#RyanMurphy has done something amazing with his career. He has brought actresses back into roles where they are able to be recognized for their incredible acting skills. #KathyBates, for example, is no ordinary actress, I believe she is one of the best ever and she proves it with any material that comes her way. #Feud showcases how stars, as they get older, well before our time period, were pushed aside because of #Hollywood expectations with keeping things 'new' and 'young.'
Feud: Bette and Joan
The first season of Feud focused on a rivalry between two of Hollywood's best, Joan Crawford and Bette Davis. The two came together to work on a #spectacular and semi-#horrific film, What Ever Happened to Baby Jane? (1962) Joan brought it to Bette's attention, despite the two not getting along due to a man, Franchot Tone. Bette was Tone's costar in a film Dangerous (1935), but Joan stole seduced him away and married him. At the time, Joan was the bigger star, but Bette's exceptional talent eventually overthrew Joan from the acting spotlight.
When Joan pitched Bette the idea of Baby Jane, both of them were out of work for a while, having both aged and leaving Warner, they were no longer desired. Despite Bette constantly telling Joan to piss off, she ended up agreeing on the role. Joan allowed Bette to have the lead, but then increasingly grew jealous of Bette's commitment to the role and impressive acting skills. The jealously only fueled a better performance from both actresses.
Luckily for both, Baby Jane was a hit and brought a lot of attention to both Bette and Joan for more work. The problem after this was who was nominated for the Oscar. Only Bette was nominated and it crushed Joan that she wasn't nominated as well, so she did whatever she could to persuade voters in the Academy to not vote for Bette, simply because she was being petty. It worked and the situation ruined any chance for Bette and Joan to ever become friends.
Later Years for Bette and Joan
As the years went by, Bette and Joan were still offered roles, but less serious ones. Mainly for B-Movies, but Joan seem to be given still the lesser roles. Having had a difficult life all of her life and eventually out of the spotlight for good, Joan spiraled out of control with loneliness and drinking. She ended up suffering from stomach cancer. Bette, too, had become an alcoholic. Both women lost touch with some of their children and had books written about how horrible they were as mothers. It is possible the two would have been able to be friends at this point in their lifetime because they both had a lot in common, even if they didn't want to admit it.
However, Bette seemed to be the stronger personality of the two and kept living her days with intense drinking and smoking. Joan became sicker and more alone, having been forgotten and treated poorly by the Hollywood she thought she knew. She passed away from a heart attack in her New York apartment at the age of 71.
Feud only focuses in on Joan's death. I think because Bette surprisingly lived until 81, even though she didn't lead the healthiest lifestyle and Joan's is more devastating, given how she was basically completely dropped from the limelight. Bette seemed more strong willed than Joan, but still should've been treated better as well. You'd think that Hollywood would have shown more respect for these women, seeing as they brought a lot of success to the film industry and were incredibly talented.
In with the new and out with the old must have been the motto then and quite possibly still be now. The exception is Ryan Murphy's shows, which have brought back more lead roles for stars such as Jessica Lange, Susan Sarandan, Kathy Bates, Angela Bassett, and Jamie Lee Curtis.
I'm a fan of #classic films and basically anything before the 2000s, so I am beyond thankful for getting to watch shows with these women. They're talent worth watching and know how to entertain. I like that their talent is being mixed in with new talent because the younger generation can learn how to improve their acting because of them.
Feud: Bette and Joan Season One recently finished up April 23rd. Did you watch season one? Did you feel bad for Joan or Bette?
The miniseries will be returning for a Second Season, but with a completely different focus: Prince Charles and Princess Diana.