Little Women (1994) Is Our Aesthetic

It’s December, and our choice aesthetic is the 1994 adaptation of Little Women: earth tones, plaid dresses, candlelight, roaring fires, Winona Ryder’s bob, Meg upstaging Queen B Sallie Moffat in the blue afternoon dress, surprise pianos and a lot of quilts. The production design of Gillian Armstrong’s 90s masterpiece was cozy, lived-in and totally real: you could actually see the March family staging plays in that attic, gathering around that rustic table, or having a singalong at Beth’s piano. There’s also a lot of winter – hence our December pick – and it’s depicted so beautifully that it will make you appreciate the season.

This post is also known by its alternate title, I Have A Real Christmas Tree And An Old House And Now I Think I’m A March Sister.

Orchard House’s Foyer

The moment the sisters call out “Marmee’s home!” and you see the muted stenciled floors, sidelights and printed wallpaper, you feel like you’re home, too.

Full disclosure: my parents live in an 1830s farmhouse that’s almost identical to Orchard House, so maybe that’s because it literally looks like my home.

As per usual, we’re going to point you over to Hooked On Houses – if Little Women is your aesthetic, you need to check out their Orchard House post.

The March Living Room

These shades of olive green! The built-in bookshelves! The brick fireplace! It’s so beautiful. It’s also a great reminder that, while the current iteration of “farmhouse” style is all whites and grays and spartan decor, there’s another path to the same cozy feeling.

Everyone’s Hair

Real-life adult womens’ hair in the 1860s didn’t really mesh with our current trends. Think center partings, snoods and clumps of sausage curls at the sides. Fortunately for us, the March girls are in their teens so their hair is long and loose – it was even kind of a ‘thing’ in the book that Jo didn’t want to start wearing her hair up like a, um, big woman.

Jo even looked sassy in her cropped ‘do, and calling Winona Ryder’s hair her “one beauty” is an evergreen laugh line (I’m sure if she time traveled to the 1860s, they’d have gotten a kick out of it then, too).

Everyone’s Winter Clothes

It can be hard to look cute and feel comfy in dresses during those cold winter months, but it’s not as though girls in the 19th century had another option. The Marches cope with the cold in lots of layers and tons of warm earthy tones — it was 1994, after all.

Some favorites are Jo’s  red ball gown (plus the choker on the black satin cord!)

Meg’s hunter green coat with the big buttons (and Jo’s no slouch in the outerwear department – I think garnet’s her signature color)

Amy’s plaid dress

I always especially loved Amy’s old-fashioned knitted ear warmer and vest (Meg had a matching one – sweet touch!).

Oh! And Jo’s fitted gray dress!

The sleeves and waistband!

If you find historical costumes interesting too, I suggest the Frock Flicks podcast episode on Little Women.

The Dining Room

Bonus: image links to hilarious post from Homeless Monsters about visiting Orchard House

The dining room is a little less cluttered than the rest of the house, but the simple table and chairs and calming colors would easily fit in a Magnolia spread.

The Garrett

The Marches cosplay as the Pickwick Society in their sweet attic hideaway, and as always, something about setting up a space in an attic is so much more comfy, mysterious and cool than the same exact setup in a regular room of the house. It’s all in the eaves and sloped ceilings. You can just see how the girls have adapted and added to this space over the years.

Bedroom Fireplaces When Manuscripts Aren’t Burning In Them

That was not okay, Amy.

[I wrote this piece about Amy March being a total B, and it was 80% in jest, but I haven’t forgotten about the manuscript.]

The Girls’ Bedroom

Pardon the scarlet fever happening in the foreground

I love the red ticked curtains, wallpaper and green wainscoting. I always wish I could get a closer look at that wall-o’-trim. I have so many questions.

Snow On Snow On Snow

In real life, snow is an inconvenience that turns your commute into a risky obstacle course, but on screen – when I don’t have to shovel it – snow is serene and beautiful. The first 40 minutes or so of the movie are snow-covered and it totally works to get you into a winter mode, especially if you want to watch something that isn’t entirely focused on Christmas.

Meg’s Afternoon Dress

Sallie Moffat can go fly a kite. Meg’s chill, forget-me-not blue gown looks way prettier than child labor silk and we all know it.

 

The Opera Sets

Weird or not weird: I wouldn’t mind if my house looked like this opera set.

The Boarding House

Jo March was the original free-spirited girl who starts over in New York City after a major heartbreak in order to “find herself.”

If you weren’t super-poor in the 1870s, this was probably the second-most Bohemian place you could live.

Europe

… Europe being the first. While I feel awful for Jo when Amy gets her Eurotrip with Aunt March, at least Amy makes the very most of her adventure. It’s like the 1800s version of when you went on your study abroad semester and came back a different person (in your own head, anyway). It’s so fun seeing Amy level up in her clothing, like that kicky straw boater hat, boho linen smock, and high-1870s-style fitted jacket.

The trunk of memories

When Jo opens that trunk of memories that spurns her to write Little Women, I always regret my Konmari-Lite tendancies and wish I had kept tangible objects from my teen years.

That Soundtrack

The soundtrack is poignant, spirited and heartbreaking right when it needs to be. I hear like 2 measures and I’m sad about Beth all over again.

 

 

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Gritty, Dystopian ‘Little Women’ Plotlines

Remember Little Women? Of course you do. It’s the 1860s tale of 4 New England sisters – the bitchy one, the one with a complex gender identity, the social anxiety one, and the other one – learning about life, love, and saving your work in case of manuscript fire.

Except now that the C.W. is getting into it, Little Women is going to be more like this:

Little Women is described as a hyper-stylized, gritty adaptation of the 1868 novel by Louisa May Alcott, in which disparate half-sisters Jo, Meg, Beth, and Amy band together in order to survive the dystopic streets of Philadelphia and unravel a conspiracy that stretches far beyond anything they have ever imagined – all while trying not to kill each other in the process.

