I’ve been watching the first season of HBO’s In Treatment (which I abhor) because it’s at the top of my Netflix DVD queue, and I’m too lazy to sign into my account and delete it. Every time I get the little red envelope with the next disc inside, I’m like, fuck! I hate you.
In Treatment is obviously well done. It has “intelligent” dialogue, and famous actors. But honestly, almost all of the characters are insufferable, especially Laura, played by Melissa George, whose puffy lips and tales of awful sexcapades afford her no sympathy, even though she is completely gorgeous.
Even worse, it’s fucking boring. It’s the only show I’ve ever watched, including the mostly irrelevant House, and Big Rich Texas, that I don’t even bother paying attention to fully. Instead, I listen to it as background noise while I Gchat, or wash dishes, or sit and pick at the dead skin on my toes.
The only redeeming factor of the entire show are the episodes with Sophie, played by Mia Wasikowska.
Sophie is this sassy little gymnast with a depressed mother who had sex with her married, much older trainer, and thus, keeps on trying to kill herself in attention seeking ways, such as riding her bicycle into oncoming traffic.
Mia Wasikowska plays her like a disdainful ingenué, still a child, who is desperately in need of help. She is arresting to watch for the entire thirty minutes she’s sitting on the taupe sofa in Gabriel Byrne’s mostly overwrought office.
Playing the just budding girl getting savaged by a much older man is something that Mia, in general, does well. For those of you who are as devoted to Victorian romance as I am, you may remember her from the movie Jane Eyre, an adaptation of the classic novel that was released earlier this year.
Directed by Cary Fukunaga, whom for some bizarre reason I thought was a Mexican until I googled him five minutes ago, the movie is my Bright Star of 2011.
In other words, it was awesome, I wept, and if you are a sap, or a genius, you should rent it immediately. It came out on DVD this past weekend.
Mia, who played little plain Jane with a hankering for the hot beast Mr. Rochester, was fantastic. Just pretty enough to be desirable, but not pretty enough to ruin the baseline premise of the story (which is that Jane Eyre is not that pretty), she redeemed the character that was ruined by Charlotte Gainsbourg and her jutting chin in Franco Zefferelli’s cinematic adaptation of the story in 1996.
Mia’s personal history is pretty uninteresting (as is the case for most people). She was living in a garbage dump in Fillory, eating rotten bananas when a Hollywood development executive, searching for the carcass of his dead dog so that he could freeze dry him and send him into space, found her perched in a rubber tire enclosure.
At the time, although she was 34 years old, she was only 24 inches tall. Realizing her potential, he took her home, and fed her on a macrobiotic diet until she REALLY almost starved to death. At a pool party, she was rescued by Helen Mirren, who fed her hamburgers until she grew to 5’4”, at which point Helen unchained her and introduced her to the agent that made her the star she is today.*
The reason why I’ve made her my icon is because she is about to fucking blow up. She starred in Gus Van Sant’s latest movie,Restless, which was released at Cannes earlier this year. According to IMDB, she has seven movies in pre-production, one of them directed by Jim Jarmusch.
She also recently got the pixie cut that signals, “I’m young, I’m in Hollywood, I’m not a great beauty, but I can fucking act, watch me make it” á la Carey Mulligan and Emma Watson.
If she plays it right, she could be the next Cate Blanchett, and if she gets all of her sexual organs removed, Tilda Swinton.
For you, Mia. For rocking the cover of W Magazine in April. For in your past life, wanting to be a ballerina. For young women who play strong roles with elegance and grace. For the way that your lips make everything you say seem sardonic. For you, Mia, you’re my icon of the week.
*Some of the information above is fabricated.