*Warning: This post contains spoilers about the characters from the television series Will & Grace. Read at your own risk if you have not watched either the previous series or the new series.
There is something to be said about a well written, human character. They leap off the page and speak to us as if they were right in front us, as flesh and blood human beings, instead of fictional creations.
In this series of weekly blog posts, I will examine character using the characters from Will & Grace to explore how writers can create fully dimensional, human characters that audiences and readers can relate to.
Many times, when a maid or a servant (especially a maid or a servant of color) is portrayed, they are subservient and quietly going along with the instructions of their employer. They also sometimes portrayed as unintelligent or too close to the stereotype. But Rosario Salazar (Shelly Morrison) is different. She is Karen Walker’s (Megan Mullally) maid and Jack McFarland’s (Sean Hayes) ex-wife. The best thing about Rosario is that whatever Karen dishes out, she can give it back ten fold.
But, the relationship between Karen and Rosario is completely adversarial. There is an underlying symbiotic relationship/friendship that balances out the moments when Karen and Rosario are in each other’s faces. When Rosario died in the first season of the reboot, it was a heartbreaking loss that was palpable to anyone who was watching.
To sum it up: When a writer takes a stereotype and knocks it on the head, it’s a challenge. It’s a challenge not just for the writer to go beyond the stereotype, but the reader or the audience member to shift their expectations of the character. In a sense, Rosario was the typical maid of color who works for a Caucasian woman. But, she was not subservient, could give it as much as she took and it, and in the end had a deep emotional connection with her employer. That is why Rosario Salazar is beloved by the fans of Will & Grace.
No one goes through life without having a few secrets in their proverbial closet. The problem with this closet is that when one becomes President, the hope is that he or she is honest about their secrets.
You know who has decided to keep his secrets in his own proverbial closet. But somehow, these secrets are finding their way out.
The new book, House of Trump, House of Putin: The Untold Story of Donald Trump and the Russian Mafia, written by Craig Unger describes in chilling detail about the connection between you know who and the powers that be in Russia. The book starts in the 1970’s when you know who was then an up and coming real estate magnate and ends with the present day. In the book, Mr. Unger makes it clear that Vladimir Putin not only has fond memories of Soviet era Russia, but also has a network of oligarchs and mafia types that keep him in power. He also draws the connection over time between you know who, his Russian connections and how both led us to our current political state.
If anyone has doubts that Russia has a puppet in the White House, this book wipes away those doubts. By the time I finished this book, I was both angry and agitated to act. I was angry because a foreign government whose leader prefers to rule using a totalitarian style has a hand in how American is being governed. I was agitated to act because I feel the urgency to get you know who out of office before he does any more damage to this country.
I completely recommend it.
When an overall societal change is required, the first step is the opening of minds.
In 2009, Pit Bulls and Parolees premiered on Animal Planet. The focus of the show is the Villalobos Rescue Center. The owner of the shelter, Tia Torres employs those who are newly released from jail and shelters Pit Bulls until they can be adopted into loving and hopefully forever homes. The focus of every episode is two potential adopters and the dogs they will be bringing into their home. Some of the episodes also tell the story of the dogs that have been rescued and nursed back to health.
This show can break your heart and heal it in one 60 minute episode. It’s heart breaking when a dog is found abused, starving or left to fend for themselves. It’s also heartwarming to watch the dogs adopted and hoping that their owners will love them as much as the audience wants them to. I’m not a pet person, but this show makes me feel warm and fuzzy toward our four-legged friends.
I recommend it.