If you're looking for a woman who made it in TV with a talent other than vadge-flashing and car-crashing, we beg you to set your TiVo for the PBS special "Carol Burnett: A Woman of Character" on Monday night. Because Carol Burnett rocks. Parents: Set your daughters up with a little Carol Burnett footage, and she'll aspire to the perfect pratfall, not the perfect amateur sex tape. Burnett hit the big time when, as an unknown, she starred on Broadway in the musical Once Upon a Mattress: A fractured fairytale about a princess named Fred who swims in moats and can bench-press the prince. Yeah, there's a wedding at the end, but it's on Fred's terms. Burnett stole the show as Princess Fred, a star is born, and little girls everywhere were given an example that you can be loud and goofy and silly and even a little dirty (in a swimming the moat way, not in an Xtina way) and still get the prince — if getting the prince is what you want.
Burnett's success in Mattress ultimately yielded two important things: a life-long friendship and mentorship with Lucille Ball (We love Lucy just as much as we love Carol! The woman could shove chocolate off of a conveyor belt into her mouth and still look glamorous!) and a TV deal. The Carol Burnett Show is easily the greatest variety show of all time. Week after week, Burnett continued to prove to the entertainment community that variety shows were not best helmed by men. Monday night's special focuses on her show and Burnett's genius. We bet if little girls would watch this special, see how cool and funny a woman can be, a new generation of curtain-wearing Starlet O'Haras will be born.
Burnett's Gold [WSJ]