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S03.E10: A Very GLOW Christmas

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I FFed through most of this season. Like a lot of initially brilliant shows, it seemed to wander and then run out of gas.

No enough Sam. Marc Maron was born to play Sam. Wonder if his absence was due to production on his movie.

The checklist nudity and sex seemed like a desperate ploy for viewers.

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On 8/28/2019 at 8:31 AM, benteen said:

Ruth really made a foolish mistake by turning down the directing gig.  She was right to point out this was Debbie's dream and not hers and it was dropped on her very quickly.  But the benefits of being the director of GLOW would have a lot of benefits for her.  Legit directing experience, a well-paying job where she wouldn't have to worry about money, the chance to make contacts in the business through the network and a chance to be involved in other projects on said network.  No one says she has to remain the director of GLOW the rest of her life and she could still go out on auditions.  A lot of directors in real life continued to pursue acting roles (Sydney Pollack, Garry Marshall, John Houston come to mind).

Other than being a steady paying job, would their really be that many benefits to being the director of nu-Glow? Even if Ruth wants to be a director, I can imagine that a lot of people would see pro-wrestling as something different and not a legitimate path to being a tv or movie director?  I mean have any well known directors got their start im the wrestling world? Even acting I would be curious to see if Glow is of any benefit to Ruth or if it hurts her career.

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17 hours ago, Kel Varnsen said:

Other than being a steady paying job, would their really be that many benefits to being the director of nu-Glow? Even if Ruth wants to be a director, I can imagine that a lot of people would see pro-wrestling as something different and not a legitimate path to being a tv or movie director?  I mean have any well known directors got their start im the wrestling world? Even acting I would be curious to see if Glow is of any benefit to Ruth or if it hurts her career.

Debbie said she could direct and create new characters. I would guess on top of that she'd be able to write for the show. Yes, it's a steady job and she can work on show biz skills. Directors got their start in commercials. I don't see it as anything different. What's her alternatives? Currently, she can't land a part in a movie where she knows the director and the writer. Doors aren't opening right now.

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6 hours ago, DoctorAtomic said:

Debbie said she could direct and create new characters. I would guess on top of that she'd be able to write for the show. Yes, it's a steady job and she can work on show biz skills. Directors got their start in commercials. I don't see it as anything different. What's her alternatives? Currently, she can't land a part in a movie where she knows the director and the writer. Doors aren't opening right now.

I can easily see that a lot of producers and other people who hire directors wouldn't consider directing wrestling as any kind of art or any kind of legitimate way to build skills. Instead they would probably see it as carny sideshow shit not worth h their time. I mean look how hard Dwane Johnson had to work to get past that and be considered a real movie star. And that was with all his talent, charisma, looks and a huge pre-existing fanbase.

As far as  possible season  4 I kind of hope the tv deal doesn't go off the way Debbie described. Because Debbie works well interacting with the other characters, and hilariously as Liberty Belle. Not sure how it works with her in her office as president of a tv station. Unless they do it   Newsradio/Jimmy James style where one of the main jokes is how she spends a hugly disproportionate time managing one small part of a giant corporation she is supposed to be running.

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37 minutes ago, DoctorAtomic said:

She can't be Liberty Belle again because they don't own those characters.

Yes, since she's planning to broadcast the wrestling matches, none of the characters will be usable in their current form - as the terms were specific that they couldn't perform those characters on tv - just for live audiences. (weird and somewhat unbelievable terms, imo, but that's what's been established).

15 hours ago, Kel Varnsen said:

As far as  possible season  4 I kind of hope the tv deal doesn't go off the way Debbie described. Because Debbie works well interacting with the other characters, and hilariously as Liberty Belle. Not sure how it works with her in her office as president of a tv station. Unless they do it   Newsradio/Jimmy James style where one of the main jokes is how she spends a hugly disproportionate time managing one small part of a giant corporation she is supposed to be running.

I agree that it would be a shame if Debbie only interacts with the others as management, and no longer as a performer. Mostly because she's so fun as a performer. But if they're telling a story where the characters evolve, I think they'll come up with an interesting way to have Debbie grow as a business woman - and learn to be a manager. The others learning to relate to her as a manager has it's own hiccups and dramas that could be interesting. If Ruth returns as a director, then that too will involve some readjusting of the relationships.

