“People think it’s not based on reality, but in a way it is,” says Riki Lindhome as we chat via webcam (watch above) about her Comedy Central series “Another Period.” Lindhome and Natasha Leggero — who created, write and produce the series — star as the wealthy Bellacourt sisters, who strive for fame and status in 1902 Newport, Rhode Island. While this savagely funny satire is not based on reality in the strictest sense, it took plenty of research and historical perspective to bring it to life.
“For example, our first episode this season was about Harriet Tubman,” Lindhome explains. “We have her as this branding expert; she’s the only face of the Underground Railroad because she knew how to get her name out there — that’s not true, but it’s conceivable. We try to have truth mixed in and then wonder what could have happened.” There was also a surprising amount of truth in a first-season episode where Sigmund Freud attempts to cure females of hysteria by masturbating them: “We don’t even have to do that much imagining on some things like that.”
In addition to the show’s historical perspective, it also has modern relevance. “In 1902 the economic disparity in this country was the biggest it’s ever been because there were no antitrust laws and no income tax and now is the only time in history that’s almost as close as that.” And in addition to the common thread of income inequality, there was also the temptations of celebrity. “People have always wanted to be famous. They were the same as us: there were classy people, and there were tacky people.” Suffice it to say, the Bellacourts aren’t the classy ones.
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