I haven’t even been able to bring myself to watch David Cronenberg’s original Dead Ringers (1988) so I almost feel like I don’t even have any business watching something inspired by it. But what convinced me is A. it’s on Amazon Prime, which maybe it has been all along and I didn’t realize it, and B. I thought Alice Lowe was involved– and I loved her movie Prevenge, about a pregnant widow who believes her unborn baby is guiding her to exact murderous revenge on those who may have been responsible for her husband’s death.
Well, joke’s on me. It’s Alice Birch, not Alice Lowe. I don’t even know who that is! And furthermore, I am squeamish as hell when it comes to gynecological stuff and things related to pregnancy and birth. That makes me feel like a terrible feminist and also maybe a terrible ally and support system to all of my family members and friends who are also mamas. I am sorry! I’m grossed out by all of it! Out of all of the horror in the world, this is some of the stuff I find most horrifying. Which sucks for me, because I have a body containing all of these bits that must be invasively poked and prodded and examined on an annual (or more frequent basis) and so even walking around in this flesh is a constant fucking horror story.
…so why did I think I wanted to watch a movie, let alone a whole television series about Beverly and Elliot, a pair of famous gynecologists planning to open a high-tech birthing center? I DON’T KNOW. I watched the first episode last night, and I will be honest with you, I had to look away for about 40% of it.
I was ten years old when I got my first period. I had said period for 3 months straight. It was our male family doctor who did my first exam, and it hurt so badly that, terrified, in pain, and not understanding a single thing that was being done to me, I sobbed the entire way through. He basically told me to calm down and chill out. I was ten fucking years old, man. Have a little care, a little patience! How I’d love to go back in time and just punch that guy in the dick.
Anyway, thirty-seven years later, every cervical exam or pap smear is an absolute nightmare for me, and I am taken straight back to that day, feeling completely alone in the world, my body not my own, my pain a thing does apparently doesn’t really exist. Sitting home in my office now, my knees locked tightly together, even the thought of a speculum so shiny you can see your pores in it makes me feel like fainting dead away.
I really wanted to watch Rachel Weisz in this duo role of brilliant but menacing twins, but I don’t think I can go back for more. I have two dear friends that have been recommending to me a show called Deadloch for the past few months, it looks like a sort of noir-mystery-comedy, which I have also heard referenced as “Broadchurch, but make it funny.”
So I am peacing out on Dead Ringers and headed over to Deadloch and I am not looking back. Life is too short to torture myself!
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