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Hollywood Romantic ComedyStates of the Union, 1934-65$
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Kathrina Glitre

Print publication date: 2006

Print ISBN-13: 9780719070785

Published to Manchester Scholarship Online: July 2012

DOI: 10.7228/manchester/9780719070785.001.0001

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There must be a boy! Doris Day and Rock Hudson

There must be a boy! Doris Day and Rock Hudson

(p.159) 7 There must be a boy! Doris Day and Rock Hudson
Hollywood Romantic Comedy

Kathrina Glitre

Manchester University Press

This chapter discusses the films of Doris Day and Rock Hudson and their roles' social construction of normative gender and sexuality. The chapter is centrally concerned with the formation of the heterosexual couple in Pillow Talk. Day and Hudson only made three films together—Pillow Talk, Lover Come Back and Send Me No Flowers—and in one film they play a married couple. Although they form a heterosexual union in each film, the dynamics of the coupling are complicated by the presence of Tony Randall, who co-stars in all three. The films are very conscious of the cultural discourses around masculinity and sexuality and repeatedly place Hudson and Randall in queer positions. The progressive potential of their films lies in the films' interrogation of the ideology of normative gender and sexuality. Ultimately, this potential is limited because the queer possibilities are focused only on the male body, at the expense of the heterosexual couple's equality.

Keywords:   Doris Day, Rock Hudson, Pillow Talk, heterosexual, masculinity, sexuality

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