dreadedcandiru2 (dreadedcandiru2) wrote,

Family businesses and family politics.

Here's an interesting thing I'd noticed when I read Anthony and Weed's Liographies. The interesting thing is that Lynn and Beth clearly seem to be horrified by the notion of a character working for a family business. The same impulse that has her both pity Rhetta and be revolted by her because she's working for her father's law firm has her hold Therese out to be either evil or horribly misguided because she has no problem with Anthony working for his dad and Weeder Senior be depicted as a bad guy from a nineteenth-century penny dreadful for hinting that he'd like to change the company name to "Weeder and Son." The general idea is that by doing so, the character is supposedly surrendering his or her individuality and allowing him- or herself to be enslaved by his or her father's family politics. We are thus meant to hate the parent for wanting to crush the younger person's spirit, turn him or her into a monster of ambition that cannot or will not appreciate life and miss out on the goodns that would have otherwise magically appeared owing to trusting in faith, fate and the Pattersaints.

This, I should think, is Lynn's way of constantly trying to justify her baffling decision to drop out of school to marry her first husband and thus inconvenience the parents who paid for it and expected her to do something useful with her degree. My personal guess is that she sort of thought that they were trying to dictate to her when, in fact, they were trying to get an entitled, oblivious and immature twit to keep her eye on the ball. Since she thinks that anyone who offers even the mildest form of criticism is a bully who wants to boss her around because they haaaaaaaaaaate her and want to see her suffer, we have to deal with nonsense like Gavin charging his son rent because he wanted to get paid for temp work.

That being said, it's not as if this meed to shudder in horror at the prospect of becoming what Beth and Lynn misinterpret as their being nothing more than a pawn in a game that a heartless old man wants to play doesn't provide us with a lot of fun. Not only do we get to remind ourselves that Tony Soprano looks like the picture of generosity stacked up next to John and Elly Patterson, we can recall with some fondness the reason why Rhetta's being "forced" to "surrender her identity" and "enslave herself to her parents' whims" is extra-ludicrous. The reason that she was "bad" for Mike was that she wanted to stay in Milborough and keep him from travelling the world. Since Mike's ambition was to fort himself up in the attic of the Pattermanse so he could achieve the writer's trance, that seems a stupid thing to hold against her.
Tags: amazonian catfish tinfoil hat, the liographies

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