Okay, we can work with that. I read Little Women probably a dozen times as a kid, and I lived in the dystopic streets of west Philly. Here are some sample plotlines:

  • When the girls are sorted on … I don’t know, Sorting Day … in the burned-out shell of the Reading Terminal Market, Meg is a Carer, Amy is a Flouncer, Beth is a Die-er, but Jo… Jo is OTHER and must hide out in the garret of Aunt March’s house so The Faction doesn’t enlist her.
  • Aunt March’s house is, like, somewhere in Delco.
  • The girls from the ruling class all collect L.I.M.E.s, or ligament-installed mechanical elements. They’re like weird extra robot arms and legs. Amy, being poor, buys a sawed-off body part from the black market instead … until the schoolmaster throws it in the snow. Gritty.
  • Beth, a meek child, frequently steals away to Laurence II, the mega-computer next door where the brain and memory of Mr. Laurence were uploaded before he was captured by … Them. I guess.
  • “They” have maintained a ruling society that has cut the lower class off from the modern world, but Meg infiltrates at Sally Moffat’s ball on the Main Line.
  • Meanwhile, Jo must hide the burned control panel of the wire tap she wears to the event by standing awkwardly against the side of the room.
  • In a feral state of fear and mania, Beth beheads a hitchhiking robot that she meets on one of her few trips out of the home.
  • Amy has to conceal her radioactive superpowers that she acquires after she falls through a crystallized chemical layer while sludge-skating on the Delaware.
  • She is saved by Jo, who is still furious that Amy smashed the hard drive for her allegorical exposee on Them.
  • Dystopian Jo didn’t save her work in a second location, either.
  • And Dystopian Amy is still a bitch.
  • A group of young rebels, led by Jo and Laurie, meet in a secret cell in Manayunk. It’s up to Operation Pickwick to save the day.
  • Instead of being reasonably good at piano and an accomplished artist, respectively, Beth and Amy are an EDM D.J. and a computer graphic programmer.
  • With the underclasses and recent immigrants cut off from the health care system, Beth takes it upon herself to care for a struggling foreign family in the grips of scarlet fever. After beating the disease, she lives under a cloud of weakness and brittle introversion, until eventually relapsing and dying in her teens. Okay, so you don’t really have to change that one. Like I said, grit. Pure dystopian GRIT.

Okay, so this is not going to be good. And if it airs, I’m watching every week.

Best Of C+S 2014: Amy March Was A Total Bitch

There comes a time, as you grow and change and find your place in the world, that you realize that some of your childhood was a lie. For instance, I once thought that the March sisters from Little Women were four wholesome, hoopskirted gals a-wassailing through Greater Boston. But as I’ve grown older, I’ve learned that really, there were three wholesome broads with those skirts, and one total bitch. That bitch? Amy Curtis March.


Growing up in the 1990s, it was sort of normal for a girl to be into the 1800s. The American Girl catalog was in your mailbox, the Little House books were in your Scholastic orders, and everyone had a mom or grandma who was really into Dr. Quinn. The 1994 film adaptation of Little Women was right in the zeitgeist. When I saw that it was on tv around Christmas, nostalgia got the better of me. I had to watch. And, umm… something jumped out at me that didn’t when I was a kid. So, I decided to re-read the book on my bus rides to and from work, and it was confirmed.

Amy March was a huge freaking bitch.

I accepted early on that Amy was my March counterpart. While I loved writing and piano, I was neither a free-spirited tomboy like Jo nor a gentle, shy dead girl like Beth. And Meg — seriously, did anyone ever want to be Meg? Leave a comment if you did. No, I was an Amy. I’m also the youngest of four, and I – like many youngest children – am kind of hammy and want everyone to love me. Like the youngest March sister,  I’m even the only one of my siblings to miss out on getting a nickname. Alcott never mentioned it, but I just know that Amy felt like she got the shaft there.

So,while it does pain me to say this, let me repeat: Amy March was a total bitch. Let’s discuss:

Nobody Cares About Your Nose, Amy.

Amy hates her nose, which is described as a small, flat snub nose. Oh, so an adorable nose? A nose that is too cute? What a trial that must be – like those girls who complain about being “too pretty.”

Amy wants a “Roman Nose,” which according to Wikipedia, is “a human nose with a prominent bridge, giving it the appearance of being curved or slightly bent.” Wow, March. Have you ever got shit taste in noses. That’s probably what my nose looks like, and you know how I got it? Not by sleeping with a clothespin on it – no, I  broke it. Twice.

Oh, You’re Too Good for Hand-Me-Downs? Can it, Amy.

The hardest thing in Beth’s life was dying of scarlet fever and the hardest thing in Jo’s life was having a dumb-bitch little sister who stole her manuscript, Eurotrip, and Laurie, but Amy — the hardest thing in her life was having a tiny, cute nose and having to wear hand-me-downs.

Alcott writes: “Amy was in a fair way to be spoiled, for everyone petted her, and her small vanities and selfishness were growing nicely. One thing, however, rather quenched the vanities. She had to wear her cousin’s clothes. Now Florence’s mama hadn’t a particle of taste, and Amy suffered deeply at having to wear a red instead of a blue bonnet, unbecoming gowns, and fussy aprons that did not fit. Everything was good, well made, and little worn, but Amy’s artistic eyes were much afflicted, especially this winter, when her school dress was a dull purple with yellow dots and no trimming.”

Look, I had a cousin who was an only child, and her mom shopped at the good stores. The day I’d get the big black trash bag of her hand-me-downs was like a freaking holiday. Oh, Florence’s mama sent you a red bonnet? Well my cousin’s mama sent me skorts and shortalls, and I was happy to have them.

Amy. Limes Are Stupid.

Poor thing. Always thwarted in her search for citrus fruits.

Pickled limes were the fashion at Amy’s school, because apparently she was educated with a bunch of other little dummies. So, Meg gave Amy the rag money to buy some limes, and I’m not even completely clear on what “rag money” is, but I’m pretty sure that if your family is poor enough to rely on something called rag money to supplement your income, safe to say you’re pretty hard up and shouldn’t be wasting your money on preserved citrus fruits.

Limes were outlawed in Amy’s classroom, but obviously all of the kids still brought them in, kind of like tamagochis in my school, circa 1998. [Sidenote: the spell-check suggestion for tamagochis is “masochists,” which is pretty apropos. What were we doing to ourselves? At least when limes are the 6th-grade trend, you don’t have to sneak off to feed it every 3 hours.] But, Amy wouldn’t give this girl Jenny a lime because Jenny was being a total bitch, so Dumb Bitch Jenny told the teacher that Amy had limes. He made Amy throw the limes into the snow and Amy had a fit even though a citrus fruit will do just fine in the snow. As a matter of fact, Amy couldn’t have known this, but in like 70 years they’ll invent this magical box that keeps food cold all of the time and – will wonders never cease – the food lasts longer. Also Amy’s limes are PICKLED, which admittedly is gross, but it means they can stay outside for a minute. [However, the limes do get stolen. We’ll go there later.]

