Feud, Nostalgia, and the Impossibility of Perfect Imitation

If you’ve been watching FX’s Feud, as I have, you’ve either been seduced and dazzled by its depiction of its period in both America and in Hollywood, as well as the central performances given by Susan Sarandon and Jessica Lange; or you’ve been put off by the cheapness of Ryan Murphy’s recreation of the era and its people. Put me under the latter category. In fairness to Murphy, and to anyone nutty enough to try to pull off the feat of imitating a real time, a real place, real people, and real art, Feud is a difficult act to pull off, but that doesn’t at all change one simple truth, which is that he doesn’t. 

I put down some words to articulate my frustrations with Feud over at Paste Magazine, my usual stomping ground.

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