How did I miss the return of Downton Abbey? Oh yeah, they don't advertise it during football and basketball games. Seeing Anna fluff a pillow would be a nice break from the continuous airing of those pretentious, squirmy, psychotic Matthew McConaughey Lincoln commercials. Instead of wanting to buy a car, those commercials have brainwashed me into wanting to punch Matthew McConaughey in the face and smash that ridiculous car with my Felix Millian Model, 38-ounce Louisville Slugger that I keep under my bed to ward off home invaders.
I got to be honest, just like most guys, I watch Downton Abbey. I sit through an hour of fireplace cleanings and bed making and women with broken hearts because it might infinitesimally increase my chances of banging the crumpet with whom I share my couch.
I don't think too much about the show. I don't wonder why a Monty Python bit about trench warfare that cost about £2 (that's two pounds sterling or about $3 American) can look more realistic than this show because of the judicious use of dirt. I don't think about how fucking big that house is yet we only see four rooms. I don't think about why the chauffeur gets his own house and what does he do all day when nobody ever drives anywhere. I don't wonder what you call the female butler. I gotta believe that she has a cool name like butler or valet but what is it? And what does she do all day?
But once during a particular slow scene (ha, that's quite droll because every scene is slow, oh, so painstakingly slow and British), a synapse fired and I realized that I was watching Fiddler on the Roof. A Fiddler on the Roof for WASPs.
Less facial hair, better frocks.
Less singing, more eating.
Less dancing, more stiff upper lips.
Less Jews, more Episcopalians.
But it's the same damn story.
They're both about these cranky, old dads that really aren't that bad once you get to know them. They both have shriveled up shrews for wives that aren't that important and they both have three daughters that are the whole story.
Three daughters that drive their dads crazy. That's entertainment!
For the record, that photo of the Milkman sisters is really, really hot if you're an Orthodox Jew. Back when I was in yeshiva, we would dream of yanking it to a photo of three hot sheyne meydels wearing only their gotkes. Look at those bare arms! We would dream because if we actually yanked it, the rabbi told us it would fall off and that the Italians would take it and make sausages for their pizza.
But which of these long suffering dads has got the worst daughters? And should the Fiddler on the Roof guy sue the Downton Abbey guy? And maybe I should pitch Downton Abbey: The Musical to Matthew Broderrick.
The most important daughters with respect to screen time, Tzeidel was played by a young Barbra Streisand in her film debut. Mary is portrayed by a hot, British hat.
Fiddler Dad sets up Tzeidel with a butcher that is fat, old and rich. Tzeidel falls in love with a skinny, wimpy, little shnook named Steven Spielberg. To be fair to her dad, this is before Mr. Spielberg emigrated to America and became famous and rich.
Fiddler Dad has to cancel the wedding to the butcher and reschedule everything, causing all kinds of trouble, including the loss of a significant deposit to the caterer.
The worst thing Mary does is kill a Turk with her vagina. Being a snooty British television show, we don't get to see how, but I'm pretty sure that the Turk died with a smile on his face. Sadly, Mary almost never smiles anymore because killing a Turk with your vagina was frowned upon by the British uppercrust. Personally, if I knew Mary's vagina killed a Turk I'd be first in line to be the next victim. Now that I'm out of yeshiva I dream of dying with a big, mother-effing smile on my face while my schmeckle is buried deep.
Mary and her killer vagina win this battle.
Sybil vs Hodel
The second most important pair of daughters are also the most attractive, unless you have a thing for gingers. Hodel falls in love with the tutor, Starskihutch. The tutor runs off to Moscow to be a cop or
to participate in the revolution and Hodel runs after him.
Sybil falls in love with the chauffeur, Branson. Branson runs off to Ireland to be a writer or to particpate in the revolution and Sybil runs after him. Branson is alarmingly short, like leprechaun short, and is very Irish Catholic, more Irish Catholic than Jackson Heights in the early 80s. Starsky is Jewish and more or less regular-sized.
Sybil wins, but just by a nose. (The Anti-Defamation League can kiss my ass, it's a horseracing thing.)
Chava has a thing for White Russians and we're not talking vodka and cream. She does the unthinkable and falls in love with a cossak-loving Christian with a hoe. Dad is rightfully upset and tells her she is dead to him. That's tough love. My dad told me I was dead to him once but then I unexpectantly coughed up the toilet water, kicked him in the nuts and made good my escape.
Edith is homely and bored. She kisses a dairy farmer and tries to marry a rich guy named Anthony with a dodgey arm that is all talk and no trousers. There were a thousand hints that Tony One Arm was a pansy but I chose to ignore them because I don't like to be judgemental. Upon further reflection, we know Tony's gay because Thomas the Bumsucker, a gay man with the single worse gaydar of any gay man ever in the history of gaydom, never hit on him.
Edith's abhorrent behavior has resulted in a significant amount of sighs, hurumphs, and mutterings. That doesn't sound biblical but if you're rich and you're British, that's the equivalent of spitting on your daughter and dancing on her metaphysical grave.
Edith wins big, big enough to call the match a tie.
Both fathers have shite for daughters and Downton Abbey is Fiddler on the Roof without the Jews. Can Matthew Broderick do a convincing English accent?