For some men of a certain age, the sad news that Doris Day had died rekindled conflicted memories. You see, for those of us who first felt certain stirrings at about the time when we originally saw a bunch of Doris Day movies on TV, that thing about her relentlessly wholesome image was, well, laughable. OK, if the thought of pubescent American boys longing to commit all manner of sins with the lovely Miss Day is too much for you to take, you may be excused. Feel free to move on. It happened.
Beyond wholesome: When Doris Day was an unlikely sex symbol
Beyond wholesome: When Doris Day was an unlikely sex symbol | The Spokesman-Review
Doris Day was a major star during the s and 60s. Even now, many years after her final film and years since her last regular television appearances, the star's name retains currency: she is often invoked as shorthand for a kind of sexuality now felt outmoded, with virginity firmly maintained until marriage. Although this assumption is widespread, close attention to the facts of Day's own life challenges it, and the majority of her film roles also prove otherwise, with Day most frequently portraying a woman of maturely sexual desires. Redressing a surprisingly meagre body of work on Doris Day, this book investigates why the rigid view of Day's maintained virginity should have arisen and become so fixed to the star, even now. Taking a twofold approach, Tamar Jeffers McDonald both closely examines Day's film roles and performances and explores material from other popular media for the source of the virgin myth. Day featured continuously in public discourse, and media stories were often devoted to her personal life: it was widely known that she had been married three times and had a son.
Tomorrow, Doris Day turns The actress retired from show-business over three decades ago, and has been living as a virtual recluse for longer than that, but still exercises a powerful hold on the public imagination, particularly in America, where her memory is especially revered. Last year, the entertainment media got themselves in a flap when a rumour emerged that Day was about to make a comeback in a film directed by her friend and neighbour, Clint Eastwood. Everyone got pretty excited for about five minutes, till a spokesman for Day emerged to announce that the story was nonsense. But back in the s, Doris was huge, a talented and charming leading lady who sang like a dream and had a rare talent for comedy.
She was only 16, but Doris Kappelhoff didn't mince her words when trombonist Al Jorden asked her to accompany him to the cinema. Her mother, Alma, agreed. She didn't like the surly Jorden one bit.