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S01.E04: The Disappointment of the Dionne Quintuplets

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54 minutes ago, ElectricBoogaloo said:

They did reach an agreement but it was for the Abe to buy half of the apartment from Moishe and then the two of them would hold on to the apartment (instead of Moishe selling it) until Joel and Midge reconciled and moved back into the apartment together

Yes, but why wouldn't Midge stay there with the kids (Abe's and Moshe's grandchildren)? I can imagine it *might* have been unseemly for her to have moved into a new place as a single mom, but to the outside world, here she would still be Mrs. Maisel living in the Maisel home.

ETA: I mean, why other than hijinks in her parents' home? It seems like there would be equal opportunity for hijinks in her own home, as well as transporting the kids to the grandparents for childcare. It seems we're missing a piece of the cultural puzzle.

Edited by shapeshifter

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6 minutes ago, shapeshifter said:

Yes, but why wouldn't Midge stay there with the kids (Abe's and Moshe's grandchildren)? I can imagine it *might* have been unseemly for her to have moved into a new place as a single mom, but to the outside world, here she would still be Mrs. Maisel living in the Maisel home.

ETA: I mean, why other than hijinks in her parents' home? It seems like there would be equal opportunity for hijinks in her own home, as well as transporting the kids to the grandparents for childcare. It seems we're missing a piece of the cultural puzzle.

It wasn't stated out loud, but my belief is that once Abe saw Midge turn Joel down, he reneged on the deal, so Moshe went ahead and sold it.

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On 2/4/2018 at 4:42 PM, bonniejmac said:

The Dionne family was a pretty devout Catholic one and one of the quints even became a nun (or was on the way to becoming one when she died, unexpectedly, very young). So maybe that's where the judgement part came from?The quints would have been about the same age as Miriam - I forget exactly when they were born but it was in the early 30s and although they were Canadian, they were hugely popular in the US as well - they appeared in all kinds of ads and endorsements - perhaps they were always held up to her as a role model of sorts? 

Young Midge had apparently been swept up in the public fascination with the Quints, and their unabashed exploitation by any interest that came near them. Framed and carefully hung on the wall of Midge's childhood bedroom are a few pictures of the Quints, surrounding a certificate declaring Midge a member of the official Dionne Quintuplet Fan Club.

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23 hours ago, shapeshifter said:

Yes, but why wouldn't Midge stay there with the kids (Abe's and Moshe's grandchildren)? I can imagine it *might* have been unseemly for her to have moved into a new place as a single mom, but to the outside world, here she would still be Mrs. Maisel living in the Maisel home.

ETA: I mean, why other than hijinks in her parents' home? It seems like there would be equal opportunity for hijinks in her own home, as well as transporting the kids to the grandparents for childcare. It seems we're missing a piece of the cultural puzzle.

The agreement between the two fathers was that the would give the apartment back to Joel and Miriam after they reconciled. Until then, it's being taken away from them as a punishment.

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I initially was struck by a comment that Suzie made about the luxury life Midge has where she can just do standup for fun vs trying to make a living.  My parents don't live in this country anymore and I'm jealous AF to see Midge drop off her kids all the time.  Even when my parents lived  a few cities over, babysitting was strictly for work only.  A 'date night' or me hanging out with friends was my own problem.  

I am in love with Midge's wardrobe, big time.  I wish I could wear hats and gloves and not look like I was trying too hard to be retro. 

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3 hours ago, CurlyATX said:

I initially was struck by a comment that Suzie made about the luxury life Midge has where she can just do standup for fun vs trying to make a living.  My parents don't live in this country anymore and I'm jealous AF to see Midge drop off her kids all the time.  Even when my parents lived  a few cities over, babysitting was strictly for work only.  A 'date night' or me hanging out with friends was my own problem.  

I am in love with Midge's wardrobe, big time.  I wish I could wear hats and gloves and not look like I was trying too hard to be retro. 

I feel you. Neither of us had any family around, and babysitters were scarce.

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On 12/2/2017 at 7:43 AM, aradia22 said:

Peggy does NOT look 21, btw.

I'm not sure who Peggy is.  Did you mean Penny?