Oh, and then the teacher hit Amy’s hand, which was majorly not cool. Our biggest bitches in this story are really the teacher and Dumb Bitch Jenny. Still, Amy’s a bit at fault for squandering the family’s rag money on some stupid limes.

Amy March Hates Irish People. This Irish Person Says Amy March Can Suck It.

The Republic of Ireland has retaliated by naming its least-appealing souvenir porcelain doll after Amy March.

When Amy’s limes got thrown into the snow, she wasn’t upset because she lost her limes – she was upset because the limes were “exulted over by the little Irish children, who were their sworn foes.” Yep, Amy March’s sworn foes were anonymous Irish street urchins. You bet your sweet bippy that one didn’t make the Winona Ryder movie. It wasn’t losing the limes that made Amy cry like – forgive me – a little bitch, it was the Irish kids getting the limes.

Amy. You live in Boston. Concord, whatever. You know those little Irish street children? They’re going to run your city. In 100 years, the descendants of one of those lime-eating Boston Street Micks is going to be our nation’s president. Your city’s basketball team is literally going to be called the Celtics. Don’t worry about what basketball is. If your grandchildren ever get arrested, you know who’s going to do it? An Irish cop. But you don’t even have to wait 100 years. Even in the 1860s, every one of those Irish kids has a pack of 14 siblings to back them up in a fight. And those kids are scary. They have been working in silk mills since they were 5. You know how my great-great-great grandmother survived the Potato Famine? By eating GRASS. Honestly, poor Irish children from Boston in the 1860s are probably the worst “sworn foes” you could make.

So, on behalf of Irish and part-Irish Americans, let me just tell Amy March that she can suck it. Know what she can’t suck, though? A lime – because the Irish kids got them. Booyah, March.

Ruining the ONE THING Your Sister Loves? Pretty Bitchy.

Remember when Amy was a little piss who burned her sister’s manuscript because Jo dared to have fun without her? God. What is your beef with Jo, Amy? Tell me. Because it’s sort of a recurring theme throughout the book.

On the plus side, I’d like to thank Amy March for the world’s first lesson that you should always, always back up your work.

You’re Using It Wrong, Ames.

I just cannot with this basic girl and her five-cent vocabulary. Honestly, though, Amy is 12 when the book starts, and that’s an 1860s 12. In 1860s Massachusetts, you could be a six-year veteran of the mills at 12. You could be betrothed at 12. But no, Marmee sent Amy to the ol’ schoolhouse instead, probably because of the child’s demonstrated inability to speak the English language. Look, Amy wasn’t spending her time watching tv or instagramming. The only thing to do was read books and learn how to use words properly, yet she was somehow incapable of doing it. For instance: “label” for “libel” (when she actually meant slander) and “vocabilary” for “vocabulary.” You just know this bitch says “liberry” and “pisgetti.”

I’m not saying I’m glad her teacher beat her at school, because I’m not, I’m just saying that if any of the March sisters deserved a formal education, it wasn’t Amy. All I know is, if Amy March lived today, she’d be that little cousin of yours whose tweets and Facebook posts are so incomprehensible that you basically have to do an English-to-English translation every time you read them.

She’s not even that good at art so maybe she should just shut up about it.

Amy March isn’t a real person, but she was somewhat based on Louisa May Alcott’s sister Abigail May. May probably had a lot of gifts and talents, but art wasn’t one of them. Here are some of her drawings:

Compare the scale of Marmee(?) in the chair with the girl to the right. It’s like a Cabbage Patch doll next to a Barbie.

My favorite part is the floating table.

May died young, and that’s sad, but you know what else is sad? These sketches.

I Ain’t Sayin’ She’s A Gold Digger (Yes, I am. Yes, she is.)

So, first Amy gold-digs her way into Fred Vaughn’s heart. Then, she sees the opportunity to get with Laurie, who in addition to being wealthy, also provides her with the opportunity to ruin Jo’s life. So, she does that instead. Either way, she’s a gold-digger.

Steals Jo’s Trip

Eyes on the prize, Li’l Amy. Eyes on the prize.

Jo put up with Aunt March’s Crappy Plumfield Storytime every day, with the understanding that at some point she’d get a Eurotrip out of the deal. Look, for a 20-year-old girl in the 1800s, it wasn’t as easy as just finding a college with a good study abroad program.

Then, Amy – freaking Amy – swoops in, befriends Aunt March, and gets the trip. As an indirect result, Jo had to move to a boarding house and marry an old German man.

Steals Jo’s Man

Jo and Laurie were endgame. I refuse to hear differently. Sure, Jo shot down Laurie’s proposal, but I think it was just the wrong time — she was coming back for him later, and that’s all there is to it.

So, when Laurie proposed to Amy — because she was the next-closest thing to Jo — Amy should have had the decency to know that Laurie was Jo’s one true love.

Instead, Amy was a total bitch, so she married him.

Conclusion

After all that, here’s the truth: now that I’m an adult, Amy is my favorite. Beth does nothing, gets scarlet fever, then dies. [Also, please don’t stone me, but did anyone else think Beth wasn’t exactly playing with a full deck?] Meg does nothing, twists her ankle, then gets married. Jo ruins her chance at true love, and acts so obtuse about how to behave in human society that I think she’s just doing it to get on her sisters’ nerves. She’s like that one girl in college who tried to be unconventional just for the sake of it, and you were always like “you know what? You’re not Amelie. Stop trying to be Amelie.”

Whether or not you think Amy is a huge freaking bitch (and don’t get me wrong, she is), that girl knew how to go after what she wanted. Somehow, she was ridiculously well-liked, but at the same time, you sure as hell didn’t walk all over Amy March. But, if I ever ended up with an Amy March of my own, I would need to make like Marmee and send her to live with a great-aunt for her teenage years – because honestly, what a little bitch.

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Pop Culture Moments That Make Me Cry

Some pop culture moments are engineered to make you cry. Any time they show you an old man who is alone, or a beloved dog bravely facing his mortality, you know they’re trying to make you bawl.

Others aren’t supposed to be sad, but for some reason they grab onto your feelings and twist them until your eyes water. For instance: any time a child sings and it’s very beautiful.

Then there are those moments that were meant to be sad, but came out hilarious instead. I present for your approval:

This is the rare tearjerker scene that makes us weep – because we’re laughing so hard. So with Dawson Leery as our patron saint of pop culture crying, we’re listing those moments in entertainment that brought us to tears. Our scale stretches from one Crying Dawson (your eyes are lightly watering, but there’s no real tearstorm) to five Crying Dawsons (or as we like to call it, a Full Leery). And disclaimer: there will be spoilers ahead. Consider yourself warned.

