|Enter "The Girl most Likely To..."|
a 70's, revenge-film spectacular
Years ago, under the influence of an unhealthy dose of cough medicine, I watched a rerun of The Girl Most Likely to... (1973) in the wee hours of a sickbed morning. Waking up the next day, I couldn't remember the name of the black comedy or many of the details; I did remember that I liked what I saw and that the star was a young Stockard Channing. Some minor investigation (asking around and checking some of my movie-review books - this was pre-internet) resulted in not a single lead. Cut to many years later when, on a search for something totally unrelated, I stumbled upon the DVD for The Girl Most Likely to... Needless to say, I whipped out the old credit card and, quick as lightning, I was home enjoying this prime example of wacky tacky cinema all over again.
The story of The Girl Most Likely to..., an original made-for-TV movie, is about as straightforward as it gets. Channing plays Miriam Knight, a lovelorn girl, heavy of body and brow, who must endure the stereotypical indignities and alienation associated with sub-standard beauty in America.
"'Miriam, don't worry. Your turn will come.'"
Surviving not only the mistreatment of family, friends, and schoolmates, Miriam barely survives a catastrophic accident that results in full-body-and-facial reconstructive surgery. Astoundingly, the surgery leaves her completely unrecognizable yet, thanks to skillful plastic surgeons, stunningly beautiful (or at least that is expectation of our suspended disbelief). Her new appearance allows Miriam to exact her wildly-creative revenge on those richly deserving of their comeuppance. If for nothing else, The Girl Most Likely to... is mandatory viewing for the hilarious scenes of retribution, played always to the slapstick-iest hilt.
|It was time to start paying everyone back..."with interest."|
It's pretty neat trick, managing to have hair and makeup done underneath the bandages!
Believe it or not, this tale of "an unloved, ugly duckling transformed by plastic surgery into a luscious, lovely lady," was written by that woman all-too-familiar with the surgeon's scalpel herself, Joan Rivers.
|Sometimes looking good is its own revenge, right Joan?|
Am I right, Joan? Joan? Joan....
I'll be the first to admit that the 70's are by far not my favorite years for fashion and culture but I would be lying if I said that I didn't have a soft spot for "The Brady Bunch," The Carpenters, Freaky Friday, and one Miss Miriam Knight, dog-turned-fox. And, just for the record, I'm no snob when it comes to polyester either.
If you're thinking of creating a "new you" for the new year, might I suggest The Girl Most Likely to... (viewable in its entirety here) as a cautionary tale rather than a how-to guide. Happy New Year!