This past Sunday I watched The Dust Bowl by Ken Burns on PBS because that’s the kind of high-falutin’ broad I am.
I’ve always been intrigued by this piece of history because it seems to be so absurdly biblical in size and tone. From the sky going black in the middle of the day to the locusts, it smacks of the rapture.
It was a fantastic show and I learned a lot. Especially about the general futility of dusting.
But, after watching all the death, depression, suicide and dirt, I needed a drink and to surf to a show that would balance the sadness and make me feel a bit more lighthearted.
But, instead, I had the exceptional misfortune of coming across Liz and Dick on Lifetime.
Like a lot of you, I’ve been hearing about Lindsay playing Elizabeth Taylor for months and months as the big event that will give La Lohan’s career a second (or third or fourth) chance.
I can only hope that there is an infinite number of second chances in the universe or I will be sorely vexed by the Lohans, Downey Jrs. and Gibsons of the world.
So, figuring that nothing could be as devastating as the Dust Bowl, I hunkered down with my box of Good & Plenty’s and joined the other 3.5 million of you.
Wow. I was so wrong. This was actually much harder to watch than poor farmers losing their homes and land, losing children to lung disease and families starving.
So, in light of this, I will now write an open letter to the director, producer, exec or other brainchild who decided it would be a great idea to crap all over the memory of one of our celebrity legends.
Dear Lifetime Miscreants,
I get it, I really do. There is major bank to be made by casting Lindsay Lohan in just about anything. I know that, as experts in “Television for Women”, you are well aware that those of us with a vagina are none too keen on math.
Instead, in your worldview, we dedicate ourselves to killing our husbands whilst in a jealous rage, seeking counseling for our alcoholism due to our sexual abuse as children, or we are unjustly deterred in an all-women’s prison all the while looking pretty hot.
But, I gotta figure that, you guys were thinking you’d be raking in some serious cash on the backs of all of the train-wreck watchers.
I have never been a big fan of LiLo as she has repeatedly pooped all over my most beloved childhood memories. Herbie Fully Loaded was a blow, but The Parent Trap put me into the fetal position. I’m sure Hayley Mills is rolling over in her grave.
(I just looked it up and Hayley Mills is very much alive and not actually all that old so I officially apologize to Ms. Mills.)
But, beyond the Disney remakes, Lindsay is simply not a very good actress. She got by on freckled cuteness fine at the beginning but that charm is loooong gone.
With the exception of Mean Girls, which was good ONLY because of Tina Fey’s writing (a stump can be hilarious if Tina writes for it). I sort of want a shot of penicillin just looking at her.
There are dozens of other talented actresses who could have kicked butt in the role of Elizabeth Taylor. But, I understand, talent is not what this was about.
Here, let me get out my pink, bedazzled abacus and give this math thing a run: Given the cost of insuring someone like Lindsay Lohan (easily $400,000 PER DAY to keep her off whatever she’s on) the advertising dollars could still make up for it (probably to the tune of $300,000 for a 30-second spot). But, then factor in that you got only about half the viewers you thought you’d get…
Not that you run the risk of losing your farms or being descended upon by locusts. Doubtful that there will be any really long-term pain from this.
Except, of course, your contribution to our cultural Dust Bowl.
Yeah, thanks for that.
Long time critic, first time watcher.