The Nanny Character Review: Maggie Sheffield

*For the foreseeable future, some Character Review posts may not be published every Thursday as they have in the past.

*Warning: This post contains spoilers about the characters from the television series The Nanny. Read at your own risk if you have not watched the show. 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 of us, as flesh and blood human beings, instead of fictional creations.

Let’s be honest, being a teenager is scary. Our hormones are raging, we are confused about everything, and we are trying to build the bridge from childhood to adulthood. On The Nanny, Maggie Sheffield, the oldest of the three Sheffield children, (Nicholle Tom) is initially introduced as a shy young woman in her early teens. Her first burst of change comes via her first kiss from a waiter who has been hired for an event at the Sheffield home. While her father, Maxwell Sheffield (Charles Shaughnessy) is horrified, her new nanny, Fran Fine (Fran Drescher) is thrilled.

As Maggie grows up, Fran becomes more like an older sister/confidant than a paid member of the household staff. While her father does everything he can to keep her from growing up, Fran encourages Maggie to enjoy her teenage years. She also gets quite a bit of brotherly ribbing from her younger brother Brighton (Benjamin Salisbury). When we last see Maggie, she is a newly married to a Jewish underwear novel.

To sum it up: What makes Maggie relatable as a character is that she is a normal teenage girl. She is watched like a hawk by her father, teased by her kid brother and encouraged to enjoy life by the maternal figure in her life.

Which is why she is a memorable character.


Flashback Friday: The Good Son (1993)

When one chooses to become an actor, they don’t choose (if they are able to make a decent living) to play the same type of character over and over again. Which is why the choice to play against type is exciting The question is, will this actor succeed in playing a role that the audience does not see coming?

In the 1993 film, The Good Son, Mark (Elijah Wood) has just lost his mother. When his father goes on a business trip to Asia, he is sent Maine to stay with his aunt and uncle. Mark spends his days with his cousin Henry (Macaulay Culkin). Henry initially seems like the average kid. Somewhere along the way, he starts to show a side of himself that is darker and scarier than Mark could have ever imagined.

Back in the day, the reviewers had mixed responses to the film. To be completely honest, I have not seen the movie in full. I just remember seeing part of it in the early 90’s and getting chills watching Culkin play this child who is far from Kevin McCallister as you can get.

Do I recommend it? Maybe.

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