Brought to you from mst3k, another educational short (about 10 minutes) demonstrating the proper attitude towards, and behavior at, nightly dinner with one’s family.
My favorite sequence:
Narrator: “First of all, Daughter has changed from school clothes to something more festive.
I know I certainly put on my Sunday best before Hanna and I sit down to supper. Also, it’s creepy that all the characters are referred to by their generic member-of-the-family label, not actual names.
“Dressing a little makes her feel — and consequently look — more charming.”
because it’s all about performance, girls! remember that!
“Mother too changes from her daytime clothes. The women of this family seem to feel that they owe it to the men of the family to look relaxed, rested, and attractive at dinner time.”
In the words of Mike & Co: “So they’re unsuspecting when they kill them!”
aside from the fact it’s about women performing for men, I love the way the emphasis is on appearance: it’s important to “look” relaxed, rested, and attractive . . . never mind that Mother and Daughter are the ones preparing and serving the entire meal!
The whole film, in fact, emphasized the performance of an ideal 1950s family, with the suppression of unpleasant news and discord in favor of harmony and surface-level conversation. The narrator’s script keeps emphasizing this point, as if he’s just begging for us to wonder what evils are lurking in the shadows, unspoken.
. . . “Everyone wants to flee this seething cauldron of angst!”