Applause goes out to Foxy and Fagat for getting me all worked up over Designing Women this morning. Designing Women is easily one of my top five favorite situation comedies of all time. The interesting thing about this revelation is that my love for the show didn’t happen as a teenager (although I watched every episode every week from 1986 to 1993), but rather as an adult, viewing the show through the eyes of an old Southern gal, a designing woman myself.
Fourteen Things Gayest Neil Loves about Designing Women
(maybe more if I feel so inspired):
1) Julia's righteous monologues, given.
2) The non-threatening black man antics of Meshach Taylor. I love you Hollywood Montrose! For the longest I thought he and Ernie Hudson from Ghostbusters were the same person.
3) Annie Potts (also from Ghostbusters) seemed so much more put together than anyone a Sugerbakers. I also kept hope alive her character would come out as a lesbo.
4) Oh poor, rattled Bernice. She was a scene stealer until she got a job at the design firm (this was during the dark B.J. Poteet and Allison Sugarbaker years, 91-93)
5) Jean Smart. She’s the best thing about 24 right now. My favorite Charlene line “[Julia] said she was going to hunt me down like a dog and hire blood hounds to rip my clothes off!”
6) The baby wig! The baby wig! THE BABY WIG!
7) Georgia. I loved that the show was set in my home state. It was a pretty accurate portrayal too. If you were a woman interior designer living in a mansion in the whitest part of Atlanta.
8) The tackiness of it all. Baubles, chandeliers, overstuffed pillows. The production design was so overblown. Love it. I’m installing a lanai so I can fill it up with Southern Victorian trashy furniture from Pier One and sip mint juleps while Ray Charles sings and enjoy my life of leisure all in gauzy soft focus.
9) OK… I’ll be one of a million when I say I loved Suzanne. Like Julia’s rants, everyone loves Suzanne’s wackiness, but what is there not to like? Suzanne Sugarbaker was the gay teen’s Karen before “Will and Grace” was. And kudos to Foxy. W&G is sooo played out. It feels older than “Designing Women”. Loved her pig, Suzanne’s not Foxy’s.
10) The AIDS episode where Julia’s HIV positive son arrives with a request for Sugarbakers to plan his funeral and dies like two days later. I’ve seen this episode several times and I come out of it with a different opinion after each viewing.
11) Was BJ Poteet a lesbo? I was always kind of frightened by her. She reminded me vaguely of my father’s girlfriend/mistress at the time.
12) Carlene, eh… ok. Of the three replacements, weird BJ Poteet, the reviled Allison Sugerbaker and kooky Carlene. I admit I liked Carlene the most. More so to the talent of SNL’s Jan Hooks than any inspired character development of Carlene herself. Ditzy country gal, check. Moving on.
13) The episode where the Designing Women have to beat up a bully biker who is menacing Anthony in his apartment’s laundry room. The best thing about that episode is the biker’s skanky girlfriend who’s suckin on a Zima. I love trashy girlfriends. I want to be a trashy, biker girlfriend when I grow up!
14) The episode where the Designing Women have to go undercover as white supremacists to rescue Anthony from the Klan. That Anthony was always getting into trouble.