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An endless list of reviews have called The Days & Nights of Molly Dodd an
80s version of either Mary Tyler Moore or Ally McBeal, in that the show
centered on a single, quirky, professional woman living alone. A key
difference however is Blair Brown.
No disrespect towards MTM or Calista Flockhart, but Blair Brown brought a very unique difference to her character. Mary always seemed to be on the edge of total embarrassment and Ally on the edge of total emotional meltdown. Molly Dodd on the other hand, while often not knowing what she really wanted, was always able to handle whatever life threw at her. She wasn't socially awkward like Mary Richards nor was she emotionally bipolar like Ally McBeal.
Consequently Molly Dodd was someone you'd not just want to go out with, but would want to be friends with. Blair Brown made Molly not only attractive, but fun, lovable and most of all, trustworthy. Not to be too sexist, but she made Molly 'one of the guys'. So never played relationship mind games, and instantly saw (and laughed) when someone did. She valued people totally on their character & personality.
If you woke up next to Mary Richards you'd see her silently & guiltily sneaking out of bed. Ally McBeal would either be planning your wedding or putting a knife in your back. But Molly Dodd would just be there.
And again, while MTM is (or was) attractive enough, she had a very standoff-ish, patrician, repressed kind of look. And Calista Flockhart is just, well, very cute. But Blair Brown, on the one hand she blends unnoticeably into a crowd, but on the other she is a gorgeous, drop-dead classic beauty.
Every time I look up a Molly Dodd listing, I see requests for this
incredible series to be produced on DVD. Who can we let know there is a
market for this and it should be out on DVD? It's one of the best series
ever, yet it seems to have dropped off the face of the earth (except for a
run on GoodLife, which many cable affiliates don't seem to
What needs to be done to get Days and Nights of Molly Dodd released on DVD???
The show started on NBC, which foolishly cancelled it, then the Lifetime cable network picked it up. Molly Dodd was similar to Ally McBeal, but she was not as neurotic. She was just a single woman trying to make it out in the world, and helped (and sometimes hindered) by the quirky characters surrounding her. My favorite was her doorman, who apparently had lived quite a life before he took the job in her building. My other favorite character was her crazy boss at the publishing company she worked at right before the series ended for good. There have been very few good shows with good women characters, and this is one of the best.
This series was a wacky satire of a female's life in New York City. Some
would find it slightly surreal, but not a true New Yorker. Much more
true-to-life than "Sex in the City", this was a real woman, real
real doorman, etc. True, the apt was too large for her means, but maybe it
was "rent-controlled/stabilized". Her doorman was very intelligent and
witty, but I know some who are!
My favorite celebrity spotting was Nathan Lane who appeared in an early episode playing a putative employer and who, at the time, was so hilarious and appealed to me so much I said "He is going places!" How right I was. I also adored David Straithorn as her very shy bookstore-owner boyfriend.
I loved this show & would buy it on DVD or watch it in syndication!
charming. quirky. surreal. trippy. sweet. sad. disappointing.
rewarding. alluring. intellectual. musical. ENTRANCING!
This show finally nabbed me when I was at someone else's house, and Molly was reporting on an undercover police investigation. This was a chick show, and I'd have been damned if anyone caught me enjoying a chick show. But the quirky comedy was just my style. I was hooked. Obviously influential on the self-satisfied Ally McBeal, Molly Dodd is in serious need or some new time in syndication.
Molly's middle-of-the-night chats with her dearly departed dad.
Marion Ross playing the role of her overly-concerned mother.
Her all-knowing doorman.
Perpetually unlucky in love.
Bizarre fantasy sequences.
Her neighbors (Ron [who later turned up in 'Mad About You'] reading the paper, and the back page headline shouting "Ron Wants Out" when their marriage was crumbling.)
Gut-wrenching loss (anaphylactic shock.)
Hope from despairing loss.
Lordy, I miss this show!
I remember this show fondly because it was filmed in New York City on location without a laugh track or studio audience which was quite a departure for a sitcom about a single woman in the thirties played by the wonderful Blair Brown as Molly Dodd. She must deal with her mother played by the equally wonderful Allyn Ann McLerie. I don't remember ever seeing Molly's brother and sister twins, Mamie and Dwight Dodds who lived in the suburbs. Molly's single life is far from the Sex in the City girls. It was more realistic and believable about Molly trying to find the right man and job. I remember it first on network later on lifetime before it ceased completely from television. The cast and crew were first rate and the writing was simply wonderful just like Molly's life.
I watched this show religiously in the late 80s when I moved to Boston. It was a show with great feelings. The first year or so on NBC was so-so; I didn't see those shows till after it left there. But on Lifetime the show was fantastic. It seems to have gone into oblivion now unfortunately. Maybe someday it'll be rebroadcast on cable... A great show with a soul.
Blair Brown has had a great deal of success, and Days and Nights was acknowledged, but both Brown and her prime-time show were still under-rated. The series - at its peak - was as good as, if not better than, Seinfeld, and its excellence was largely down to Brown. And Molly Dodd became the template for certain type of 90s "gal" - smart, sophisticated but artless. Dodd was like every other young woman one met in the big city. We did not see enough of this type on TV or in the movies, and, unfortunately, the template now - for both real life and in the media - is the shallow, self-centered and completely self-involved flibbertigibbet portrayed in everything from Sex and the City to The Hills.
This show turned me into a lifelong Blair Brown fan. It was sophisticated yet quirky, and I enjoyed its urban flavor at a time when I was living in a small town and longing for the big city. It tried to be challenging in its depiction of characters and relationships, and in that sense was probably ahead of its time. (Those of you who are Blair Brown fans -- particularly if you're from Florida -- should try to get hold of "A Flash of Green," which unfortunately is not an easy movie to find.)
Molly's life was a collage of bits and pieces that never really made any sense!! She perennially engages in a personal synopses vindication analysis every time she wants to switch brands of coffee!! She will spend her last $300.00 on a dress at MACY*S, but,if she wants to tell a friend of hers off, she will call them collect!! This show thrived on the unconventional! Moving to cable after being on NBC for two years, and having a largely female audience, it was anything but estrogen laden sap!! Molly Dodd's priorities dictated that, on a caprice, she should be more concerned about what happened to her when she was 12 years old, than she should be about constructing her precarious future! Molly Dodd was impervious with regards to matters such as her career and/or her relationships, or, shall I say, lack of them!! A potpourri of emotional misconfiguration is what gave this show its identity!! NBC's attempt at dialog driven programing for the esoteric, in the late 1980's, did not catch on the way they wanted it to!! Nevertheless, "The Days and Nights of Molly Dodd" was a definite cut above your average run of the mill television show!!
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