Amazon.com: Customer Reviews: But Darling, I'm Your Auntie Mame!: The Amazing History of the World's Favorite Madcap Aunt
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on August 22, 1998
I have read a few unnecessarily harsh words about Jordan's book recently, so I sat down with published version of "But Darling, I'm Your Auntie Mame." Upon re-reading the book--I stick by the opinion I had on reading the original manuscript:
"'But Darling, I'm Your Auntie Mame' is a cover-to-cover delight. Not only a comprehensive history of a beloved character, but an insightful, often surprising, always entertaining story of the towering talents that have made Mame - in her many incarnations - this century's favorite daffy aunt.
"Jordan's obvious love of his subject matter rewards readers interested in serious research, behind-the-scenes trivia, eyewitness reports, celebrity anecdote, and lucid commentary. The result is a one-of-a-kind portrait of a one-of-a-kind woman, the dozens of talented women who have played her, and the hundreds of creative people to be found at the heart of our dear Auntie Mame."
Jeff Kurtti, author, The Great Movie Musical Trivia Book Since the World Began: Walt Disney World-The First 25 Years The Art of The Little Mermaid The Art of Mulan
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on July 29, 1998
I remember with awe struck delight, the first time I ever saw Rosalind Russell as Auntie Mame. How I wanted an Aunt like that. Reading Richard Tyler Jordan's book added to the banquet that has become Auntie Mame. As if there weren't enough catty one-liners in the movie, Richard Tyler Jordan adds the behind the scenes ones as well. If you love Roz, Angela, Bea and/or Lucy, you want to read this book. Even if you just love the character of Mame, you will not be disappointed.
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on January 27, 2000
Richard Tyler Jordan takes the saga of Patrick Dennis' now-world-famous character of Mame Dennis from the moment the producers of the original Broadway triumph latched onto the idea of making a book into a play and take it through every major incarnation -- book to play to movie to musical to movie. Jordan's telling of these delightful stories are more terrific for his superb sense of pacing and tact. He tells those details about Broadway productions and theatre history that will pleasure the best readers of this book -- the fans and theatre-philes of the world. I read this from cover to cover in one sitting, and found myself roaring with laughter or breathless with anticipation about the casting of Angela Lansbury as Mame. Obviously, I knew the ending, but it is a tribute to Jordan's writing and extraordinary research that makes such a story filled with the best kind of tension! I believe it is clear that the real Auntie Mame -- Patrick Dennis aka Edward Everett Tanner, III, himself -- would have loved this book. What a triumph of theatre history writing where you feel like you had a front-row seat for every important performance!
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on July 11, 1998
Richard Tyler Jordan has chronicled, with great style, eloquence, and obvious affection, the fascinating evolution of Patrick Dennis's fictional character into the larger-than-life status of legend. "Mame" cuts a wide swath as she leaves her mark on the gifted actresses, songwriters, composers, screenwriters, playwrights, producers, directors, and supporting casts of her various stage and screen incarnations. The discerning reader will find a thread of mystery with its subtle resolution. Every reader should find the journey between this book's covers both delightful and enlightening. "But Darling, I'm Your Auntie Mame!" would be an appropriate gift for your most intellectual friend, your most fun-loving friend, someone who reads one book a year, your feminist daughter, your therapist, or your own madcap aunt.
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on July 26, 1998
At last, a book that tells the history of my favorite fictional character Auntie Mame! This book, BUT DARLING, I'M YOUR AUNTIE MAME! is a treat for anyone who loves Mame... or Roz Russell, Angela Lansbury, Lucille Ball, Judy Garland, Eve Arden, Greer Garson or Susan Hayword. The author has included so much Mame minutia within his pages -- he "opens doors I never dreamed existed." This is definitely a book for anyone interested in the behind-the-scenes making of an icon of modern literature, theatre and film. I recommnd Richard Tyler Jordan's book. It would also make a great PBS documentary or A&E Biography.
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on October 8, 1998
Richard Jordan writes about a subject he loves and in so doing, makes us love Mame even more than we may have from the start. Years of dedicated and meticulous research went into this entertaining history of the book/play/movie/musical and the time spent reading it just flies by.
As a musical buff (if not a completely authoritative historian), I was fascinated to read so many interesting behind-the-scenes stories. And as an archivist at a major entertainment company, I fully appreciate the value in having certain long-standing rumors debunked.
This book definitely belongs on the shelf of any fan of the legend that is Mame.
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on September 17, 2007
This is a well written and interesting book that gives the reader an "insider's" view of the history of all of the varied productions, stage and screen, of both Auntie Mame and Mame. It's interesting to see the personalities and egos of the playwrights, the actors, producers, directors and choreographers interplay with the characteristics of the character herself. Auntie Mame always wins. She embraces those who are in tune with her and easily dispatches those who are not. Mame remains invincible.
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on October 21, 1999
Mr. Jordan passionatly and with much craft takes us on the journey of the story of Auntie Mame. There are several outstanding interviews with the players which brings the story to life. The book is a facinating look into the height of American Theater and gives much insight into the lives of those involved. Thanks to Mr. Jordan, this wonderful time in theater history will not be forgotten but will inspire a new generation of Mame lovers.
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on September 26, 1998
Rarely do I reread a book but Richard Jordan's Mame is so well writen and easy to read that I have found myself going through it again. Jordan is one of my favorite authors and no doubt has quite a future.If I could I would give it 6 stars
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HALL OF FAMEon August 23, 2007
I enjoyed this compendium of backstage lore, but other reviewers are correct in saying that Jordan provides little context for the phenomenon of AUNTIE MAME. But who cares about that really when you have all these wonderful stories of difficult people and the tantrums they throw to get their own way?

Sumner Locke Elliott, the playwright and novelist originally hired to adapt Patrick Dennis' 1955 novel to the stage, gives a chiseled portrait of the late Rosalind Russell, depicting her as a sort of sacred monster who made sure everything went her way. Russell was never a great star but she knew how to adapt her act for changing times, and turned from comedy to drama to musical to farce to suspense to religion, whatever paid the rent. Her efforts at drama were pretty feeble, she was no Nazimova that's for sure, but in the annals of high comedy she will always have a shining place due to the sheer intensity of her performances in HIS GIRL FRIDAY, THE WOMEN, and of course AUNTIE MAME.

Jordan shows us how Hollywood got it wrong, casting Lucy as Mame when the cognoscenti wanted Lansbury in the musical version of Dennis' play. After reading this book I felt sorry for Lucy for the first time in my life, for reading the savage reviews attacking her physical appearance is actually painful, as though all the critics in the world had turned into John Simon for this one occasion. Lucy was 61, is that really 15 or 20 years too old to play Auntie Mame? Why? Not that Lucy was any good, I'm not standing up for her, but no one deserves the venom she got for playing in that one movie, shooting herself in both feet for her arrogance and pride and vanity.

Jerry Herman wrote the foreword to this book, but could he really have read it? He comes off like a spoiled princess, scuttling plans for a TV remake of MAME with Bette Midler for no good reason, then lacing into a great screenwriter for daring to pen an adaptation of MAME with the temerity to cut two horrible Herman numbers (Saint Bridgette and That's How Young I Feel) which are, apparently, sacrosanct. Jerry Herman always seems so good natured and sweet, but now after reading this book I know he's a Teri-Hatcher style diva.
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