Girlboss Resort Has A Problem With Miranda Priestly
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There is a point in the first season of Hacks where Deborah Vance, the jaded actress, who has seen it all, with more money than God (or at least, Celine Dion), tells Ava, the young ingenuous in her service, “Good is the minimum. baseline. And even though you’re awesome, you still have to work really hard. You have to scratch and scratch and it never fucking ends. And it doesn’t get better, it just gets harder. “
This is, in a sense, Deborah’s mission statement – it is Deborah explaining why she is the way she is, hardened to the world and (initially) reluctant to change – and it is reminiscent of a similar scene in Hacks’ ancestor, The devil wears Prada, the highly regarded film about another thorny woman in her fifties in power. In the devil wears Prada, Andie (Anne Hathaway) surprises her boss, Miranda Priestly (Meryl Streep), in a rare moment of vulnerability, at which point she reveals that maybe, just maybe, far beneath that icy exterior lies a true heart that bat. “The Dragon Lady. Obsessed with her career. The Snow Queen is hunting another Mr. Priestly,” said Miranda, piercing a hole in the myth that envelops her.
If it’s like Hacks has a dynamic that we have already seen – this is because we have, of course, not only in the devil wears Prada, but in other movies like The high note, late at night, Cruel, and going back to All about Eve.
In Hacks and the devil wears Prada, Miranda and Deborah – the latter played with a rich emotional texture by Jean Smart – face threats to their empire. Miranda is set to be ousted for a younger, more French version of herself, and Deborah is set to lose her coveted headlining spot at the Palmetto Casino in Vegas. Due to their age, both women look up and down; However, Hacks takes care to clarify that at least part of Deborah’s loss is of her own volition. Miranda, on the other hand, is still the best at what she does and has next to nothing to gain from Andie other than her loyalty and creative problem-solving skills.
Here is where Hacks Deviates from Predecessor: Deborah agrees to try Ava’s narrative approach to comedy in order to brush up on her number, and so Ava (Hannah Einbinder) has something to teach Deborah. Because their relationship is a two-way street (albeit one-sided, but still), we see a side of Deborah that we don’t see of Miranda. The two elders first of all dispensed the young women from severe treatment and impossible tasks; for them, it is preparation for a career in a world where, because they are women, they are ultimately superfluous and replaceable. As the credits roll by the devil wears Prada, with Miranda’s smile and laughter after spotting Andie on the street, audiences get the impression that Miranda is happy that Andie has learned to stand up for herself, but not necessarily that Miranda herself has learned something from there. ‘experience. Another girl takes Andie’s office and life in Miranda’s world goes on without interruption.
And it is perhaps because we understand the sacrifices made by Miranda and Deborah to get there, how rare it is still to see women reach this level of success, that we cannot help but be charmed by these characters, even if their behavior is inappropriate. Perhaps the greatest proof of this is that the “movie villain vs. the actual villain” meme that cyclically floats the internet, postulating that Miranda isn’t actually the villain of the movie. The devil dresses Prada, but rather Andie Nate’s boyfriend (Adrian Grenier) is for keeping her from a fabulous career. Deborah also elicited a similar admiration.
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Because Hacks takes place over the course of 10 episodes – with more in the works – there are, of course, more opportunities to delve deeper into what made Deborah, as the creators say, “Martha Stewart Meets Tony Soprano”. It’s not just the big things that have hardened Deborah over time – the betrayal of her ex-husband, missing out on a late-night accommodation gig – but it’s the micro-assaults. misogynists who do it too, which are all too common when a woman exercises or tries to gain power, as the Hacks episode “1.69 million.” Ava criticizes Deborah for not doing more for the women who have followed in her footsteps; Deborah retorts that her success in itself should be enough for those who come after, a common argument between feminists of today and feminists of yesteryear. Deborah then makes a payment to stay out of comedy forever, helping to ensure that at least one club is a safer space. In retrospect, it seems likely that Miranda suffered similar injustices – but as the devil wears Prada predated the #MeToo movement by a decade, it’s only more evident now, knowing what we know about all of the male-dominated industries.
Like Miranda, Deborah forces her young employee to jump through hoops, and her abuse of Ava can be horrendous at times (especially considering the toxicity in comedy that continues to plague today), but it’s the eventual softening of Deborah, trying this different routine and finally the promotion of her most dedicated employee, who differentiates Hacks of The devil wears Prada.The mentor-ingenuous is a rich subject to explore, and one which does not seem to fade from our lexicon of pop culture. As we tell new stories about women in positions of power, they should reflect various experiences of female leadership; studies that show women make better bosses, but there are still too few of them. And let’s go ahead and throw Jean Smart in all of these movies and shows as well.