Theme of the Month: Walk on the Wild Side
Star of the Month: Jane Fonda
Now that August, the summer month which always goes the fastest, has arrived, I’m finally to that
unfailingly depressing point where I’m counting down the days until real life begins again, obsessively trying to figure out how many weekends I have left before they’re going to start bookending school days. Much as I despise the idea of having to both learn and have actual responsibilities, the stakes heightened and pressures now more unfathomably high than ever, I’m looking forward to having a substantial routine again. To catching up with the friends who’ve so painfully been spread around the country for the summer. To reacquainting myself with resident advising. To the new challenges that might come up with my major and my other academic endeavors.
I hope to take it all in with a take-no-prisoners attitude once September makes way. Thinking about August on Peterson Reviews, I pondered which actor or actress of the month who could best represent a sense of palatable confidence that could inspire me to get to that place. So when the new season of You Must Remember This, my favorite podcast, announced that the subjects of the current series would be actresses Jean Seberg and Jane Fonda, who are strikingly similar despite immediate misgivings, I was reminded just how much I admire the inimitable Fonda.
Though she’s a divisive public figure, with some of her activism marred by controversy, Fonda is the kind of screen personality who can instantaneously overwhelm you with her presence. Her performances rumble with a sort of quiet intensity, her complicated, melodramatic personal life often being reflected in her work. Because she’s so hypnotic, and feels so tangible in comparison to other actresses of the era, you believe you can do anything when you watch Fonda.
To see a woman so skilled at her craft (and who was so conscientious of making an impact on the world outside of the entertainment industry) reminds one that you never have to be defined by a single aspect of your life. You can be passionate toward a wide array of interests and excel at her, and Fonda represents a person who’s never been afraid to step outside her comfort zone and be willing to learn from their missteps. She’s always walked on the wild side, for better or worse, and in my life is it important to me that I try to be as curious, open-minded, and courageous as I possibly can be.
And since this is probably the last month wherein the website will be my primary focus in terms of my day to day routine, I might as well spend it in the company of an actress who I find effortlessly exciting, Fortunately, she's backed by an accessible albeit masterpiece-ridden filmography. I’m looking forward to sharing which new hidden gems, underdogs, and forgotten classics I uncover this August. Happy watching, and happy reading!