One Crying Dawson1 crying dawson

  • The final, heartrending scenes of The Notebook. And I’m only putting it here because zero crying Dawsons wasn’t an option. I’m a monster, I know.
  • The end of Bridesmaids where Maya gives one last glance back at Kristen before she gets in the limo with her new husband. There’s an unspoken understanding between two best friends that just gets me.
  • Any time an actor/actress that is announcing Emmy/Oscar/Golden Globe nominations at the asscrack of dawn, only to announce their own name as one of the nominees.
  • Cyrus realizing he was the reason his hubs got killed on Scandal. You brought it on yourself dude.
  • When Little Michael Scott wants to grow up and have 100 kids so he can have 100 friends and no one can say no to being his friend.
  • The end of City Lights (taking it way back to the 1930s here!), when the blind girl sees the tramp for the first time.
  • When Mary is sort of mean to Martha in A Secret Garden but it’s because she doesn’t know how to play or love and her parents are dead and she lives in a creepy house in the middle of nowhere.
  • The “Love Is A Dream” sketch with Phil Hartman and Jan Hooks, serving the one-two punch of old people thinking about their youth, and people who died before their time.
  • When the now-elderly Peaches take a team picture and sing their song one last time in A League Of Their Own.
  • In The Great Gatsby, both the book and film adaptations, when Daisy delivers the “beautiful fool” line. Gut punch.

Two Crying Dawsons2 crying dawsons

  • When Papouli taught us about Greek dance, the love of family, and brief character arcs on Full House.
  • The look on Louis’ face when his daughter plays the violin duet with the neighbor on Louie.
  • The episode of The Simpsons where Homer gets the crayon lodged in his brain removed and suddenly becomes smart. At the end Lisa reads a letter he wrote her from before he got dumb again and it was the first time anyone in her family understood her.
  • Also, after Maggie is born and Homer goes back to work at the plant, he covers the mean plaque from Burns “Don’t Forget, You’re Here Forever” with her pictures so that it now reads “Do it for her.”
  • When Brian Williams reported on the NBC Nightly News that his daughter Allison Williams had been cast in the live version of Peter Pan. No matter what you think about the casting decision itself, you have no soul if you don’t get emotional watching him be so proud of his daughter.
  • Mr. Feeny dismissing class one final time.
  • Jen Lindley’s final conversation with Jack. And TBH, I might have cried more when Jack and Dougie declared their commitment to each other on the beach.
  • When Will believes his father isn’t going to leave him again on Fresh Prince of Bel-Air but Pops lets him down again, and Will breaks down in the arms of Uncle Phil asking why his dad doesn’t want him.
  • The voiceover at the end of The Time Travelers episode of How I Met Your Mother, when Future Ted says that he wants 45 extra days with The Mother… probably because at that point I had a pretty good idea of what that darn show was going to do to us.
  • Leslie saying goodbye to Ann on Parks and Rec. Uteruses before duderuses.
  • When Mel Gibson is getting ready to leave in The Patriot, and his mute daughter runs after him screaming “I’ll say anything!” Doubly so now that she’s passed away.

Three Crying Dawsons

3 crying dawsons

  • The final moments of that old dog in Homeward Bound.
  • The Muppets (2012), just in general. It made both of us cry and neither of us knows why.
  • Jessie singing When Somebody Loved Me in Toy Story 2.
  • The little girl singing Desperado in In America.
  • I was in a hotel a few months ago and came across a documentary on like the Travel Channel or something that was about the new Diagon Alley attraction in Harry Potter World at Universal Studios Orlando, and the planning, construction and attention to detail that went into it before they opened the doors. Before opening it to the public, a select group of young HP fans were let into the park as a sneak peak and the look of awe was astounding. I can’t imagine being a kid, being obsessed with the books & movies and finally being in Diagon Alley for real.
  •  In what is one of my favorite dances over all the seasons of So You Think You Can Dance, golden child Travis Wall choreographed an emotional contemporary (and Emmy nominated) piece to Coldplay’s Fix You, a dance based on his own experience of helping his mom through her bout with cancer. While Fix You is always a tearjerker, add on the brilliant dancing by Robert Roldan and Allison Holker and you have a piece of pure art that will leave you breathless.
  • Speaking of SYTYCD, season 11’s Ricky Ubeda was one of those winners who actually deserved the victory, thanks to his combination of talent and personality. But during Hollywood week, it was his solo that made me (and a lot of other viewers) single him out from the crowd, thanks to vulnerability and emotion he brought to the dance.
  • Lily telling Marshall his dad died on How I Met Your Mother.
  • The final scene in Friends when they all walk out of Monica & Chandler’s to go to Central Perk and there’s one final sweep of the empty apartment with swelling music in the background.

Four Crying Dawsons

4 Crying Dawsons

  • Carrie Underwood singing. Pretty much singing anything. Especially if it’s live. I’ve seen her in concert three times and every single time I was brought to tears. She sings with such passion and conviction. And if she’s singing any kind of religious song, you know she’s channeling the big JC, making her voice even more powerful for some reason.
  • The scene in both the book and movie version of The Fault in our Stars where Hazel is giving the ‘eulogy’ for Gus in the church.
  • The Normal Heart. All of it.
  • Friday Night Lights – pretty much the entire show. However, I’ll pinpoint one that stands out, which is when Coach throws Matt Saracen into the shower, but QB1 breaks down, insisting that his loved ones always abandon him. And to continue this Zach Gilford lovefest, the entire episode of The Son is heartwrenching, but I won’t ruin it for you if you haven’t seen it.
  • Call it the Jason Katims effect because Parenthood also makes me cry during every episode, no matter what. Again, it’s hard to pick just one, so the scene where Kristina tells the family that she has cancer – a scene so powerful with no words at all. This current season hasn’t been lucky for Zeek, and because of personal reasons, I’ve found his storyline extremely upsetting. Also Mae Whitman crying. Legit the best crier in the biz.
  • The series finale of Gilmore Girls in which Rory assures Lorelai that she’s “already given her everything she needs” before she goes on the road following Senator Barack Obama. In fact the final like 20 minutes of that show including Rory’s speech under the tent make me cry so hard that I’ve only watched the finale approx thrice, as opposed to like the 30 times for all the other episodes.
  • The finale of I ❤ Nick Carter where he and Lauren get married. Legit stayed up til 4am watching it and it was totally worth it. His family sucks but good thing they have the rest of BSB and other friends and family – that’s what got me.
  •  Jim Halpert learning he and Pam are having a baby after she injures herself at the company picnic. The whole office singing Seasons of Love to Michael on his last episode. The ‘Forever’ flash mob at Jim & Pam’s wedding and them getting married on the Maid of the Mist and Jim cutting off his tie. The entire series finale. I had a hard time saying goodbye to The Office.
  • The first 5-ish minutes of Up.
  • When Mary and Edith realize that they’re the only ones left after Sybil dies.
  • I was never big into Buffy, but that scene where Buffy tells Dawn that their mom has died, and you’re watching it through the window of her classroom? Nope.
  • DOBBY. RIP.

