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Pryderi Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Aug-21-06 12:13 PM
Original message
HBO's Calamity Jane
I'm a faithful watcher of "Deadwood", and I can't stand the way Calamity Jane has been portrayed.

Was Calamity Jane really a drunken, cowardly lesbian?
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noonwitch Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Aug-21-06 12:48 PM
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1. Watch Doris Day in "Calamity Jane"
She's prettier and cleaner, and very straight. If you can stomach the racist portrayal of the indians, that is, or a musical western.

I actually like the way HBO is portraying her. I think it's pretty realistic. I don't know about the coward part-she seems braver when she's drunk and cowardly when she's sober. I don't think she's a lesbian, she had too much of a crush on Wild Bill Hickok for it to be that simple. I think she's just a woman who wants to live like a man, and doesn't have too many prejudices (she was friends with the n-general).
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cedahlia Donating Member (883 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Aug-21-06 01:16 PM
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2. Another Deadwood Hooplehead here!
I watched the "Biography" episode of Jane on A&E, and it conveyed that she definitely was an alcoholic, and also a teller of tall tales (often about herself and her various "adventures.") She married a couple of times, and even had a child. So while it's possible she could have been a closeted lesbian, the history presented in that particular documentary painted her as a straight woman who happened to have some traditionally masculine traits. But, people are complex, you know? I think it's certainly possible that she could have had feelings for women. Many gay people have married members of the opposite sex, so just because she married men, doesn't necessarily mean she was straight.

As far as how Jane is portrayed on Deadwood, I always kind of got the feeling that she was gay, even before these recent romantic developments with Joanie. I know David Milch did endless amounts of research for the show (he and the woman who plays DW's Jane, Robin Weigert, were both even interviewed for the A&E bio) so Milch's take on Jane's history must have been that is was very possible for Jane to have been gay, despite her marriages to men and her affection for Wild Bill. I find all the different takes on Jane (from cutesy Doris Day to the much grittier Weigert version) to be quite fascinating.

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Ptah Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Aug-21-06 01:19 PM
Response to Original message
3. Acorrding to Wikipedia, she was bi

She was also bisexual and a cross-dresser:

"Calamity Jane both worked in brothels (as a woman)
and patronized them (as a man). 'One of Calamity's claims',
. wrote Cy Martin, 'was that in male garb and with the aid
of a dildo, she could deceive any prostitute she wanted'...
Her cross-dressing allowed her to explore and learn
what was then excluisvely male activities - shooting and
railway work for example - and to make money from sex
work no matter which gender she chose."
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