So is it just me (or am I just mis-remembering my youth), or are there a lot of anachronisms in this show? I'm not talking about the music, even though many of the selections were recorded after the period in which the show takes place. I'm referring to references in the dialogue. For example, in this episode, the comic/ventriloquist made a joke which referred to "doing someone," as in having sex with him or her. I don't recall that expression being in common usage until MUCH later-- like the '80s. Similarly, Midge refers to a "two-for-one pantyhose sale" at the rally in the park. Were pantyhose even around in 1958? I suppose it's possible they existed, but they certainly were not in the mainstream. Women wore nylon stockings until well into the '60s.

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On 2/13/2018 at 12:09 PM, CurlyATX said:

I initially was struck by a comment that Suzie made about the luxury life Midge has where she can just do standup for fun vs trying to make a living.  My parents don't live in this country anymore and I'm jealous AF to see Midge drop off her kids all the time.  Even when my parents lived  a few cities over, babysitting was strictly for work only.  A 'date night' or me hanging out with friends was my own problem.  

I am in love with Midge's wardrobe, big time.  I wish I could wear hats and gloves and not look like I was trying too hard to be retro. 

Same here. When I was little, my aunts, uncle, and grandparents all lived near each other, about an hour away from my house. Babysitting from any of them happened very rarely since it would require my parents to drive an hour to their house and then an hour back to our house (or vice versa). On the rare occasion that one of them babysat us, we made it a slumber party. My family moved to another state when I was a little bit older and we had NO relatives so my parents didn't go away by themselves until I was old enough to watch my sisters.

When I met Mr. EB, on the other hand, he had so many stories about the fun things he did with his many aunts and uncles and his grandparents because they all lived very close by. Sometimes his grandparents would pick him up after school so he could hang out with them. His uncles took him to baseball games. At the time that he told me these stories, I was a little envious that he got to spend so much time with his different family members as he grew up.

But then when his brother had his first kid, it made me realize not just how lucky the kids are to have relatives nearby but how lucky the PARENTS are to have reliable babysitters who are a short drive away.

Midge is really lucky that she can leave her kids with her parents ALL DAY and just come home to a dinner that someone else has already cooked. Having childcare and domestic help makes a world of difference to parents, but especially to single parents. What would Midge be doing if she didn't have her parents to fall back on? They have given her a rent free place to live, free 24 hour childcare, free meals, and I'm assuming some money for her expenses.

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Yup! My immigrant parents didn't raise us with any family nearby- though we did have a few family friends but again, for emergencies.  My husband grew up very close to his cousins, even after they moved to different states they would visit for weeks/months at a time.  My sister in law gets to have her mom as a live in and it's amazing... free child care plus the grandkids have a connection to their grandmother.  

Going back to Midge and what she'd do... this is a good question.  Was child support and alimony something that happened in the 60s? Or would she be expected to try and find a new husband asap?  

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51 minutes ago, CurlyATX said:

Going back to Midge and what she'd do... this is a good question.  Was child support and alimony something that happened in the 60s? Or would she be expected to try and find a new husband asap?  

Of course child support and alimony were options in the 60s. Alimony was practically a given because it was expected that women who had stayed at home during the marriage to keep house and raise the children would continue to do so and would need some income over and above child support. Childless women also routinely got alimony if they had stayed home before the divorce.

Edited by orza
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44 minutes ago, CurlyATX said:

Was child support and alimony something that happened in the 60s? Or would she be expected to try and find a new husband asap?  

 Yes. And yes. (Just not among the husbands in her social circle, which might drastically contract.)

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I think that at this point, not a lot of time has passed since Joel left and they haven’t filed for divorce so Joel isn’t legally required to pay alimonynor child support. He should be doing it on his own since he knows that Midge has no other source of income, but he may not be giving her any money since (1) he knows she’s living with her parents rent-free and (2) Moishe said Joel hadn’t been good at saving money - and that was when he and Midge were living in an apartment that his father had paid for. If they were barely getting by on Joel’s salary when they had no monthly rent, he must be stretched pretty thin on the same salary while renting and furnishing a new apartment (unless his dad is footing the bill for that too).

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9 hours ago, Pallas said:

 

10 hours ago, CurlyATX said:

Was child support and alimony something that happened in the 60s? Or would she be expected to try and find a new husband asap?  

Yes. And yes.

