DIANNE BUT­LER OUT OF THE BOX

Herald Sun - Switched On - - Wednesday -

BETTY White’s not the only old biddy still get­ting work. I like her and that, but Cloris Leach­man — she’s more my kind of ac­tor. And here they are, the only 80-what­ever-year-olds with jobs and they both hap­pened to be on Mary Tyler Moore last cen­tury. I can’t re­mem­ber them on it, I mainly re­mem­ber the hat go­ing up in the air and the song, and I only re­mem­ber the song be­cause Urge Overkill sam­pled it and turned it into a bet­ter song decades later.

I do, how­ever, re­mem­ber Cloris Leach­man in The Last Pic­ture Show, the best film Peter Bog­danovich ever made. I love this movie. Lovely black and white pho­tog­ra­phy, Texas, Larry McMurtry book ... Cloris Leach­man played a sad house­wife who had an af­fair with a high school boy, won an Os­car. She was ter­rific. She’s noth­ing like that in Rais­ing Hope. She’s blowsy here. Walks around in a bra and cu­lottes, I guess you’d call them, some­times with­out the bra. If this wasn’t My Name Is Earl ter­ri­tory I’d call them capri pants but not on this oc­ca­sion. This is a house­hold that has the iron­ing bas­ket in the liv­ing room. And a cigga off the lip over the fry­ing pan. It’s very, very broad. To the point they’re car­i­ca­tures.

So the son, Jimmy, goes out tonight to get bub­ble gum ice­cream and comes back with a baby. That’s more or less it. You’ll see how it tran­spires. You’ll prob­a­bly watch it. I did, be­cause I love the cast. Cloris, ob­vi­ously, who’s Jimmy’s great­grand­mother, and Martha Plimp­ton his mother, and Gar­ret Dil­lahunt his fa­ther. But they’re giv­ing it all they’ve got then dou­bling it. It’s like as­sault.

I didn’t like My Name Is Earl though, and it’s the same guy writ­ing this. Greg Gar­cia.

There’s vom­it­ing though, from three sep­a­rate char­ac­ters, and some­body is elec­tro­cuted, and I found that amus­ing.

The rest of it is made up of the usual baby for­mula of nap­pies, bath­time and sleep. But there’s also a very strong Mes­sage, which I didn’t need. So in that sense Rais­ing Hope is the same as Mod­ern Fam­ily, only, you know, not as fra­grant. Rais­ing Hope Chan­nel 10,8pm

Blowsy: Cloris Leach­man

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