Kanna Ophelia (kannaophelia) wrote,
Kanna Ophelia

Vintage lesbians!

[personal profile] romana03 and I treated ourselves to the Joan Hicks Miss Marple 1980s adaptations a while back, and we've been watching them through. They are pretty much the best adaptations of anything ever - right up there with the Hunger Games and Order of the Phoenix movies and the 1980s BBC and more recent ITV Jane Eyres and the early (NOT later) David Suchet Poirots. (I'm not counting adaptations that I only love because they bear hardly any resemblance to source material but are vastly better, like Miyazaki's freely interpreted adaptations of Howl's Moving Castle and The Borrowers.)

Part of what makes this adaptation perfect is seeing Miss Hinchcliffe and Miss Murgatroyd from A Murder is Announced as if they were taken from behind my eyes when I read, and they are SO ADORABLE. They are what I think of as my vintage butch/femme portrayal ideal. (And, yes, I think they were explicitly intended as a lesbian couple by Christie. I've never understood why people think Christie is somehow oblivious to the existence of non-heterosexual people when Miss Marple's nephew EXPLICITLY talks about his house proud queer friend and then worries that his dear protected Aunt Jane won't know what he means, and of course she does because Miss Marple is a dreadful and uncannily accurate old gossip. No one involved in theatre and general intellectual and writing circles in Christie's era would not have come across gay men and lesbians.)

Just look at these Hinch and Murgatroyd clips - especially the scene with the Inspector. SQUEE.


I want more portrayals like that. It worries me a bit that I default to writing fourteen-to-twenty year old lesbians -- a side effect of coming through anime/manga/gaming and school story (including HP) fandoms, plus Xena, because Gabrielle was obviously written much younger than she was cast. There need to be more positive portrayals of overweight middle aged and elderly butch/femme lesbians who don't wear makeup or pretty clothes.

The newer Granada adaptations? SPOILED EVERYTHING. Apparently, you can't have lesbians on TV unless they are something out of Tipping the Velvet, i.e. young, hot, and appealing to men. And they totally screwed up Miss Marple's response. Miss Marple's social circle's idea of being tolerant of lesbian couples is being too well-bred to notice the obvious while still respecting the depth of the bond they have together, not all this wink-wink nudge-nudge I'm on your side girls stuff. Worst of all was comparing lesbianism to adultery because hey, it's all forbidden love. Only one kind involves the deep betrayal of another human being, natch. And having Miss Marple have adulterous memories is so out of character and out of canon it makes me spit. We know what Miss Marple's teenage love life was like..
Tags: lesbians, squee, tv
  • Post a new comment


    Anonymous comments are disabled in this journal

    default userpic

    Your reply will be screened

    Your IP address will be recorded