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re: The messy brilliance of the MY FAIR LADY film (VERY LONG!)
Posted by: JereNYC (JereNYC@aol.com) 04:34 pm EDT 04/01/21
In reply to: re: The messy brilliance of the MY FAIR LADY film (VERY LONG!) - BroadwayTonyJ 03:54 pm EDT 04/01/21

It occurs to me that the ending of the show/movie may reflect Eliza exercising a new found confidence/power in her relationship with Henry Higgins. For a good part of the story, she's very much alone in the world. She seems to have no friends other than other workers in Covent Garden (and even they don't pay enough attention to her to recognize her in a change of clothes). Her father just wants to use her for money. Even as late in the story as the Embassy Ball, Eliza is very much alone as even Colonel Pickering ignores her triumph in favor of praising Higgins for his.

But, over the course of the second act, Eliza finds a true ally in Mrs. Higgins and a demonstration that she truly has options now that she never had before in Freddy. And she demonstrates, and Higgins confirms, that she has made herself indispensable in the household. Plus, she has proven herself a capable linguist to the point of potentially becoming a teacher herself.

So, when she returns at the end of the story, this is a very different Eliza than we've seen before and I think she's feeling her power and realizing that she's the one actually in charge now (a less frantic version of a shocking and funny moment in AUGUST: OSAGE COUNTY, perhaps). What she chooses to do with her new power is the question...one that people should be debating as they head up the aisle, Lincoln Center production notwithstanding.
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