Tina Fey’s writing and performances have been iconic to me since I was a teenager in high school watching Mean Girls. I still watch the film and say ‘Oh Lindsay you were so adorable and now you are so gross’, but the rest of the time I’m saying “Tina Fey, I fucking love you.” And that’s how love stories usually begin.
Fey’s role in our culture is significant to our generation even if the people of our generation don’t come right out and say it. Fey, was the first female Head Writer for SNL, she wore Mom Jeans and Kotex Classics and she showed us modern day high school without making it feel trite. (If you don’t get my examples it’s because you simply aren’t watching enough television!)
Fey’s fans and admirers are the first to point out that Fey has broken through barriers and opened doors for women in comedy everywhere. She forged a path for those looking to succeed her and has shown women that, naysayers be damned, you can be the head writer on the longest running show in history and make it good, quality programming. Her first book,Bossypants, invites the reader to experience the story of how Fey became the lovable Sarah Palin look-alike she is today.
Fey approaches her book in an engaging way. She does not tell every story of her life but rather the ones that defined her future or were hilarious moments with the people that mean the most to her. Instead of reading about her wedding we read about her disastrous honeymoon on a cruise ship that effectively ruined travel for both her and her husband. Instead of talking about her sex life, she discusses her awkward attempts at finding love and when she does find her husband, we do not even find out how they met.
Fey also discusses her day-to-day life of juggling a kid, writing and starring in a show and her doppelganger, Sarah Palin. In, Bossypants, we discover that female comics are changing roles. They aren’t just girlfriends and wives, they are main characters with their own talents to broadcast. She chose to tell the story of Amy Poehler’s first read-through at SNL in which Amy is joking around with another cast member, being vulgar and unladylike. When another male cast member calls her out as being unladylike, Amy turned on him and said, “I don’t fucking care if you like it!” This story represents Fey’s message to the world of comedy. Female comediennes can be funny, however they choose to be, and they don’t care if you like them. You can’t stop women from taking the comedy world by storm.
Tina Fey is the representative for talented and hilarious women everywhere-comics, actresses, and those funny women you meet in real-life all the time. She is fortunate that being herself and writing about race, gender roles, and whatever else she can think of are the basis of a role model. She gets to be honest and honest comedy is the most powerful comedy we can experience.
If you really want to delve into the mind of a comedic genius, I highly recommend this book. If want to laugh, I highly recommend this book. And if you’re a woman, I’d say it’s mandatory.
Check out Tina Fey on Late Night With Jimmy Fallon, courtesy of latenightwithjimmyfallon.com!
About the Author: Mallory Hayes lives in Sacramento, California while she figures out which graduate schools she wants to apply for. She loves reading, writing, and great comedy. She also loves penguins and would gladly dedicate her life to penguin research if it didn't conflict with her need for things like sunlight and functional appendages.