I mean, I think there's a clear message of female empowerment brewing in this series - sometimes as subtext, sometimes not. Each woman is in a different place on the journey. Almost all of the characters have grown (or changed) significantly during these three seasons, which to me is the hallmark of a good series. And, for me anyway, the growth has always been interesting and fun, so I'm fairly confident they'll continue to do so, even if Debbie doesn't perform anymore.

Edited by Clanstarling
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2 hours ago, Clanstarling said:

Yes, since she's planning to broadcast the wrestling matches, none of the characters will be usable in their current form - as the terms were specific that they couldn't perform those characters on tv - just for live audiences. (weird and somewhat unbelievable terms, imo, but that's what's been established).

In season 1 Bash had said that none of the actors own the characters so they can't go off and do anything else with them, so it's been consistent. The point is though Debbie is offering Ruth a chance to start from scratch and do what she (Ruth) wants.

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10 minutes ago, DoctorAtomic said:

In season 1 Bash had said that none of the actors own the characters so they can't go off and do anything else with them, so it's been consistent. The point is though Debbie is offering Ruth a chance to start from scratch and do what she (Ruth) wants.

I'm a little confused. I was agreeing with you on your comment about character ownership. I didn't comment at all on what Debbie was offering Ruth - though I certainly agree with you that Debbie is offering Ruth a chance to start from scratch.

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1 hour ago, DoctorAtomic said:

I was clarifying where I think the show first addressed the character copyrights.

That was for the actors being able to use the characters outside GLOW. Clanstarling is also correct that, at the end of season 2, Bash was told that he couldn't sell GLOW to another TV station b/c the one they were on owned only TV rights to them (remember he and Debbie were going to various expos trying to sell the show) but it seems that was all the contract covered. That's why they can use the characters in a live show, but not one that is broadcast. I happen to agree that it is weird that they could do a live show w/ the same characters. I would have expected any contract w/ the TV station to have provided the station w/ all ownership rights to the characters, not just on a tv show.

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On 9/2/2019 at 8:24 PM, DoctorAtomic said:

If they do a S4, they can basically soft reset and start completely over.

Ann no more Fortune Cookie, Welfare Queen or Beirut!

Edited by ItCouldBeWorse
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On 9/1/2019 at 3:47 PM, DoctorAtomic said:

Debbie said she could direct and create new characters. I would guess on top of that she'd be able to write for the show. Yes, it's a steady job and she can work on show biz skills. Directors got their start in commercials. I don't see it as anything different. What's her alternatives? Currently, she can't land a part in a movie where she knows the director and the writer. Doors aren't opening right now.

Right.  It's a steady paycheck for her, a chance to develop a new skill, a chance to meet new contacts, a chance to create.  All of which can help her if she continues to pursue acting jobs.

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On 9/2/2019 at 1:20 PM, Clanstarling said:

Yes, since she's planning to broadcast the wrestling matches, none of the characters will be usable in their current form - as the terms were specific that they couldn't perform those characters on tv - just for live audiences. (weird and somewhat unbelievable terms, imo, but that's what's been established).

I don't know, it seems like like a show about the ups and downs of running a tv station could easily take over the show. Because unless not-Glow is the only thing they have, then wrestling would only be a small part of the business. And a show about running a tv station doesn't sound as interesting as a show about the wrestling business.

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7 minutes ago, Kel Varnsen said:

I don't know, it seems like like a show about the ups and downs of running a tv station could easily take over the show. Because unless not-Glow is the only thing they have, then wrestling would only be a small part of the business. And a show about running a tv station doesn't sound as interesting as a show about the wrestling business.

True enough. It is a concern. But I'm willing to believe that they'll manage an entertaining/interesting show. The Las Vegas change up was decent - not quite as charming, granted, but pretty good. And if they're developing new characters, and Ruth's directing, it could just come full circle. That's my hope, anyway.

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On 9/3/2019 at 1:21 PM, benteen said:

Right.  It's a steady paycheck for her, a chance to develop a new skill, a chance to meet new contacts, a chance to create.  All of which can help her if she continues to pursue acting jobs.

