Graham Goes to Dollywood (2001)

TV Special  -   -  Documentary
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Dolly Parton enjoyed her appearance on late-night talk show So Graham Norton so much that she invited the host to visit her theme park in Tennessee. Among other things, Graham rides a ... See full summary »

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Title: Graham Goes to Dollywood (2001– )

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Dolly Parton enjoyed her appearance on late-night talk show So Graham Norton so much that she invited the host to visit her theme park in Tennessee. Among other things, Graham rides a rollercoaster with 50 Dolly lookalikes, watches ostrich races at a rodeo and sings "Islands in the Stream" as a duet with Dolly herself. Written by Anonymous

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16 December 2002 (USA)  »

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Referenced in The 100 Greatest Christmas Moments (2004) See more »

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My Tennessee Mountain Home
Written and Performed by Dolly Parton
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Impressed with Graham's affection for Americans, and Dolly's affection for Graham
3 April 2003 | by (Albuquerque, NM) – See all my reviews

Many of us Americans have great respect for the business woman Dolly Parton is, and for the personally wonderful woman she is reported to be.

Even so, that respect doesn't always translate into being a fan of Dolly's music. I'm simply not a country/western fan. Though I've never been to Dollywood, the concept always seemed to me to be rather corny, and not my first pick of vacation destinations.

Graham, however, finds it endearing. From the mile-high platinum wigs, to the butterfly motifs (only a half-step up from unicorns, really), to the non-alcoholic dinner show, to the rope-lit red, white, and blue finale, it all genuinely brings a tear to his eye. "Say what you want, but these kinds of things are very important to Americans, and they do them very well." It's a telling quote. I suppose we do hold our public displays of patriotism in fairly high regard, which I guess is something of a dated notion to some of our European cousins.

I have to give huge credit to Dolly for her tolerant attitude, as well. Many country musicians flee from anything smacking of an alternative lifestyle. Dolly is either too big in the business, or simply too sweet to have a negative attitude about it. All of her fans are precious to her, and the things that make Graham who his is are special gifts from God. What a warm heart, and what a wonderful human being. God bless her.

Dolly takes the time to show Graham around personally as a guest of honor, sings with him, exchanges gifts, and guest-stars him in a Christmas music video. Along the way, she shares the story of her life and success with him. For Dolly fans, it may be a strange journey watching her cavort with a gay Irish chat-show host. Graham fans may find themselves to be too sophisticated for Dollywood. This special is most likely to be enjoyed by American casual Graham viewers, like me!

Maybe I've been too cynical. Perhaps the spouse and I should take a trip to Dollywood. (But there is someplace to get a drink around there, right?)


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