Despite professing through song that she was done with it, Mary J. loves drama, at least of the sartorial variety. She also seems drawn to sheers. This delivers both, thanks to a huge neck bow, puffy sleeves, and a frosty aqua color, all of which have a very Aaron Speling Nighttime Soap quality to them. The lining issue mostly presents a problem because it’s so distracting. The spots where we see her underpinnings and we don’t, or the concern that we’re seeing crotch even if we aren’t, distracts my eye and disrupts the flow. I don’t get why more designers don’t agree with that. Sometimes, I’ll grant you, a sheer piece can work, but I don’t think this is one of those moments. At least, not for me; it might be for you. She DOES look otherwise totally arresting, so that’s not nothing.

Mary J. won the Breakthrough Performance award in Palm Springs for her work in Mudbound – interestingly, the Supporting Actress race (Mary J., Allison Janney, Laurie Metcalf, Holly Hunter, Hong Chou in the otherwise largely reviled Downsizing, and Octavia Spencer, in various combinations) has felt especially competitive this year — and she was presented it by GFY fave Common.

29th Annual International Film Festival - Show, Palm Springs, USA - 02 Jan 2018

COMMON: Mary J., you really deserve this… candied orange peel.

MJB: Thanks. I worked super hard for this… tribute to pasta.

COMMON: And I’m really honored to be the one to hand you this… extremely confusing curly straw.

MJB: I can’t wait to figure out where I’m gonna put my… extremely artistic rendering of a soda bottle exploding with Fanta.

COMMON: I think I’d choose your mantel for this… abstract version of a plant breaking through the green –

MJB: Okay stop. What in the HELL IS THIS THING, COMMON.


MJB: Isn’t it written on the card or something?

COMMON: Don’t they give you some kind of Nominee Cliff’s Notes or something?

MJB: The only thing I can think of right now is for us to take a Prom photo with it.

Palm Springs International Film Festival Awards Gala, Press Room, USA - 02 Jan 2018

MJB: And now it’s like… an enormous glass wrist corsage.

COMMON: Congratulations on being Queen of the Citrus Prom.

MJB: I will treasure this overly narrow party hat.

COMMON: Let’s turn it upside down and do shots out of it.


[Photos: Broadimage/REX/Shutterstock, Rob Latour/REX/Shutterstock, Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP/REX/Shutterstock]