Sunday, December 24, 2006

Carrie Fisher Trashes Her Parents To Their Faces

I’m a big fan of Carrie Fisher. I admire her frankness and wit. In her books, she’s shown an uncanny ability to wring humor from the low points of her life, which range from drug rehab to being bipolar to discovering her husband was gay. So, I was excited to see her one-woman show Wishful Drinking, now playing at The Geffen Playhouse, and the show lived up to my hopes.

Upon arriving at the Geffen, I had to wait in the lobby for my friends to arrive. I immediately spied Leonard Maltin chatting with friends. Then I saw a petite woman with highly-coiffed blond hair. Her back was to me, but I thought it could quite possibly be Carrie’s mom, Debbie Reynolds. Sure enough it was Debbie, I realized, and so did Leonard, who rushed over to say hello. Debbie was glowing and looked quite well-preserved. I snapped a blurry camera-phone pic.


Knowing Debbie was there, it was hard not to cringe during some portions of Carrie’s show, as she describes bizarre moments like Debbie suggesting Carrie have a child with Debbie’s husband because the child would be attractive, and describes how two of Debbie's loser husbands stole all her money. In a smart and funny segment, Carrie talks about how her teen daughter was having a flirtation with Elizabeth Taylor’s grandson and she charts out all the relationships of her mother, her father Eddie Fisher, and Elizabeth, who stole Eddie from Debbie, on a blackboard in order to prove the teens’ relationship wouldn’t be incestuous. She talks about Eddie being married to a Chinese woman who passed away, and she said Eddie then moved to San Francisco because it has a large Chinatown and he’s got an affinity for Asian gals. She said he was even starting to look Asian himself due to all the plastic surgery.


Carrie talked about her father’s speed addiction, his abandonment of the family to be with Liz, and even recalled doing coke with him. And then I saw him in the lobby at intermission! Oy, imagine sitting in the audience and watching your daughter spill all your dirty laundry. Eddie is very petite and does in fact look Asian. I didn’t see Eddie and Debbie mingling, but they may have. If Carrie can laugh about things, maybe they can too after all these years.


Carrie never acknowledged her parents’ presence from stage. She just did her thing, giving a warts-and-all portrait of herself and them. Her anecdotes about Star Wars were really funny, and she even donned a donut-head wig. The finale will delight any Star Wars fan, and the rest of the show will please anyone with a love for sarcasm and a fascination with celebrity culture. I would have loved to be a mynock on the wall at the after-party with Carrie, Debbie, and Eddie.

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