From the diary: “March 31, 1985
“Am reading Consenting Adult by Laura Z. Hobson who also wrote Gentleman’s Agreement."
The previous week I’d watched the movie adaptation of Gentleman’s Agreement. I wrote, “It wasn’t bad. Anti-anti-semitism. They did their propaganda better than Making Love. Movie was made in ’47. … I had a hard time [with aspects of the movie]. Even considering the era … the women were very subservient, no blacks, no other visible ethnic groups. Main character was waited on by women hand-and-foot. I’d rather they’d made a movie like Anne Frank with Jews running into anti-semitism in daily life. Instead they make people into an ‘issue.’ The message is the story. That’s propaganda.” The story is an argument, the characters merely props to illustrate points. I’d seen Making Love on TV not long before and was hoping I’d enjoy it. I remember wanting to see it in the theater but not having the nerve. At the time I had no idea how much they cut it for broadcast – the men making love did not make it to TV, just the talk about it, and all so earnest. I’m curious to see an unchopped-up version of Making Love. I was never hot for Harry Hamlin but what the heck.
Consenting Adult was also made into a movie. For TV. Starring Mary Tyler Moore as the mother. The story is about the mother. Her grown son comes out to her and she has to figure out how to cope with it. I think the story is based on author Hobson’s own experience. It’s a woman-coping story. Of course she has a hard time with it at first. Lots of what-did-I-do-wrong and you-can-change-can’t-you, followed by mother overcoming her shame & revulsion to see things from her child’s point of view, then understanding, compassion, and, ultimately, loving acceptance. This synopsis suggests I remember more about the book than I do. It’s an examplar of the coming out genre, parental subset.