Third Time's the Charm

After seducing Kelly Preston in Citizen Ruth and attempting to do the same to Teri Hatcher on Desperate Housewives, Swoosie Kurtz goes lesbian again with BFF Blythe Danner on Nurse Jackie.




I forgot you did that stint as the corrupt judge sending helpless adolescents off to juvie prison. That was frightening. You were so scary.That was totally frightening. She was some crazy, whacko whackjob, wasn't she?

Was it fun for you to dive into that type of role?God, it was so fun. I never played a character like that in my life. I said, "Oh my God, I've got to do this." I've never played anybody so irredeemably bad.

That character's sexual orientation aside, how do you think you became the go-to girl for playing lesbian?I don't really think I am. You've got to look at the whole picture. This is a small percentage and I think they just all happen to be close together, except for Citizen Ruth . I think it's less to do with me than it is to do with the surge of lesbian roles that have come up in the past two years. In mainstream television it's been pretty sparse, I would say… the lesbian landscape. I think it's just that there are more characters written that way now, which is great. I was in a piece of television history, which was Love, Sidney with Tony Randall, which was the first gay character in television. It didn't really pan out that way because all the affiliates started pulling out the minute they heard.

If I recall correctly, the show was finally really coded gay but not played openly.Yeah. He almost became just a happy bachelor, but at least Tony tried.

I'd love to hear a bit about being on the set of Nurse Jackie .It was just great. They shoot in Queens, which was heaven for me just to be in New York. It was one of those beautiful snowy days in New York. You know, Blythe and I have been friends for years…

You guest-starred on Huff with her.We worked together on Huff and long before that we knew each other. We had worked together. We're seen about town together. In New York we go to the theater together when we're both there. We work out together.

And now you're playing lesbian moms . We giggle about it all the time. Whose last name are we going to take? Is it going to be Mrs. Danner or Mr. Kurtz?

Have you tried hyphenating your names yet? That might be the way to go.Oh, we could hyphenate. That's an idea. I never thought of that.

That's when it helps to talk to a lesbian like me…[ Laughs ] Well, we decided that this couple on Nurse Jackie had many years ago picked out dining room furniture together. It's been a long relationship.

Tags: television