Five Crying Dawsons

5 crying dawsons

  • The Quarterback episode of Glee where Finn (Cory Monteith) dies. I literally went through almost an entire box of tissues during that and I’m not even a huge Glee fan. The pain on everyone’s face was real, and watching Lea Michele sing – forget it.
  • The end of The Best Man Holiday – what in the fuck was that all about?! I paid $15 to see Taye Diggs and his fellow HBM co-stars possibly take their clothes off and it turned out that I needed extra sleeves because my tears and snot were all over the shirt I went in with.
  • Right before Leslie and Ben get married, when she’s talking with Ron in the hallway. I’m a wedding crier anyway, but jeez.
  • In Little Women, when Jo is going through the trunk in the attic after Beth has died (note: Beth’s death gets knocked down to 4 Crying Dawsons because of the weird brogue Claire Danes starts speaking in).
  • Everything that happens after Sara Crewe goes to live in the attic in A Little Princess. This is the second Frances Hodgson Burnett appearance on this list so I hope wherever she is, she’s proud of her vast legacy of children’s tears.
  • The funeral scene in Philadelphia, when they show the home movies of Beckett as a kid with his mom.
  • Good Will Hunting: 4 words – “It’s not your fault.”
  • My Girl: 6 words – “He can’t see without his glasses!”
  • Dead Poets Society: 4 words – “O Captain! My Captain!”

Amy March Was A Total Bitch

Growing up in the 1990s, it was sort of normal for a girl to be into the 1800s. The American Girl catalog was in your mailbox, the Little House books were in your Scholastic orders, and everyone had a mom or grandma who was really into Dr. Quinn. The 1994 film adaptation of Little Women was right in the zeitgeist. When I saw that it was on tv around Christmas, nostalgia got the better of me. I had to watch. And, umm… something jumped out at me that didn’t when I was a kid. So, I decided to re-read the book on my bus rides to and from work, and it was confirmed.

Amy March was a huge freaking bitch.

I accepted early on that Amy was my March counterpart. While I loved writing and piano, I was neither a free-spirited tomboy like Jo nor a gentle, shy dead girl like Beth. And Meg — seriously, did anyone ever want to be Meg? Leave a comment if you did. No, I was an Amy. I’m also the youngest of four, and I – like many youngest children – am kind of hammy and want everyone to love me. Like the youngest March sister,  I’m even the only one of my siblings to miss out on getting a nickname. Alcott never mentioned it, but I just know that Amy felt like she got the shaft there.

So,while it does pain me to say this, let me repeat: Amy March was a total bitch. Let’s discuss:

Nobody Cares About Your Nose, Amy.

Amy hates her nose, which is described as a small, flat snub nose. Oh, so an adorable nose? A nose that is too cute? What a trial that must be – like those girls who complain about being “too pretty.”

Amy wants a “Roman Nose,” which according to Wikipedia, is “a human nose with a prominent bridge, giving it the appearance of being curved or slightly bent.” Wow, March. Have you ever got shit taste in noses. That’s probably what my nose looks like, and you know how I got it? Not by sleeping with a clothespin on it – no, I  broke it. Twice.

Oh, You’re Too Good for Hand-Me-Downs? Can it, Amy.amy-little-women-helen-page

The hardest thing in Beth’s life was dying of scarlet fever and the hardest thing in Jo’s life was having a dumb-bitch little sister who stole her manuscript, Eurotrip, and Laurie, but Amy — the hardest thing in her life was having a tiny, cute nose and having to wear hand-me-downs.

Alcott writes: “Amy was in a fair way to be spoiled, for everyone petted her, and her small vanities and selfishness were growing nicely. One thing, however, rather quenched the vanities. She had to wear her cousin’s clothes. Now Florence’s mama hadn’t a particle of taste, and Amy suffered deeply at having to wear a red instead of a blue bonnet, unbecoming gowns, and fussy aprons that did not fit. Everything was good, well made, and little worn, but Amy’s artistic eyes were much afflicted, especially this winter, when her school dress was a dull purple with yellow dots and no trimming.”

Look, I had a cousin who was an only child, and her mom shopped at the good stores. The day I’d get the big black trash bag of her hand-me-downs was like a freaking holiday. Oh, Florence’s mama sent you a red bonnet? Well my cousin’s mama sent me skorts and shortalls, and I was happy to have them.

Amy. Limes Are Stupid.

Poor thing. Always thwarted in her search for citrus fruits.

Pickled limes were the fashion at Amy’s school, because apparently she was educated with a bunch of other little dummies. So, Meg gave Amy the rag money to buy some limes, and I’m not even completely clear on what “rag money” is, but I’m pretty sure that if your family is poor enough to rely on something called rag money to supplement your income, safe to say you’re pretty hard up and shouldn’t be wasting your money on preserved citrus fruits.

Limes were outlawed in Amy’s classroom, but obviously all of the kids still brought them in, kind of like tamagochis in my school, circa 1998. [Sidenote: the spell-check suggestion for tamagochis is “masochists,” which is pretty apropos. What were we doing to ourselves? At least when limes are the 6th-grade trend, you don’t have to sneak off to feed it every 3 hours.] But, Amy wouldn’t give this girl Jenny a lime because Jenny was being a total bitch, so Dumb Bitch Jenny told the teacher that Amy had limes. He made Amy throw the limes into the snow and Amy had a fit even though a citrus fruit will do just fine in the snow. As a matter of fact, Amy couldn’t have known this, but in like 70 years they’ll invent this magical box that keeps food cold all of the time and – will wonders never cease – the food lasts longer. Also Amy’s limes are PICKLED, which admittedly is gross, but it means they can stay outside for a minute. [However, the limes do get stolen. We’ll go there later.]

Oh, and then the teacher hit Amy’s hand, which was majorly not cool. Our biggest bitches in this story are really the teacher and Dumb Bitch Jenny. Still, Amy’s a bit at fault for squandering the family’s rag money on some stupid limes.

