The Rules Of Defense (And Why I’m Breaking Them Today)

Shenanigans are afoot!

Shenanigans are afoot!

For many years, I have been told that I cannot use stories about certain people, as told by others, in building a case for why the allegations of Rich’s Sweethearts make no sense. In most instances, I do tend to agree. One cannot always get a full, clear picture of another person based solely on the experiences of other people. It is best to judge for yourself. Sadly, we can’t. It’s something I’ve definitely had to come to terms with, over the last 10 months. The best one can do is thoroughly research, take in all sides, and verify information provided.

There’s this nagging inside of me, though, that is terribly annoyed that the folks of the MacEddy club who always, and I mean always shot what I thought were logical arguments down because they had nothing to do with Jeanette or Nelson are now doing the very thing I was told was off the table. I know I have some new readers, ones I have never gone off on venting rants to, so I’d like to take today to break the “rules of defense.”

The above video is TCM’s Private Screenings interview with Ann Miller. I’ve set it to start playing just as she begins to tell the story of being hired by MGM. It is alleged that Jeanette MacDonald was so powerless in her own love life because Louis B. Mayer was obsessed with her and wanted her for himself. He would stop at nothing to ruin her, should she marry Nelson Eddy. Let’s take Annie’s story, as an example of the crazy, obscene “vindictiveness” of Mr. Mayer. While working for Columbia and entertaining the idea of quitting show business to be a housewife, Ann Miller was taken out dancing, often, by Mr. Mayer. Her mother was always in attendance, but after a while, Mr. Mayer’s intentions were laid out- while Annie thought of him as a sort of father figure, who should be falling in love with her mother, Mr. Mayer was falling for her. He asked her to marry him. She refused him, and he went home and took a bunch of sleeping pills.

Legend has it that Annie only got her MGM contract because of Mr. Mayer’s attraction to her, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. The thing is, though, that she had quit the movies to marry Reese Milner. Sadly, he was terribly abusive and, in the final act of their marriage, pushed eight months pregnant Annie down the stairs, breaking her back and killing their child. When Easter Parade opened up, she had to audition. Bless Arthur Freed, though, because he made sure she got the job, which led to her long term contract.

Now, where was Mr. Mayer, this whole time? Nowhere. Hiding in corners. Avoiding her. If it is so proven and factual and evidenced that he even had the power to single handedly ruin someone, and he would have ruined Jeanette MacDonald for crossing him, why didn’t he ruin Annie? It’s a very similar story as the one that has been created, about Jeanette. Mr. Mayer was so in love with Ann Miller that he asked for her hand, in marriage. Not only did she pretty much laugh in his face and tell him that he was more her mother’s speed, she married someone else and got badly, horrifically abused. Isn’t this what the Louis B. Mayer of Sweethearts was so obsessed with, in regard to Jeanette? But he didn’t ruin Annie. Hell, he wouldn’t even look at her. His studio employed her, though, and she went on to make what have proven to be her most memorable movies. So, tell me why I’m supposed to believe that he could have or would have ruined one of his top moneymakers for marrying the person that many of her fans wanted her to marry, anyway?

Then, of course, there is June Allyson, as well. Unfortunately I can’t find a link to her TCM Private Screenings, so you’ll just have to trust me, on this one. 🙂 In it, she discussed her marriage to Dick Powell with Robert Osborne. When she went to Mr. Mayer to tell him her intentions, he did actually make threats. He would ruin her. June left, still headstrong in her intention to marry Dick Powell, but turned back. She walked back up to Mr. Mayer and told him she had no one to give her away, at her wedding, and asked him to do it.

Ahem. June Allyson marries Dick Powell. Louis B. Mayer gives her away.

Ahem. June Allyson marries Dick Powell. Louis B. Mayer gives her away.

Like, he totally still fired her though, right? Noooooo! Date of marriage? August 19th, 1945. She made movies strictly for MGM, until 1953. I don’t know the specifics of her contract, off hand, but let’s just assume she had one. She had a job, anyway. At MGM. She outlasted Mr. Mayer, even.

Look at the cajones on this girl! Not only did she defy a direct order, she walked up to Mr. Mayer and got him to be in her wedding. In Her Wedding. So please, PLEASE tell me more about how Mr. Mayer would have ruined Jeanette for marrying Nelson Eddy!

At best the only person he ever may have made some half assed attempt to “protect” Jeanette from was Clark Gable. When she wanted him, for San Francisco, he just sat on his hands like “Girl, idk, I can’t force Gable to do anything.” Pure speculation, of course, so don’t quote me, but didn’t Gable do something crazy to a leading lady, in 1935? Isn’t that a thing? I don’t know. We’ll have to check on that one.

And that last part is for appropriating Loretta’s story as proof of your own. You don’t know the half of what that lady went through, and after taking some cheap shots at her, you’re really going to act like you have some sort of emotion about her being put through an ordeal? And you’re going to take what you think her entire ordeal was, and apply it to Jeanette? That’s seriously messed up. So enjoy my spin, my speculative little spin. It sure as hell makes a lot more sense than anything the MacEddy crew has ever come up with.






7 thoughts on “The Rules Of Defense (And Why I’m Breaking Them Today)

  1. Did Mayer try to stop Greer Garson from marrying Richard Ney? It seems like marrying her movie son would be much more objectionable to the head of the studio (who also allegedly had a crush on her) than Jeanette and Nelson. Yet Greer stayed on at MGM through 1954, eleven years after her marriage.

    I think money was the bottom line for Mayer. If an actor continued to make profitable films for MGM, their careers were safe.

    And don’t get me started on the so called blacklisting of Gene Raymond.

    • Right, because Mr. Mayer was so invested in a guy that was never under contract that he simultaneously moved mountains to protect him AND made sure Jeanette also “had to support him.” Khey. May I repeat my Gable theory just so I can say how much more sense it makes than anything MacEddy members and leaders have invented?

  2. When you’re peddling a book of fantasy fiction as ‘the truth’, you need a villain. In Sweethearts, we have three, count ’em THREE. There’s Gene Raymond, Ann Eddy and good old Louis Mayer. Poor guy was such a controlling devil that he actually took an overdose and subsequently hid from Ann Miller after she turned down his marriage proposal. So much for Mayer forbidding Jeanette to marry Nelson.

    But let’s discount that since you actually have Ann telling the story on video.

    As for the reference to what happened to Loretta Young when she was raped…well, I thought the same thing when I saw Rich use that tragic event in one of her articles. How dare you?

    And, please, Ms. Rich, do stop using YOUR book as a reference when you relate something on MacEddy. You see, we think logically..factually. Ever heard of that?? Let’s spell it out…We don’t believe a word you say (or write).

    Thanks, Kayla, for all you’re doing. Sorry about my snarky comment. But that’s how I’m feeling right now. I’m literally sick of the lies, innuendos, assumptions, manipulations and excuses…

    • No need to be sorry about snark. It’s pure BS that members of our side have been put through hell while the MacEdiots play victim. Poor, pitiful little liars, how awful we are to you for expecting you to abide by your own professed ideals.

  3. Using your own poorly-documented book as a source is most definitely circular reasoning: “J&N had a long-term affair because I said so in my book!”

  4. These comments are sarcastic..but oh, so true and equally hilarious!! I love the term ‘circular reasoning because her article on MacEddy today is most certainly going in circles. The more she tries to explain herself, the deeper she digs her own hole with that circular reasoning…..

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