Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Remembering MTM, Feminist Icon

By Steve Evans

A fond remembrance of Mary Tyler Moore, whose eponymous 1970s television show was an inestimable influence on feminism and advancing respect in this country for professional women. To the best of my knowledge, she was the first single career woman portrayed on television, working in a world of arrogant and often stupid men. One of the co-creators of her show, James L. Brooks, would go on to make Oscar-winning films, including Terms of Endearment, Broadcast News and As Good As it Gets, all featuring strong, progressive women characters.

But it was Mary who anchored the show that carried her name for eight years. She was capable and sensible, smart and at least as sweet as the charming theme song for the show. Even as a kid I felt vaguely protective of Mary -- that was part of her appeal -- but I knew then as now that she needed no help from me or any other man or boy. She made it, after all.

Mary Tyler Moore won 9 Emmys and was Oscar nominated. She also holds the distinction of appearing as the love interest in the last picture Elvis made, although I cannot in good conscience recommend Change of Habit (1969) as anything more than an odd curio of its time.

RIP Mary. Te adoro.

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