership of your situation and creating a better one for yourself. I think as long as we comedians with vaginas let themselves be swept along by the tides of culture, we’re only going to experience the changes that our audiences think we’re ready for. It’s up to us to write better material for ourselves, find cool people to perform with, and teach our audiences that comedy doesn’t always have to be a straight masculine thing.
    In other words, keep up the good work. :)

  7. Christine Tarbet
    Christine Tarbet October 27, 2011 at 8:04 pm |

    I’m in a sketch group too (the only girl), but I’ve been really good at keeping a feminist spin on our comedy. Here’s our latest video on free bleeding. ;)

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