I wondered about alimony in the time and place of the show too. According to Wikipedia, alimony has been around since 1754 BCE (https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alimony), in surprisingly (to me) consistant forms.

My father, who was born in Brooklyn in 1923 in an ethnically similar but economically lower situation, never stopped asking when I was going to remarry after I was divorced in 1991 with no alimony (my father passed in 2015).

When Joel:

Spoiler

screwed the pooch on his chance to make it big in the firm

—I thought it might have been at least in part because he didn't want to pay alimony because then Midge wouldn't need him  as her husband.

Edited by shapeshifter
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On 1/15/2018 at 12:40 PM, Nidratime said:

I think the person with the funniest lines in this show is Suzy. *She* should have a stand-up act. That being said, I think Midge can be quite observant and witty and sarcastically funny, which was all in evidence when she was in Joel's new apartment confronting him and Penny. All of that part was funny to me.

A.

As for Midge's parents confronting her for coming in at 2:00 a.m., I'm mostly on Midge's side on this since she is a 26 year old adult. H,.

.

And, yes, I agree. That Red Skelton impersonation was awful. I kept asking myself, who's that guy? The emcee? When is Red coming on? (Red was not that fat.)

. This a thousand times. Susie is much funnier. The writing for Midge's comedy is uneven. Sometimes funny Sometimes not. This is a fault of the writing. Or are we supposed to understand the Susie character as someone who is funny but would never be a performer but could discover performers?

The Red Skelton impression was inexplicably terrible. Did they think no one is around who could still remember Red Skelton?

The parents are a particular type of overly intrusive narcissitic control freaks who also would completely reject comedy as a goal, meaning that she cannot tell them what she is really doing leading to that awful confrontation where they are treating her like a child but she still can't really explain what she is doing. So she realized she had to get a job and get out. Very realistic, I thought. Painful to watch. 

On 2/14/2018 at 12:40 AM, J-Man said:

I'm not sure who Peggy is.  Did you mean Penny?

So is it just me (or am I just mis-remembering my youth), or are there a lot of anachronisms in this show? I'm not talking about the music, even though many of the selections were recorded after the period in which the show takes place. I'm referring to references in the dialogue. For example, in this episode, the comic/ventriloquist made a joke which referred to "doing someone," as in having sex with him or her. I don't recall that expression being in common usage until MUCH later-- like the '80s. Similarly, Midge refers to a "two-for-one pantyhose sale" at the rally in the park. Were pantyhose even around in 1958? I suppose it's possible they existed, but they certainly were not in the mainstream. Women wore nylon stockings until well into the '60s.

Pantyhose was definitely an anachronism. She should have said nylons. There have been other expressions that were wrong too. 

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4 hours ago, GussieK said:

. This a thousand times. Susie is much funnier. The writing for Midge's comedy is uneven. Sometimes funny Sometimes not. This is a fault of the writing. Or are we supposed to understand the Susie character as someone who is funny but would never be a performer but could discover performers?

The Red Skelton impression was inexplicably terrible. Did they think no one is around who could still remember Red Skelton?

The parents are a particular type of overly intrusive narcissitic control freaks who also would completely reject comedy as a goal, meaning that she cannot tell them what she is really doing leading to that awful confrontation where they are treating her like a child but she still can't really explain what she is doing. So she realized she had to get a job and get out. Very realistic, I thought. Painful to watch. 

Pantyhose was definitely an anachronism. She should have said nylons. There have been other expressions that were wrong too. 

I remember wearing a garter belt when I first started wearing "grown-up" clothes in middle school in the late 60s. I was so thankful when pantyhose were available, not long after. 

Now I just laugh at TV when they show garters and hose fastened so you can't take off your panties.

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5 hours ago, GussieK said:

. This a thousand times. Susie is much funnier. The writing for Midge's comedy is uneven. Sometimes funny Sometimes not. This is a fault of the writing. Or are we supposed to understand the Susie character as someone who is funny but would never be a performer but could discover performers?

I think, at this point in the story, Midge's comedy is supposed to be uneven.  She's still green and learning how to do this and most of her performances have been when she was smashed.  I do think Susie as a character is funny, but I'm not sure she's the stand-up-comedy type of funny.  I'm still holding onto my belief that she's a failed comic, trying to live vicariously through Midge.

