Tracey Ullman has been practicing her unique brand of comedy for American audiences for over a decade. She has fashioned an astonishingly diverse gallery of richly imagined characters -- males as well as females -- each of whom has something profoundly amusing to say about the best & worst of the human condition. In this book, these vivid creations are given an opportunity to spout on such loaded topics as mothers, royalty, & childhood. Blithely ignoring limits & convention, Tracey creates resonant characters whose frailties are at once larger than life & yet uncannily familiar. Lavishly illustrated with photos of the characters in action.
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From the mouths of Tracey Ullman's myriad personae comes this scrapbook of soliloquies, photographs of characters in action, and yes, paper dolls. Tracey Takes On, adapted from her HBO series of the same name, showcases the protean and prolific actress and comic chameleon. Surely 20 characters and alter egos is some kind of a record. There's Trevor Aylii, gay airline steward; Hope Finch, 19-year-old student at Sweetbriar College ("She is not currently a lesbian, but she's young and impressionable."); Fern Rosenthal, a Long Island homemaker and a member of the Royal Family known only as H.R.H. (Her Royal Highness). Sparing neither Great Britain nor its former colony, Ullman lampoons or impersonates types with aninimitable style that sometimes seems too tackily real to produce an innocent giggle--more like an "Oh, no" groan.
First come the character's biographies, followed by commentaries; each character opines on such pressing subjects as royalty, mothers, crime, family, sex, fame, movies, and politics. There's some new material, but most of the book consists of schtick from the first two seasons of the TV series; new is a patently absurd screenplay by Hope Finch and an encounter between H.R.H. and President Clinton. For those who insist on living dangerously, paper dolls of each persona may be cut out and let loose in one's home. What will Tracey Ullman take on next?
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