Scandal is back! And I’ve taken to calling the last three episodes of Shonda Rhimes’ Scandal, Dethroned.
For all those who don’t understand what I mean by that, let me explain. While the marriage rate in the United States has dropped, the title of Mrs., is still as sought after as it was in the 1950s and just as highly prized as ever, i.e. TLC’s TV show, ‘Say Yes to the Dress.’ And when that titles comes with money and privilege it is even more coveted.
The season opener ‘Heavy Is The Head, hit me like slap in the face. I remember exactly where I was and what I was doing when I heard the news of Princess Diana’s tragic death in a car accident.
It was a Saturday night, more like very early Sunday morning, on August 31, 1997. I was laying on the floor (the coolest spot) of my un-airconditioned one bedroom apartment watching a movie and listening to The Stalkers rage outside when the News bulletin interrupted the late night movie on Channel 7 ABC Chicago.
And like so many women my age, I had followed her (engagement announcement, royal wedding, birth of her sons, hounded by the paparazzi, Camilla, separation, and divorce), religiously. She was the first ‘notable’ royal woman of the 20ith century to be dethroned.
Diana’s dethronement was very, very public, and unfortunately made that way by her actions. She was like Mellie on Scandal, in that she refused to go quietly into the night. She fought a very public fight with Prince Charles, letting the world know that she blamed Camilla for the problems in her marriage.
I have seen other women, too, who, on the verge of being dethroned have done some very interesting things. For example, the first Mrs. Donald Trump, Ivana Trump.
When Ivana Trump found out that Donald was planning on dethroning her with a newer model, Marla Maples, she promptly confronted Miss Maples and then when that didn’t work, she went out and had plastic surgery making herself, as lots of News commentators remarked, look very similar to Miss Maples after her surgery.
I’ve also witnessed women continue to insinuate themselves into their ex’s life long after they’ve been dethroned. We’ve all heard the complaints from the new wife that the old wife keeps calling and making life miserable for her.
Probably, because of the deep pain of being rejected by someone you love and who promised to love you. It is that humiliation of knowing, that while you were giving your all, he was taking you for a ride, as when Mellie was crying to Cyrus about her and Fritz being partners.
Now, instead of being in the parade, smiling and doing the princess wave, you’ve been kicked to the curve and are forced to watch as another woman sits in the passenger seat beside your man, smiling and doing the princess wave. And after the parade passes you by, you go home to your humble little flat, with dinner for one, while she’s dressed in designer gowns entertaining kings and queens (your former in-laws) in your mansion (house).
And then there are the women, who like Mellie wants to do, remarry their ex’s again and again just so they won’t have to deal with the pain that comes from being dethroned.
My guess is that Mellie will be one of those, insisting that Fritz remain in the marriage even though by now, she knows Fritz doesn’t love her because it’s not about wanting Fritz. It’s about being dethroned.
PS As the story shifts to the international arena, (Paris is Burning), I’ll bet Mellie would rather burn down the White House than see another woman, black or white, take her place.
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