Also since it is still the 80's the other thing working against Ruth if she took the job would be that at the time promotions and a lot of fans were still clinging to kayfabe,  the idea that pro-wrestling was a legitimate sporting event. So it could be hard to sell herself as a writer/director if a lot of people think the events just sort if play out on their own. At best they might think of her as the equivalent of someone who directs the filming of a boxing match.

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I see Debbie attended the Mr. Darcy School of Proposals.  Geez.  Was she expecting a yes?

Then she didn't even buy her Secret Santa a gift.  

I fucking hate Debbie.

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12 hours ago, larapu2000 said:

I see Debbie attended the Mr. Darcy School of Proposals.  Geez.  Was she expecting a yes?

Then she didn't even buy her Secret Santa a gift.  

I fucking hate Debbie.

The makers of the show should thank their lucky stars that they landed such a charismatic actress to play Debbie. Without Betty Gilpin in the role, I don't think the audience would be able to stand her.

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6 hours ago, Blakeston said:

The makers of the show should thank their lucky stars that they landed such a charismatic actress to play Debbie. Without Betty Gilpin in the role, I don't think the audience would be able to stand her.

You're right about that. I still have trouble liking her, but Betty has brought enough to the role for me to feel her good intentions some - not all - of the time.

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On 8/10/2019 at 12:16 AM, Lady Calypso said:

My biggest issue is with how little GLOW actually was shown in this season.

Same here. This third season felt two-thirds less fun and had two-thirds less wrestling.  I can see that most of the cast might not be willing or able to do the stunts - but maybe they could hire a few athletic actors (they do exist). 

The only dog-piles this season were the abundance of Issues with a capital 'I'. Season one was able to strike a better balance of realism and entertainment. Sam's ignorant sexism was appalling yet also amusing since he wasn't a total asshole. This season had bulimia, the holocaust , the killing fields, homophobia, motherhood vs career,  hate crimes and more. 

Bash and Rhonda have a mutually beneficial partnership (she originally planned to marry a complete stranger). I hope they will eventually work things out and become friends. Was Bash's hair supposed to be a metaphor for how out of control his personal life was becoming? It ws pretty crazy by the end of the season. 

When Debbie offered Ruth the chance to direct, I expected Ruth to have an epiphany that writing and directing were her true calling.  Guess not. Since we only see snippets of their lives it was hard to tell, but it seemed as if Ruth really wasn't pursing acting during her stay in Vegas. At least Sheila, her roommate, was taking acting classes.  It sucks for Ruth, but you think she would have learned by now that Hollywood is a rigged game. 

And is Ruth supposed to be a bad actor, an unlucky actor, or a actor who chases the wrong parts? 

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I think the last two. I always thought of her as a H!ITG type actor. Which is totally fine. But you can still do other things. And of you're not getting work, writing and directing your own roles has some values. 

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I really enjoyed the season and I think the lovely Christmas bow on the end had a lot to do with it.

Betty Gilpin certainly had a great season.  Although I do worry about the backlash if her scheme is uncovered before she and Bash can complete the deal.  It will be particularly bad if Sandy and Tex join forces against them.

I find it ironic that Ruth had a much lower profile this season, whilst Alison Brie picked up her first directing credit.

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And all of a sudden Tex is a condescending jerk? That didn't ring any truer than him being completely comfortable surrounded by gay men.

The Christmas Carol idea was fun. Zoya as Scrooge was a no-brainer and actually combining it with wrestling was cool. This is an idea that real pro-wrestling companies should think about - actually telling classic stories, but with added wrestling.

And yay, Keith is back! Now that's a Christmas present we can all enjoy. He and Cherry have the best relationship on this show.

The second best relationship is Sam and Justine. I really enjoy their scenes together, with Justine so clearly needing that parental connection, and Sam actually wanting to give it.

Looks like neither Rhonda nor Bash are handling the fact he's gay very well. He's struggling against all the expectations on his shoulders, and has decided to push himself so far back into the closet that he's about to meet a talking lion. And poor Debbie has to play mother to him, in more ways that one.

A very downbeat, melancholy end to the season, with fragmented, unfinished goodbyes and the unspoken dissolution of the group. And Ruth is an idiot. That's all.

