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Old 06-14-2001, 03:13 PM
don willard don willard is offline
Join Date: Aug 2000
I had been confused about the ritzy lady motif on old radio, which we don't seem to have anymore, between Mrs. Buff-Orpington and Mrs. Uppington. Now I have them straight since I saw a letter and reply in NOSTALGIA DIGEST, June/
July, 2001. I remember wondering about this when I heard the ritzy lady on a FIBBER MCGEE AND MOLLY rebroadcast referred to as Mrs. Uppington, also called "Uppy" by Fibber. I said to myself at the time, "I thought her name was Mrs. Buff-Orpington!" Well here's how it goes: Mrs. Buff-Orpington was on the DAGWOOD AND BLONDIE comedy show as the ritzy lady. Uppy Uppington was the one on FIBBER.
One theory as to why this was confusing is that it was because both ladies were played by the same actress: Isabel Randolph, who played the type in other shows as well. When she would arrive at the Bumsteads, you could hear her car driving up with a comic sound, as it says in ND. One wonders why there are no ritzy ladies anymore who pretend to have class. Probably because nobody has class and nobody even wants to appear as if he or she did!
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Old 06-14-2001, 03:53 PM
Eve Eve is offline
Join Date: Dec 1999
Ah, an addendum to my Margaret Dumont thread. How I long to be a Society Dowager someday!

I shall waft off to sleep tonight with visions of Mrs. Drysdale . . . Louise Closser Hale . . . Alice Brady . . . Cora Witherspoon . . . Edna Mae Oliver . . .
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Old 06-14-2001, 04:18 PM
DAVEW0071 DAVEW0071 is offline
Join Date: Mar 1999
Don't forget Dame Mae Whitty.

(Which calls to mind a terrible pun.

Was Dame Mae Whitty?

Yes, but most people consider John Greenleaf Whittier.)
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Old 06-14-2001, 05:37 PM
don willard don willard is offline
Join Date: Aug 2000
And Another One:

Don't forget Samantha's mother-in-law on BEWITCHED, a modern snob. Of course we must categorize within the category of society dowagers: Margaret Dumont and I think Edna Mae Oliver and Dame Mae Whitty, Mrs. Uppington, and Mrs. Buff-Orpington were basically goodhearted dowagers, whereas Mrs. Stevens and Mrs. Drysdale (especially her) were not. Also, weren't there dowager duchesses in English lore?
We must never forget Phoebe on ALL MY CHILDREN, I forget the actress' name but she played the unhappy wife of Citizen Kane way back. There was an actress who played the rich lady who hired the girl who was to become the replacement for Rebecca in Daphne du Maurier's REBECCA. The rich lady hires her to be her companion, but then she meets the wealthy owner of Manderley and they go off there for further adventures. At one point the dowager reaches out and cries, "I MUST have a chocolate!" She played other dowagers too.
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Old 06-15-2001, 08:39 AM
Eve Eve is offline
Join Date: Dec 1999
Of course, there are different classifications of Dowagers:

Margaret Dumont (the Queen of All the Dowagers)
Mrs. Drysdale (played by Harriett McGibbon)
Louise Closser Hale

Billie Burke
Aunt Clara (the great Marion Lorne)
Alice Brady
Cora Witherspoon ("the poor man's Alice Brady")

Endora (Agnes Moorehead)
Ina Claire (in "Ninotchka")
Constance Bennett (in "Madame X")

I was raised in a bevy of dowagers: my grandmother and her six sisters were classic examples, ranging in personality from "imperious" to "dithering."
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Old 06-16-2001, 01:28 AM
Rilchiam Rilchiam is offline
Join Date: Mar 1999
Re: And Another One:

Originally posted by don willard
We must never forget Phoebe on ALL MY CHILDREN, I forget the actress' name but she played the unhappy wife of Citizen Kane way back.
Ruth Warrick.
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Old 06-16-2001, 01:55 AM
mblackwell mblackwell is offline
Join Date: Jun 2000
What about the mother of the rich kid on The Many Loves of Dobie Gillis. With the wall with the broken glass embedded in the top. Mrs. Chatsworth or something like that, I haven't seen the show since I was about 10 and it was on Nick at Night.
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