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Beacon Senior News

What “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel” says about reinventing yourself

Apr 01, 2022 02:20PM ● By Cloie Sandlin

I just finished bingeing the TV series, “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel,” which tells the story of Miriam “Midge” Maisel, a beautiful and brilliant young Jewish housewife who launches her stand-up comedy career in the ’50s and ’60s. I first started watching the series on Amazon Prime Video when it came out in 2017, but with two years between seasons (no doubt due to the pandemic), I had a hard time remembering the events of the show’s previous seasons and decided to start over.  

While the show begins with Midge (played by 31-year-old Rachel Brosnahan) living the life she always wanted—young and beautiful, happily married and seemingly well-off with two kids—it quickly falls apart when her husband leaves her for another woman. The show provides an amazing arch for women’s rights and feminism, not just with Midge and her newfangled career as a female comic, but also her manager, Susie, and her mother, Rose.

The thing I most admire about the show is the writing—not just the jokes—but the snappy dialogue between Midge and her parents (Tony Shalhoub and Marin Hinkle). 

Throughout the show, Abe and Rose’s journey develops alongside Midge’s as their comfortable, happy lives are turned upside down as a result of their daughter’s new marital status and career choice—or so they believe. As the show goes on, both Abe and Rose’s preconceived notions about marriage, happiness and their own futures take a turn as Abe leaves his long-held job as a mathematics professor at Columbia University and then his dream job at Bell Labs, and Rose subsequently leaves her family to go to France, returns to continue her education by taking art classes at Columbia, and then starts a new career of her own. 

Midge’s character is still young. Some people today might say she has “plenty of time” to figure her life out (although I’m not sure how many people in the ’60s actually said that). But for people like Abe and Rose, the idea of reinventing themselves may seem a little more daunting.

“I think he feels like a fairly successful guy who’s got most of it figured out, and then comes to realize he really has nothing figured out at all,” Shalhoub said about his character in a Vanity Fair interview.

I think this might be true for more people than we realize. 

I’m jumping the gun here, but I wanted to write this column before I forgot the events from the show that led to it. Make sure to pick up next month’s BEACON to read the stories of local people who reinvented themselves after 50, reminding us that age is only a number. 

See you at grand junction BeaconFest on April 28!

With more than 100 exhibitors, prizes, live entertainment, freebies and food—it’s no wonder BeaconFest is the largest boomer and senior fair in the area. Actually, as we know it, it’s the biggest in Colorado. 

BeaconFest is free for BEACON readers. It’s our way of saying thank you!

Come see us at Grand Junction Convention Center from 9 a.m.-3 p.m. on Thursday, April 28 as we celebrate everything that’s great about getting older.

Our Mesa County readers can see the enclosed BeaconFest show program for details, or they can visit www.BeaconFest.BeaconSeniorNews.com.