What If Tonya Harding Were Black?

13 January, 2018, 03:32 | Author: Christina Harvey
  • Golden discusses her daughter Tonya Harding on ABC News Truth and Lies The Tonya Harding Story

In an interview with Grazia magazine, she admitted: "I had lost my mind".

"I, Tonya" is amusing when it wants to be, poignant when it needs to be, and surprisingly effective in harnessing these deeper themes to a character who might otherwise be dismissed as a lightweight laughingstock.

Tonya Harding's two-hour special, Truth and Lies: The Tonya Harding Story, had no shortage of shocking moments when it aired on January 11.

Though the Tonya Harding biopic I, Tonya, has received critical acclaim and a number of awards nominations, Olympic ice skater and Harding's former competitor Nancy Kerrigan has neither seen the movie nor does she have any desire to do so. Her loyal agent/publicist Michael Rosenberg resigned today over Tonya's insistence that reporters be fined $25,000 if they ask her anything about the past. Working off a reality that is already pretty out there, I, Tonya presents a dramatic mock-u-mentary retelling of these real-life events, which leave eyebrows raised from start to finish.

Ryah The tragic thing about Tonya is I think she could have persevered past the personal stuff in her life, but it was the association's rejection that really got to her. The cast is rounded out with a mustachioed Sebastian Stan as Harding's impetuous ex-husband Jeff Gillooly and Allison Janney as her acid-tongued mother, LaVona Golden. "I sincerely wish her the best".




The principal crime of which Harding was convicted in the court of public opinion was not her involvement in the attack on Kerrigan. "I didn't abuse any of my children", Golden hit back in a rare interview with ABC News. Note that you won't hear the phrase "black trash" among the sorts of people who find Harding's life story amusing. Would the scene in which Margot Robbie's Harding speaks while the director makes sure we see the pile of dirty dishes piled up behind her leave you in stitches? "I don't know if it's because you're so exhausted when you're filming you're nearly delusional". Like, that's my role in this whole thing. (He has denied this and other abuse.) She said her mother threw a knife at her. "Spanked? Yes, spanked. Absolutely positively, you got to show them right from wrong". Brodesser-Akner is a writer whose work on damaging, sexist media narratives is some of the sharpest I've seen. There's no doubt that Harding was a victim of Gillooly's violent temper, and her eventual criminal sentence may have been a bit harsh, but I'm not convinced she was quite as innocent as the movie suggests.

Harding gained infamy in 1994 when her US figure-skating rival, Nancy Kerrigan, was clubbed on her right knee at a practice session for the USA championships. As a writer for the National Sports Daily, I covered the 1991 national championships when Harding landed a triple axel, and in 1993 I became lead sports columnist for the Oregonian.

In an extreme example of this psychological torture, a very young Tonya is forced to urinate on the ice after her mother won't let her take a bathroom break.

"I, Tonya" isn't the definitive screen biography of a fallen figure skater, just a really entertaining one. Robach asked. "Not a good one", Harding said.

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