Happily Divorced?


The famed 90’s sitcom “The Nanny” was not based on the tumultuous life’s of its creators, Fran Drescher and Peter Marc Jacobson. But with “Happily Divorced”, their new sitcom on TV Land, they give viewers an in-depth look into their personal lives. Extremely in-depth.

“Happily Divorced” is based on Drescher and Jacobson’s 18-year-long marriage and its subsequent end, with Peter telling Fran that he’s gay after their divorce. With that being said, the show is not a complete compilation of exact facts of their marriage, but rather a comical reflection. Fran is known for her signature nasal voice and her ability to make light of seemingly any devastating situation, which in this case is her real life.

Fran and Peter’s divorce was back in 1999, so in an effort to keep up the show accurate, it addresses LGBT struggles and issues. The show has themes of love, friendship, relationships and achieving happiness in your fifties. Even though they’re divorced, Peter and Fran still live together due to the poor economy. This creates tension when they both start dating other people, and Peter becomes quite a bother to one of Fran’s new boyfriends, Elliot. Peter is played by John Michael Higgins, who is equally as funny as Fran so the two fit very well. Tichina Arnold who also is married to Rico Hines, St. John’s own assistant basketball coach, plays Fran’s best friend, Judi. Their chemistry is extremely believable for two girls who are supposed to have been friends since grade school back in Queens. Between the rest of the castings, the sets, the screenwriting, and Fran’s natural charisma and generally dramatic and passionate character, the show is a funny, feel-good show.

Though, themes of loneliness and need for love have always been a major theme in every show Fran has ever starred in and produced. “The Nanny,” “Living With Fran,” and now “Happily Divorced,” all deal with deeper-rooted emotions, mostly related to love and relationships due to some difficult events from her past. In 1985 an intruder raped her at gunpoint and in 2000 she found out she had uterine cancer and has since defeated the disease. With such despair in her past, she may find her comedic roles therapeutic, and “Happily Divorced” is no different.

“Happily Divorced” is all about making the best of any difficult situation, and maybe even giving in to a little comedic relief. Having gone through real struggles in her life, perhaps there’s something to be said and learned about Drescher’s optimism and her way of using laughter as a silver lining.