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13 hours ago, GussieK said:

The Red Skelton impression was inexplicably terrible

I assumed it was supposed to be terrible to illustrate that Midge was already better than a lot of other acts.

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On 2/17/2018 at 8:08 PM, shapeshifter said:

I assumed it was supposed to be terrible to illustrate that Midge was already better than a lot of other acts.

Sorry I was not clear. Actually I was referring to the impression of Red Skelton sounding nothing like the real Red Skelton. I don't think we were supposed to take away that Midge was funnier or more polished than a big star like Red Skelton.  

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1 hour ago, GussieK said:

Sorry I was not clear. Actually I was referring to the impression of Red Skelton sounding nothing like the real Red Skelton. I don't think we were supposed to take away that Midge was funnier or more polished than a big star like Red Skelton.  

I suspect I may be remembering it wrong and thus sowing confusion.
I thought the show had an actor who was playing a character who was supposed to be badly impersonating Red Skelton.
Was it instead an actor who was actually supposed to be Red Skelton? If so, the actor must never have watched any clips of the real Red Skelton. I never cared for the real Red Skelton, but maybe I was too young to appreciate whatever he was doing that was supposed to be funny. At least, IMO, they at least got that right on this show.

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3 hours ago, shapeshifter said:

I suspect I may be remembering it wrong and thus sowing confusion.
I thought the show had an actor who was playing a character who was supposed to be badly impersonating Red Skelton.
Was it instead an actor who was actually supposed to be Red Skelton? If so, the actor must never have watched any clips of the real Red Skelton. I never cared for the real Red Skelton, but maybe I was too young to appreciate whatever he was doing that was supposed to be funny. At least, IMO, they at least got that right on this show.

It was supposed to be the real Red Skelton. He had that variety show when I was a kid, and he would do those goofy routines like Clem Kadiddlehopper. I was surprised to see him performing standup at a place like the Copa. I never thought of him as that kind of performer. 

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17 hours ago, GussieK said:

It was supposed to be the real Red Skelton. He had that variety show when I was a kid, and he would do those goofy routines like Clem Kadiddlehopper. I was surprised to see him performing standup at a place like the Copa. I never thought of him as that kind of performer. 

Ah. Thanks for clearing that up.
His lengthy Wikipedia entry seems to only show him doing television in 1958, but The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel isn't supposed to be a documentary, so Red Skelton doing stand up at that point doesn't bother me. And just because it didn't seem like the Red Skelton I recalled doesn't mean he wasn't like that in some venues. 
Anyway, the most interesting and relevant part I read was:

Quote

…[Edna Stillwell] approached Skelton…and told him that she did not like his jokes; he asked if she could do better.[23] They married in 1931 in Kansas City, and Edna began writing his material…When they learned that Skelton's salary was to be cut, Edna went to see the boss; he resented the interference, until she came away with not only a raise, but additional considerations as well. (https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Red_Skelton#Burlesque_to_vaudeville_(1929–1937))

I wonder if this was inspiration or coincidence regarding Midge's relationship with Joel.

Edited by shapeshifter · Reason: Damn autocorrect

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On 12/25/2017 at 6:38 PM, LisaM said:

I worried the whole time Midge took her eye off of Ethan in the park so she could attend the rally. 

Given the grandchildren, I can't believe that Moishe and Abe wouldn't have worked out an arrangement even after Midge said No to Joel coming back. 

This is what gave me pause about the necessity of the move.   Abe is bothered enough by his grandson's tv intrusion that he's willing to risk a tantrum.    It's supposed to track that this man who's super pedantic about his space, noise, personal boundaries and the "option" to open his office door lol would rather deal with the disturbance of all of that than have his daughter and grandchildren stay in their apartment.   Because, after all........

On 12/21/2017 at 3:34 PM, biakbiak said:

Joel's dad owns the apartment, the agreement was that Abe would buyout half of Moishe's share not pay rent. 

Have I muddled the timing?  Does Abe make this offer after Midge and the babies move in?     And, I got stuck on:   what rent?   Each dad had agreed to own 1/2.     Be advised that in my mind Moishe had purchased this place outright.   Especially given how he'd carried on about the Maisels finally being "good enough", it didn't occur that the arrangement was more like he'd put down a deposit and Joel was paying the mortgage when it seemed fairly important to him to keep up with the Weissmans.   

