Holland Taylor has enjoyed a prolific career in television, film and on the stage that has spanned five decades. And many of the roles throughout her career “can be described as self-assured, strong, and sexually active,” points out Trish Bendix.

“While most women her age are relegated to playing sassy grandmas or overbearing mothers of adult children, Taylor joins contemporaries like Lily Tomlin and Jane Fonda in the ability to turn stereotypes on their heads and create fully-fleshed post-menopausal women who… do more than nag, parent, or serve as an out-of-touch elder,” says Bendix.

Perhaps best known for her Emmy-winning role as Judge Roberta Kittleson on The Practice, Taylor also frequently stole the scene as the “narcissistic bisexual Evelyn Harper” on Two and Half Men.

“It was a groundbreaker, so I got some personal pleasure forging and digging up new dirt. And it was complicated because she was a very, very good judge and very smart woman, and to play this combination of someone who also has a personal life — it gets difficult and challenging at the same time.”

Her latest role, says Bendix, in Stephen King’s new EPIX series, “Mr. Mercedes,” promises to be an eye-opening one, as well. In the first episode, for example, Ida shows a nude to her neighbor Bill and waits for his positive reaction. When she gets none, “she offers him sex, because she can see that he is in need, and she can be of service.”

“I just want characters that are real,” Taylor told Bendix. “I don’t want characters that are formulaic or cliche. And too often, roles for women are.”

Read more at Broadly

 

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