Amy March Hates Irish People. This Irish Person Says Amy March Can Suck It.

The Republic of Ireland has retaliated by naming its least-appealing souvenir porcelain doll after Amy March.

When Amy’s limes got thrown into the snow, she wasn’t upset because she lost her limes – she was upset because the limes were “exulted over by the little Irish children, who were their sworn foes.” Yep, Amy March’s sworn foes were anonymous Irish street urchins. You bet your sweet bippy that one didn’t make the Winona Ryder movie. It wasn’t losing the limes that made Amy cry like – forgive me – a little bitch, it was the Irish kids getting the limes.

Amy. You live in Boston. Concord, whatever. You know those little Irish street children? They’re going to run your city. In 100 years, the descendants of one of those lime-eating Boston Street Micks is going to be our nation’s president. Your city’s basketball team is literally going to be called the Celtics. Don’t worry about what basketball is. If your grandchildren ever get arrested, you know who’s going to do it? An Irish cop. But you don’t even have to wait 100 years. Even in the 1860s, every one of those Irish kids has a pack of 14 siblings to back them up in a fight. And those kids are scary. They have been working in silk mills since they were 5. You know how my great-great-great grandmother survived the Potato Famine? By eating GRASS. Honestly, poor Irish children from Boston in the 1860s are probably the worst “sworn foes” you could make.

So, on behalf of Irish and part-Irish Americans, let me just tell Amy March that she can suck it. Know what she can’t suck, though? A lime – because the Irish kids got them. Booyah, March.

Ruining the ONE THING Your Sister Loves? Pretty Bitchy.

Remember when Amy was a little piss who burned her sister’s manuscript because Jo dared to have fun without her? God. What is your beef with Jo, Amy? Tell me. Because it’s sort of a recurring theme throughout the book.

On the plus side, I’d like to thank Amy March for the world’s first lesson that you should always, always back up your work.

You’re Using It Wrong, Ames.

I just cannot with this basic girl and her five-cent vocabulary. Honestly, though, Amy is 12 when the book starts, and that’s an 1860s 12. In 1860s Massachusetts, you could be a six-year veteran of the mills at 12. You could be betrothed at 12. But no, Marmee sent Amy to the ol’ schoolhouse instead, probably because of the child’s demonstrated inability to speak the English language. Look, Amy wasn’t spending her time watching tv or instagramming. The only thing to do was read books and learn how to use words properly, yet she was somehow incapable of doing it. For instance: “label” for “libel” (when she actually meant slander) and “vocabilary” for “vocabulary.” You just know this bitch says “liberry” and “pisgetti.”

I’m not saying I’m glad her teacher beat her at school, because I’m not, I’m just saying that if any of the March sisters deserved a formal education, it wasn’t Amy. All I know is, if Amy March lived today, she’d be that little cousin of yours whose tweets and Facebook posts are so incomprehensible that you basically have to do an English-to-English translation every time you read them.

She’s not even that good at art so maybe she should just shut up about it.

Amy March isn’t a real person, but she was somewhat based on Louisa May Alcott’s sister Abigail May. May probably had a lot of gifts and talents, but art wasn’t one of them. Here are some of her drawings:

Compare the scale of Marmee(?) in the chair with the girl to the right. It’s like a Cabbage Patch doll next to a Barbie.

My favorite part is the floating table.

May died young, and that’s sad, but you know what else is sad? These sketches.

I Ain’t Sayin’ She’s A Gold Digger (Yes, I am. Yes, she is.)

So, first Amy gold-digs her way into Fred Vaughn’s heart. Then, she sees the opportunity to get with Laurie, who in addition to being wealthy, also provides her with the opportunity to ruin Jo’s life. So, she does that instead. Either way, she’s a gold-digger.

Steals Jo’s Trip

Eyes on the prize, Li’l Amy. Eyes on the prize.

Jo put up with Aunt March’s Crappy Plumfield Storytime every day, with the understanding that at some point she’d get a Eurotrip out of the deal. Look, for a 20-year-old girl in the 1800s, it wasn’t as easy as just finding a college with a good study abroad program.

Then, Amy – freaking Amy – swoops in, befriends Aunt March, and gets the trip. As an indirect result, Jo had to move to a boarding house and marry an old German man.

Steals Jo’s Man

Jo and Laurie were endgame. I refuse to hear differently. Sure, Jo shot down Laurie’s proposal, but I think it was just the wrong time — she was coming back for him later, and that’s all there is to it.

So, when Laurie proposed to Amy — because she was the next-closest thing to Jo — Amy should have had the decency to know that Laurie was Jo’s one true love.

Instead, Amy was a total bitch, so she married him.

Conclusion

After all that, here’s the truth: now that I’m an adult, Amy is my favorite. Beth does nothing, gets scarlet fever, then dies. [Also, please don’t stone me, but did anyone else think Beth wasn’t exactly playing with a full deck?] Meg does nothing, twists her ankle, then gets married. Jo ruins her chance at true love, and acts so obtuse about how to behave in human society that I think she’s just doing it to get on her sisters’ nerves. She’s like that one girl in college who tried to be unconventional just for the sake of it, and you were always like “you know what? You’re not Amelie. Stop trying to be Amelie.”

Whether or not you think Amy is a huge freaking bitch (and don’t get me wrong, she is), that girl knew how to go after what she wanted. Somehow, she was ridiculously well-liked, but at the same time, you sure as hell didn’t walk all over Amy March. But, if I ever ended up with an Amy March of my own, I would need to make like Marmee and send her to live with a great-aunt for her teenage years – because honestly, what a little bitch.

Are You The Carrie or The Shoshanna? Labeling Yourself in Your Friend Group

In the mid-90s, when I was a minimally-supervised 11-year-old with an age-inappropriate comedy obsession, I was really into standup on Comedy Central. In one special, Margaret Cho described groups of female friends: there is always the smart one, the sweet one, and the whore.
At the time I was too young to know anyone who would self-identify as a “whore,” but I got the concept. Whenever a group of girls formed a close-knit group, they’d try to find their pop culture friendship spirit animal. In 1998, this meant Spice Girls. “We are JUST like them! I’m such a Scary!” Or, Now and Then: “She says that she’s a Teeny, but I’m all seriously? You’re ROBERTA.”
Basically, Cho was right, but she was wrong. Groups of lady-friends do sort themselves into types, but there aren’t always three. Depending on how many friends are in your group, you fall into one of the famous friend-group clusters below. Are you the Jo in your March Sisters? Or the Phoebe in your Friends friends? Read on to find out:

Three:

The Cho Grouping: The smart one, the sweet one, and the whore.
Do you have a high powered job, are you career driven, or do you read a lot of books? You’re the smart one. Are you not too bright, but beloved by many and always up for a good time? You’re the sweet one. Are you REALLY always up for a good time? Sorry, lady. You know where I’m going with this.

