News of the incredibly sad passing of Dixie Carter immediately took me back the late ’80s/early ’90s and watching Designing Women episodes with my mom. In other words, mother and gay son bonding at its finest! Carter, of course, played Julia Sugarbaker, the elegant but hotheaded owner of Sugarbaker Designs. If you were an avid viewer of Women, you know that Julia losing her temper in an episode was as safe a bet as Delta Burke’s Suzanne Sugarbaker saying something incredibly offensive. I mean, the other characters actually referred to Julia as “The Terminator.” Carter’s performance was strong, sassy, and deliciously Southern. Here are my picks for her five best Designing Women moments. But of course feel free to share your own favorite Carter/Women moments in the comments section.
1.) In probably her most famous dressing down ever in the history of the show, Carter’s Julia completely tears into a former beauty pageant winner who’s been trash-talking her sister Suzanne.
2.) Trapped in jury duty, Julia unleashes her frustration on her fellow jurors. Genius detail of ripping her jurors on “eating baskets of fried cheese” and enjoying staying at some dingy motel.
3.) When Mary Jo (Annie Potts) takes in her old art teacher who’s escaped from her nursing home, Julia is forced to take in the elderly woman’s pal. Things do not go well. Watch and marvel at Carter’s delivery. Deeeelicious.
4.) The Sugarbaker design team are guests on the cable access talk show of loony Bernice Clifton (Alice Ghostley) and are mistaken for high-end prostitutes. My favorite line: “If you do not correct this, I am going to personally pick you up and throw you across the room.” I just laughed out loud again.
5.) When Sugarbakers is hired to decorate the homes of a man’s wife and mistress, Julia has difficulty keeping her feelings to herself (“I find you rude, lazy, horny and dumb”).
What do you think, PopWatchers? What classic moments have I missed?