1950 America’s Favorite Redhead

Let’s pretend it’s still Friday… ;)

Before I knew anything about comedy or the entertainment business, I knew that one of my grandma’s absolute favorite funny ladies from the 1950’s was Lucille Ball. She also became one of my favorites at a young age, thanks to Nick at Nite’s 1990’s reruns. I know her best from I Love Lucy (which ran from 1951 to 1957), but she also had two successful shows after that: The Lucy Show (1962-68) and Here’s Lucy (1968-74) in addition to many feature films and appearances on various other radio and TV programs.

I love that Lucille was relentless when it came to her career. There weren’t too many women doing the show business thing when she first started out. From pioneering herself into vaudeville, Broadway and Hollywood, to starting her own production company, she really paved the way for many women in entertainment.

Lucille Ball

Here’s a few of my favorite Lucy quotes:

“Love yourself first and everything else falls into line. You really have to love yourself to get anything done in this world.”

“Luck? I don’t know anything about luck. I’ve never banked on it and I’m afraid of people who do. Luck to me is something else: Hard work – and realizing what is opportunity and what isn’t.”

“I’d rather regret the things I’ve done than regret the things I haven’t done.”

The Queens of Comedy

Amy + TinaI’m not going to beat a dead horse with this one. We all know that Amy Poehler and Tina Fey are NOT ONLY two amazingly talented pioneers in the comedy biz BUT ALSO very progressive trailblazers for feminism, the entertainment world aside.

Like Amy, Tina’s roots are with Second City in Chicago. She began writing for SNL in 1997 and became the show’s head writer (first ever female) two years later. She didn’t begin acting on the show until 2000, and departed just six years after to create her own little show you may or may not have heard of, 30 Rock. In 2011, she released Bossypants, her award-winning autobiographical book that details how to get the job done while leaving ’em in stitches.

After moving to New York in 1996, Amy cofounded the Upright Citizen’s Brigade Theatre in 1999. She joined the cast of SNL in 2001, and began co-hosting Weekend Update alongside Tina in 2004, as the first (and to date, only) time a duo of women served as news-anchors. In 2008, she started producing and starring in the best show in the world Parks and Recreation, which is [obviously] still on NBC. In her spare time, she motivates girls (and let’s be real, also grown-ass women/gays) in her YouTube Series, Smart Girls. Also, she’s a recently separated mom of two, and my envy of her children knows no bounds.

Tina and Amy are great on their own, but there’s truly nothing like it when they’re working/performing together. From the Palin/Clinton sketches of 2008, to hosting the Golden Globes earlier this year, these two are at their best when they’re playing off of each other. And these ladies are not just frontrunners in the category of funny females, they are groundbreakers in the vast realm of comedy as a whole.

We all have a lot of reasons to like these two women – they’re both hilarious, witty, type-A, do-it-yourself, fearless leaders in all projects they take on. But personally, I think my very favorite reason that makes me so impassioned to root for their success is that they are (and always have been) both so supportive of each other in a world that can be so cut-throat. If you know anything about breaking into the comedy industry as a female, it’s VERY competitive and not-so-friendly. The fact that Amy and Tina were each other’s cheerleaders from the forefront makes me feel like I can truly support and relate to these iconic women. One day, it’s my hope and dream to be able to tell that to them in person. For now, I’m waiting with everyone else to watch them co-present Carol Burnett with the Mark Twain Prize for American Humor and whatever else they have up their sleeves.