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On 8/12/2019 at 2:25 AM, thuganomics85 said:

Carmen thinking up of a wrestling version of A Christmas Carol was the best.  As was her performance in the ring, which was really giving off some old-school Undertaker vibes.  I don't blame her for wanting to have a go at non-Vegas pro-wrestling, but I wish she heard out Debbie's offer.

I heart Carmen.  The rest of the season was ok. 

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Ruth continues to be an insufferable brat, but at least they dropped the Ruth/Debbie feud finally. I feel like both Arthie and Bash's storyline suffered from TV's inability to acknowledge bisexuality. Bash has devolved into a real callous, unlikable douchebag - a far cry from the dude who kissed Carmen so that she could stay with the group.

Mark Maron has never been sexy to me until he kissed Alison Brie...like that. And I don't even really like Sam/Ruth as a couple.

So we really just dropped Debbie's bulimia and live-in toddler and Sam's heart attack? Great continuity, writers.

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This is a weird problem to suddenly introduce with Tex. Slightly patronizing? Sure. But he also has a fair point. If she's concerned he's underbidding then she probably won't like the ruthless way he sometimes does business. See: Pretty Woman's explanation of corporate takeovers to sell companies for parts.

LOVED Geena Davis' poinsettia sequin top. So pretty.

It seems a little neat but whatever. Sure, Debbie has an amazing head for business and will extract Bash from all his Vegas commitments.

Yay, Keith is back! I don't know if they're great candidates for adoption but whatever. I can excuse it since it's a good compromise. Cherry was worried about working and her body. And she had complicated feelings after the miscarriage. It seems like they both want a family though. (I swear to God, GLOW, if you introduce that Cherry doesn't like children and break them up again, I will riot.)

It's easy to be mad at Bash for pulling his money from Rhapsody but the show was already losing money. There wasn't audience interest. Getting an angel investor to keep a dying show afloat isn't something you're entitled to. 

As much as I'm not invested in Ruth and Sam is how much I'm invested in Justine and Sam. 

When this show is over, I'm going to miss Melrose's outfits.

Debbie looked great at the end of the episode. Very Murphy Brown.

I'm sure there will be discord in this "Eden" but I'm excited for this plan for season 4. Unless the real actors got other jobs, Ruth and Carmen will be back.

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I don't doubt that there is some truth in what he says (he wants to be with her and have a family) but it's mostly due to not wanting to admit that he's gay/bi.

My read was that it might also be the only way he can conceive of having a family. He certainly couldn't be married to a man. Not sure about adoption for gay men/couples in the 80's.

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Although I was glad to see Keith again, it reminded me that we never got a resolution to Cherry's $5K gambling debt. Did she make it all back mud wrestling with Carmen?

I don't know if it was just the one time (that's a wild amount of prize money) but yeah, Cherry did say something in the drag ball episode about feeling free of her gambling debt. This season has been weird about introducing heavy topics like Cherry's gambling addiction and Tamme's substance abuse to deal with her pain and then dropping them super easily.

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LOVED that Sam supported Justine, I was expecting him to backstab her.

I kept expecting his screenplay to come back but it seems he's recognized that hers is better and is fully putting his aside. Maybe he should stop trying to do autobiographical material. First Mothers and Lovers, now Paterfamilias.

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So Ruth wants so desperatly to be an actress that she doesn't take a sweet directing gig, something she has shown she is talented in and that she had fun doing? I guess some people just don't want to be happy... I mean she ccould probably still go on auditions, if she really wanted to.

I feel like in the context of this show we as the audience were supposed to understand that it was all or nothing. To Ruth, she saw the directing she was doing on the TV show as just for fun or to step in and keep this show going where she gets to act in some way. But she's no longer as desperate. She doesn't want to just kind of act as Zoya. She wants to be recognized as an actress. And here is Debbie framing it as an off ramp where Ruth will never again go in for an audition and maybe this time be chosen (insert reference to La La Land here). In the context of this show, Debbie is asking her to give up on that dream. I will note that even if you're doing Chekhov or All About Eve or whatever, being a stage actress means doing the same thing night after night, hopefully for months, possibly for a year or more. I'm not confident that Ruth wouldn't get bored of that the way she got bored of doing Glow. Basically, I feel like we've gotten away from season 1 Ruth who just wanted to act. I think she wants different things now even if she fully hasn't admitted it to herself. Validation, stardom, I don't know. But she's not the same as in season 1. 