The Friends Formula: The Monica, The Phoebe, and The Rachel.
The Monica is sensible, perfectionistic, and possibly a little shrill. You may also be a good cook or formerly fat. The Rachel is friendly and fun, and has the best outfits and hair – seriously, Monica, what is with that Dudley Moore haircut? However, she can be a tad self-absorbed. The Phoebe is weird, but don’t worry, she’s also the best one. She’s quirky and kooky, and she gets extra points in basketball because she’s dainty.

Four:

The Sisters March: The Meg, The Jo, The Beth, Or The Amy
If you’re a Meg, you’re sensible and don’t like to go against the grain. If you like adventure, have a creative spirit, or are seriously pretty butch, you’re a Jo. Do you like the finer things in life, and sometimes pretend that you’re a little better-off than you are? Amy it is. If you’re a Beth, you’re either really boring, terminally ill, or (spoiler!) already dead. Or, everyone hates you and they made you be Beth. I suggest you break away, run off to the nearest big city, and are all “who’s the Jo now, bitches?”

The Bradshaw Bunch: The Carrie, The Samantha, The Charlotte, and The Miranda
You know this already. A Carrie is sort of like a Jo, in that she’s a writer or observer, but she has a bit of a sweet one aspect. Almost Rachel-y. A Charlotte is Meg-y, but a little less perfect, and sort of screechy, like a Monica. If you are a Miranda, you are serious and analytical, and possibly a little depressing sometimes (seriously, all that takeout?). The Samantha is the whore. I wish I had a more delicate way to put it. Smith, though. You know?

The Now and Then-ers: The Chrissy, The Roberta, The Samantha, and The Teeny
This was a pretty easy group to put yourself into as a kid. If you were tomboyish, you were the Roberta. And – bonus – you got Devon Sawa in the end! If you had family troubles like divorced parents, your friends probably made you be Samantha. If everyone’s family lives were pretty cool, then the person who was into sci-fi or scary stories or who had a little sister was the default Samantha. The girls who were into performing and wanted to be famous actresses were Teenys (that was me). If no one fit into that, then Teeny was whomever was most boy-crazy or who knew how to make fake boobs out of jello (which, if it works, let me know). Chrissy was either the prissy girl, or – hate to say it – whoever was the chubbiest in the group. Rude.

The Girls Girls: Hannah, Shoshanna, Jessa, and Marnie
If you’re Hannah, you are probably a writer, or an otherwise creative person just trying to find your place in the world. [Why is there ALWAYS a writer? If these friendships were demographically accurate, everyone would be friends with at least one HR rep or itinerant temp.] Shoshanas are, at least at first, the naïve optimists who haven’t had much – or any – of a love life to speak of. Marnies are the girls who are pretty normal and generally good friends, but have their shit less together than they would think. First season, I thought I was a Marnie, but then season two happened and I was like “oh… yeah, nevermind.” If you’re worldly, impulsive, and a little bit wild, you’re a Jessa, and you probably have very nice hair and outfits.

Five

The Spices: Scary, Sporty, Posh, Ginger, and Baby
I don’t have to describe these, because the names really do say it all. Except for Ginger. Before the British slang for redheads took over on our side of the Atlantic, nobody really seemed to know what that was supposed to mean. However, I STILL had to be the Ginger because she and I had red hair. Figures. In some circles she was referred to as “Sexy Spice,” but not in my circles, because my circles were in a Catholic elementary school. Although, that didn’t stop me from watching adult standup comedy that throws around the word “whore.”

Of course, there are plenty more lady friendships to choose from. Are you a Kristy or a Claudia? A Blanche or a Sophia? Maybe they’re all just variations on the Cho Grouping after all. If you don’t want to admit that, maybe it’s because you’re the whore.

Roger Sterling, Silver Fox: My Top Old Man Crushes

Mad Men is back on the air, and with it, is one of my favorite grey-haired characters, Roger Sterling. I’d like to say this is outside the norm for me, this attraction to a mature gent, but truth be told it isn’t. Even though I’m young-ish, most of the time I’m into a celebrity, it begins with the phrase “I have this weird crush on…”.

If, like me, you think that Roger Sterling is pure platinum, then maybe you will understand the following weird crushes:

Bill Clinton

Bill Clinton was my first weird crush, probably. This dates back, embarrassingly enough, to his sex scandal days. However, I probably didn’t fully understand that at the time, because I was a pint-sized 11-year-old at Catholic school. In hindsight, I don’t know if my crush began with Slick Willy himself or with Clinton as played by Darrell Hammond, because I was really into SNL at the time. Actually, the latter is probably more embarrassing, so let’s just say not that. Really, I like Bill in spite of the Lewinsky thing, not because of it. He’s so smart and charismatic! Babies love him, as do some old people. Bill’s a charmer. Besides, if anything or anyone is Hillary Clinton-endorsed, they can’t be half bad.

Friedrich Bhaer

Friedrich Bhaer is a fictional character. He’s not what you’d call real, exactly.  He is a  much-older German professor who takes up with Jo March at the end of Little Women, but he’s exactly the right match for her. She and Laurie wouldn’t have worked out, long-term. Anyway, in Little Men, they open up a boarding school for boys and it’s pretty much the cutest. In the 1994 film adaptation, Bhaer was played by a dapper, gray-tinted Gabriel Byrne, and it really worked. Or, it really worked if you were the world’s creepiest third-grader, anyway.

Christoph Waltz

As I sort of suddenly discovered during the Oscar liveblog, I have a weird crush on Christoph Waltz. I don’t know. I guess my type is middle aged, kindly, intelligent German nationals. But he is kind of appealing, right? No? All the more aging Bavarian men for me, then.

This One Professor I Had In Law School

This guy taught… I don’t know, civil procedure? Criminal procedure? He taught a class in law school that I definitely attended. We called him the Silver Fox and he was, he really was. I wish I still worked in his legal market so I could run my hands through his glimmering locks… or, I mean, attend one of his CLEs.

The Late Paul Newman, Circa 1980s

I’m not even sorry about it.

The Gracefully Aging Matt LeBlanc And Matthew Perry

In normal cases, I’d list these two without reservations. The only problem is that their greying hair also carries with it the demise of my youth. I don’t like that reminder. But still…

Roger Sterling

Obviously.