The real estate porn on this show.   Oy! 

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3 hours ago, ZaldamoWilder said:

And, I got stuck on:   what rent? 

There was no rent. My post was responding to someone who thought they were renting. 

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Just now, biakbiak said:

There was no rent. My post was responding to someone who thought they were renting. 

gotcha.  sometimes I get stuck in neutral.  ;)

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The deal relied on Moishe, and for Moishe, the deal was all about Abe. When he could force Abe to partner with him in order to keep a roof over the head of Abe's abandoned daughter -- long enough for both father and daughter to learn a little humility -- that was one thing. But when Abe's daughter spurned Moishe's son, that was another. The deal was off. Midge and kids in Abe's spare rooms was good enough for all of 'em.

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On 12/2/2017 at 9:43 AM, aradia22 said:

Eyeroll at Miriam taking over the rally and temporarily becoming a leading voice in the advocacy of... something. Sort of feminism? Don't give me fake progressive characters. It is beneath you and it insults the viewer's intelligence to pander like that. You want to tell that story? Write a compelling show about an actual activist.

Oy, I'm with you on the eyeroll express.  I'm getting a little tired of Midge's ability to charm everyone with her incessant babbling.

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On 19/12/2017 at 2:10 AM, Guest said:

I wish this show was funny.  I understand Midge's last two sets were supposed to be bombs but to me no one has really been funny since the pilot, including Lenny Bruce and Red Skelton.  I don't know if they're using actual period jokes for them, which I guess they'd have more of an excuse since a lot of what was funny then just isn't now.  But I think they could pick from their material that is still funny.  And they could make the show in its entirety funnier.  Even the jokes that are supposed to be funny leave me looking blank-faced like the recent Gaslight audiences. 

For some reason, every show I've seen that depicts comics is really unfunny? I'm not sure why. Maybe it's the subconscious thought that we think "this moment is SUPPOSED/IS GOING to be funny" so we raise our standards? Or maybe the pressure to be funny in the writers room is too much so it feels unnatural. I feel like if they're going to make a show about stand up comedy, maybe having stand up comics write it would help.

Other than that, I do love the show. It feels more tiny smile funny, rather than laugh out loud, and the drama so far has been the focal point of the emotion, narrative and enjoyment for me, rather than the comedy.

Edited by shumalek
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16 hours ago, shumalek said:

maybe having stand up comics write it would help.

Most do. It’s just a very different process and it reads differently. It takes a shit ton of time to even come up with a “tight five” much less a lot of material and a recognizable standup voice.

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21 hours ago, shumalek said:

It feels more tiny smile funny, rather than laugh out loud

—which was how I remember Gilmore Girls, but I only watched some of the early seasons, and on both GG and TMMM I see:

21 hours ago, shumalek said:

the drama [is] the focal point of the emotion . . . rather than the comedy

I have a low tolerance for soapy relationship drama, but so far TMMM's drama feels to me to be more about women's issues than was GG.
Amy Sherman-Palladino's snappy-patter dialogue was the only thing I enjoyed on GG, even though it was never LOL-funny for me. On TMMM, the running patter of the dialogue feels more like background mood music or sometimes even like a replay of the soundtrack of my family where a clever verbal barb was an acceptable vehicle for criticism or complaint, like when I ended an argument with my then-husband by eliciting a "tiny smile" (™@shumalek) with, "Your father makes my mother look like Mother Teresa."
I guess if delivered in a stand up setting that line could be LOL funny. IDK.
I rarely LOL at comedy, never attend live stand up, watch very little comedy, and am generally taken by surprise when a comment I make in the workplace makes people laugh. So maybe I should delete this entire post and not comment on the subject of comedy, but here's my 2 cents worth, which, at today's rates, means I probably owe y'all each a buck for reading.

