Episode from the podcastWhy Are Dads?

Plague, abandonment and Roy Cohn in Angels in America

Released Wednesday, 21st October 2020
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Angels in America is about plague in the Reagan 80s but could it be possible that there are some daddy issues to dissect in a work about a people abandoned by God? Join Sarah, Alex and Emma as they talk Angels, Roy Cohn and Cohn protege young Donald Trump.

We watched the Mike Nichols adaptation of Tony Kushner’s 1991 play about AIDS and homosexuality in the 1980s. Big, big dad themes.

It follows the lives of two couples, one gay and one straight-ish.

Louis and Prior are our gay couple, and Louis leaves Prior after he is diagnosed with AIDS. And it follows the lives of Joe and Harper Pitt, and Joe’s mom Hannah. They are Mormons having relocated to New York for Joe’s career, and Joe, it turns out, is closeted. Joe works at the law office of Roy Cohn, the McCarthyist lawyer and power broker—also closeted—and we see Cohn struggle through his diagnosis and reconciling his own mortality.

Our conversation focuses primarily on Louis, who leaves Prior in the face of his diagnosis, and Cohn, who we wanted to talk about because Donald Trump was, for a brief period anyway, a Cohn protege and really it seems like as character, morality and philosophy go, he made quite an impact on a young Trump. We will also mention Belize, a gay man who is friends with Louis and Prior, and comes to find himself in the often awkward position of being Roy Cohn’s nurse. He is played deliciously by Jeffrey Wright.

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Episode Details

1h 13m 12s

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