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She couldn't even get a part in a movie where she was very good friends with the director and writer. 

Debbie also was offering a position that not only was she actually good at but would have enormous creative freedom. Any actor will tell you that a steady gig is a steady gig. 

I think she needs time to let it sink in. 

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On 9/10/2019 at 3:16 AM, Blakeston said:

The makers of the show should thank their lucky stars that they landed such a charismatic actress to play Debbie. Without Betty Gilpin in the role, I don't think the audience would be able to stand her.

She is very good in what could have been a thankless role. The weird thing is I absolutely hated the actress on Nurse Jackie.

On 11/27/2019 at 10:18 AM, DoctorAtomic said:

She couldn't even get a part in a movie where she was very good friends with the director and writer. 

Debbie also was offering a position that not only was she actually good at but would have enormous creative freedom. Any actor will tell you that a steady gig is a steady gig. 

I think she needs time to let it sink in. 

I guess it begs the classic question about when is holding on to a dream no longer noble but delusional? I am guessing that Ruth is actually a solid actress, but there a zillion solid classically trained actresses that never get a chance. Hollywood is extremely ageist against women and it was even worse back then. She has probably aged out of the roles she desires and it would be smart for her to look at other avenues. 

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The thing is, she would be making the show in LA anyway. She can still go do auditions. I mean it's better than waiting tables right? And directing the show is a great resume builder. 

I'm having a hard time grasping her all or nothing attitude. We never really got to much insight into her motivations because when she directed the title sequence she looked happy about it and Sam complimented her. It wasn't like she did it because she had to. 

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I don't think the show did want it to come off that way, but I really didn't like Arthie being bullied into saying that she's gay. I mean so what if she doesn't know or if she's Bi? What business is that of anybody else, even her girlfriend. She said she loved her and wanted to be with her. That should be enough, shouldn't it? That's some bullshit.

I think this storyline really shows a sign of the times. These day, we have many examples of people whose sexuality is fluid. People have loving relationships with both men and women, or at least are open to the possibility.

In the 80s, people who had a relationship with someone of the same sex were automatically considered gay. I think Arthie feels pressure to label herself but has trouble because she's not sure if she simply loves Yolanda or if she is attracted to women in general. I question Arthie's declaration in this episode that she truly is gay. It seems to have more to do with losing Yolanda and being angry about the fire than it does about being attracted to only women.

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On 12/10/2019 at 12:42 PM, Jsage said:

I think this storyline really shows a sign of the times. These day, we have many examples of people whose sexuality is fluid. People have loving relationships with both men and women, or at least are open to the possibility.

In the 80s, people who had a relationship with someone of the same sex were automatically considered gay. I think Arthie feels pressure to label herself but has trouble because she's not sure if she simply loves Yolanda or if she is attracted to women in general. I question Arthie's declaration in this episode that she truly is gay. It seems to have more to do with losing Yolanda and being angry about the fire than it does about being attracted to only women.

There was a joke about a guy who identified as gay in the eighties. He would have men come up to him and say "You know you're gay, right" and he would have women come up to him and say "You know you're gay, right".

In the eighties sexuality was much more rigid due to homophobia. A lot of people though saying "Bi" was a total cop out.

So I guess it was appropriate for the times, but luckily people have a little more freedom in 2019.

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She has probably aged out of the roles she desires and it would be smart for her to look at other avenues. 

You'd think 3 seasons in, I'd be able to say for sure what Ruth wants but I don't really know. She seems to want to act and consider any acting work to be valuable. But she also got bored during the long run (though a year-long contract is pretty average for a successful Broadway show). My best guess of the kind of roles she wants to play are Hedda Gabbler and like a female version of Hamlet. For a theater actress she hasn't aged out of those kinds of parts yet. But she doesn't have the pedigree or popularity (to put butts in seats) that would warrant getting cast in those kinds of parts. 

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