Point-Counterpoint: Ugly Cry Showdown – Anne Hathaway vs. Claire Danes

 Film-goers and TV viewers love a good ugly cry. As a matter of fact, apart from gaining or losing a lot of weight or wearing unflattering facial prostheses, ugly crying may be the best way to secure acting award nominations. While less-serious starlets look put-together and beautiful while they cry, maintaining matte skin as a single, picturesque tear rolls down their cheeks, ugly criers are the real deal. Their eyes and noses get red, there is snot all over, their mouths gape, and sometimes I swear they’re practically drooling.
Two of the best ugly criers of our generation are Anne Hathaway and Claire Danes. Both got their start on network TV, then moved on to film roles. Today Danes is an Emmy winner for her work on the acclaimed Homeland, while Hathaway is nominated for an Oscar for her role in Les Miserables. But until now, nobody has settled who the best ugly crier of the two really is. Wonder no longer — Cookies + Sangria point-counterpoint has you covered.

Point: Hathaway ugly-sing-cried in Les Miserables.

Most actresses struggle to produce even an acceptable ugly cry, but Hathaway did the unthinkable – she managed to ugly cry and sing at the same time. Do you even realize the breath and mucus control that requires? Next time you’re ugly crying, pay attention to your diaphragm. It’s probably spasming, or at least not working regularly. Alright, now try to sing I Dreamed A Dream. It’s almost impossible! But not for Anne Hathaway. Note how she retains her trembling, wailing mouth-shape while performing a pitch-perfect rendition of a musical theater classic — LIVE. For added unattractiveness points, Hathaway’s hair is cropped and she’s made up to look like she has tuberculosis. THAT’s how you cry when you’ve just been forced into prostitution and haven’t seen your child for years and your teeth were ripped out and you’re singing your feelings.

Counterpoint: Claire Danes’ Ugly Cry Is So Iconic That It Was Lampooned On Saturday Night Live

Okay, Hathaway does a pretty good ugly cry, but do you know what the root of all comedy is? Truth. Well, and robots fighting with things. And fart noises. But mostly truth. So when SNL chose to parody Claire Danes’ ugly crying on Homeland, they were doing so because her hideous weeping is known far and wide. Once something has been spoofed on this late night comedy, you know that it’s a feature on the pop culture landscape. I mean, come on. They put mom jeans on the map.

Counter-Counterpoint: Yeah, But It Was Hathaway Who Did The Claire Danes Ugly Cry Parody

Dying is easy, comedy is hard. What that means is, it was nothing for Hathaway to ugly cry as a consumptive prostitute, but to ugly cry and make it hilarious? That takes some serious chops.

Point: Claire Danes International Ugly-Cried in Brokedown Palace

Have you seen this? If you had HBO in the early 2000s, the answer is probably yes, because it was on all the damn time. Anyway, Brokedown Palace is a treat. Claire Danes ugly cries her way in to and out of a third world prison. And she ugly cries so vehemently that she is practically slobbering and seizing. Seriously, like you wonder if someone was off camera ready to hold her tongue so she didn’t swallow it.

Counterpoint: Hathaway is so committed to crying that she cried every day while filming Love And Other Drugs

According to the Internet, Hathaway said: “I was a wreck from start to finish. I think I cried every single day. I had to lean so much more heavily on everyone around me than I’m used to. I’m used to pulling my own weight. But I totally fell apart.” Did you get that? God, Hathaway ugly cries even when the camera’s not rolling. You can tell me she cried beautifully, but I won’t believe it for her second. Recreational ugly crying?! Anything for her craft. [Ed. note: please note Hathaway’s references to “leaning heavily” and not being able to “pull her weight.” This was obviously before she went from regular skinny to very, very skinny for Les Mis. Her weight loss secret? Expelling excess water through tears. Very strict regimen. Lots of onions and feelings.]

Point: Danes’ Award-Winning Teen Angst Crying In Little Women, Romeo And Juliet, and My So Called Life

You know what’s hard? Being a teenager whose love interest wrote a song that you thought was about you – and learning that it was about his car. You know what’s really hard? Being a teenager dying of scarlet fever. You know what’s ridiculously hard? Being a teenager whose star-crossed love affair ends in the death of the both of you. It’s hard to even imagine how difficult those scenarios are, but luckily we don’t even have to – Claire Danes’ tears did the talking, before she even had a driver’s license. What were you ugly crying over at that age? Whatever it was, you probably weren’t winning Emmys for it.

Counterpoint: Anne Hathaway is the Crown Princess of Genovia

A lot of things happened to teenaged Hathaway, too! Like, this one time, she thought she was a regular teen, but then she found out she was a princess! But you know what she didn’t do? Cry about it, really. She made some ugly faces of disgust and shock but that only gets you like a half-point, maybe. I still don’t know how I’m supposed to be scoring this but I think Danes wins this round.

Point: Temple Freakin’ Grandin, though.

The real Temple Grandin has said that “geeks that cry keep jobs” and that she “turned her anger into crying.” What are the chances that one noted crying enthusiast would play another noted crying enthusiast in an HBO biopic? And you thought there were a lot of parallels between Halle Berry and Dorothy Dandridge.

Counterpoint: (Rachel Getting Married Spoiler) Killed her sibling while drunk. How’s that for ugly?

Little known fact, if your character inspired the ugly cries of other characters in the film, that counts a little, too. It’s like getting a recruitment bonus when you sign a friend up for your insurance.

The Verdict:

I don’t really know how to quantify this. I mean… they’re both really good. Why does everything have to be a competition? Why can’t we just appreciate their unique, teary, snotty-nosed talents on their own merit? Okay… I’m calling it a tie. But if Hathaway wins on Oscar night, she becomes the reigning queen of the Ugly Cry, until Danes EGOTs or something.

Note: All images link to source. You’ll notice that a lot of the Danes pics link to The Claire Danes Cry Face Project . I found out about that blog when I was drafting this, but haven’t read it yet because I didn’t want to be influenced… but now I’m going to go spend half a day there and you should too!
 
Note 2: Those wanting further discussion of the Hathaway ugly cry should join us on Sunday, February 24, as we live-blog the Oscars!
 
OSCAR UPDATE: Anne Hathaway won an Oscar for her Fantine ugly cry, gave a shoutout to prostitutes, and made our worst dressed list. She started her speech with “… it came true!”. “It” being the dream that she dreamed, of being the ugliest crier in all the land. Details are in our liveblog.