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5 hours ago, shapeshifter said:

—which was how I remember Gilmore Girls, but I only watched some of the early seasons, and on both GG and TMMM I see:

I have a low tolerance for soapy relationship drama, but so far TMMM's drama feels to me to be more about women's issues than was GG.
Amy Sherman-Palladino's snappy-patter dialogue was the only thing I enjoyed on GG, even though it was never LOL-funny for me. On TMMM, the running patter of the dialogue feels more like background mood music or sometimes even like a replay of the soundtrack of my family where a clever verbal barb was an acceptable vehicle for criticism or complaint, like when I ended an argument with my then-husband by eliciting a "tiny smile" (™@shumalek) with, "Your father makes my mother look like Mother Teresa."
I guess if delivered in a stand up setting that line could be LOL funny. IDK.
I rarely LOL at comedy, never attend live stand up, watch very little comedy, and am generally taken by surprise when a comment I make in the workplace makes people laugh. So maybe I should delete this entire post and not comment on the subject of comedy, but here's my 2 cents worth, which, at today's rates, means I probably owe y'all each a buck for reading.

Comedy is for everyone. Anyone with an opinion on it can share it. What I love about the genre is that it reaches people very differently from that of a drama. With dramas the story and character arcs are *typically* received similarly amongst the audience, but with comedies we all find different things funny; some of us love the shows with LOL moments like Modern Family, whilst others thrive on the slower paced, slight giggle stuff like Atlanta. So all opinions on comedy are valid!

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I'm not sure Senator Kennedy of Massachusetts would have been on the radar screen of a New Yorker in 1958 - his father, as her father noted, was actually much more well-known at the time. The Jane Jacobs fight for Washington Square made a big impact in New York City, and it's nice to see that ASP thought about it enough to include it here: https://www.theguardian.com/cities/2016/apr/28/story-cities-32-new-york-jane-jacobs-robert-moses

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9 hours ago, CousinAmy said:

I'm not sure Senator Kennedy of Massachusetts would have been on the radar screen of a New Yorker in 1958 - his father, as her father noted, was actually much more well-known at the time. The Jane Jacobs fight for Washington Square made a big impact in New York City, and it's nice to see that ASP thought about it enough to include it here: https://www.theguardian.com/cities/2016/apr/28/story-cities-32-new-york-jane-jacobs-robert-moses

I think he probably was. He'd been in congress for over 10 years at that point - 6 years in the House and in the Senate since 1953, wrote Profiles in Courage in 1957 - which won the Pulitzer Prize, and he and Jackie were an "it" couple, they were both considered very attractive and were in the limelight. And Massachusetts and New York share a border, with Boston being around 200 miles away from NYC. I would be surprised if he wasn't well known, myself.

Edited by Clanstarling
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Kennedy regained national attention at the 1956 Democratic convention in Chicago -- only the second to be televised -- and never lost it again. Nominee Adlai Stevenson allowed the delegates to choose his running mate, and JFK had his name put forward. The balloting lasted three rounds before he was defeated by Estes Kefauver. 

This bid by the 39-year-old freshman senator had been intended only as advance work for the 1960 election, when President Eisenhower would no longer be the opposing candidate. But it succeeded beyond expectations; it elevated Kennedy back into popular notice, and into party-wide consideration.

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On 12/17/2017 at 7:55 AM, Clanstarling said:

Since we've known absolutely nothing about Susie up to this point, every new aspect of her is "sudden", so I don't think this is necessarily pejorative. I agree about the Red Foxx, but if they're going to go there, it would be good for her to see his less censored stand-up. The man was not a family friendly comedian.

Eh, the high profile and charismatic senator contemplating a run for the Presidency seems relevant to the time to me.  That is when Kennedy started preparing for the 1960 election.

It was a horrible impression, in my opinion. We used to watch him when I was a child, I loved him. He had a very specific way of talking - this fella was nothing like him. He should have watched some old performances.

I rather liked the flashback scenes - I've packed up and moved two houses (one because of divorce, one for a big move) and those kinds of memories are part of the process - painful and nostalgic both.

Joel moving in with PP (I can never remember her names) was a surprise, given the way he was ducking her call last episode. 

We're in at least 1962.

They got married in 1958 and the next scene was 4 years later, so 1962. Kennedy had been in office for 2 years at this point.

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4 hours ago, Rosebud1970 said:

We're in at least 1962.

They got married in 1958 and the next scene was 4 years later, so 1962. Kennedy had been in office for 2 years at this point.

The second season takes place in 1959, so I'm guessing this season is 1958 - and the wedding was a flashback.

Edited by Clanstarling
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