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Katey Sagal Tried To Give Al and Peg Bundy "Sexual Energy"

Illustration for article titled Katey Sagal Tried To Give Al and Peg Bundy Sexual Energy

Sons of Anarchy actress Katey Sagal, known also as Peg of Married With Children, the voice of Futurama's Leela, Personal Hero and awesome imaginary three-mimosa brunch mentor, told Howard Stern that Al Bundy's wife was originally written as much of a schlubby nebbish as he was. However, Sagal put the kibosh on that, which is how the big-haired chain-smoking Peggy we know was created.

"When that character was shown to me, she was written to be very sloppy. She was supposed to be like this woman who never took care of herself and kind of was a couch potato. And I read the script and my take on it was, I thought there needed to be some sort of sexual energy between her and Al Bundy, because how could you talk to each other so horribly if something didn't happen that was wonderful also - even though he was always bemoaning that aspect of their relationship. So it was my idea to doll her up. I thought she should look sexy. … So that was really my input to the writing, which I ultimately think made it a little more real and not so difficult to take. Because they were pretty tough on each other, those two."

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Of course, Schlubby Husband/Hot Wife is de rigeur for sitcoms these days; now, seeing the two-married-schlubs concept would actually be a novelty.

As for the conservative backlash to Married With Children—which was originally broadcast on Fox, by the way—Sagal divulged her personal response (one she still undoubtedly has to grapple with while portraying Gemma on FX's Sons of Anarchy, a character who once pulled a gun on a baby). "[Biker culture] a very misogynistic culture and I say that with all due respect."

"I always had a struggle, which I still do, when you're playing a character and it's not necessarily your morals or your values. You're playing a character, but the way the media will sometimes ask you if these are your opinions, you know - they make you responsible for that, and I take issue with it because I don't believe in censorship. Married with Children was racy. It was sexist. It was a lot of things, but mostly it was funny."

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'Katey Sagal, Holding Court On 'Sons Of Anarchy' [NPR]

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DISCUSSION

Peggy Bundy was my definition of "hot" when I was a child. Her and Nanny Fine. I think it's the hair combined with all the aimal print, and the take-no-bullshit attitude. I'm glad I grew up with those two instead of whoever player the blonde wife with Stockholm-syndrome on "According to Jim", or the harpy on "Raymond".