Gigi Levangie Grazer is a Hollywood insider who writes clever, sharply observed novels about the promised land of big money and bigger egos.A relentless satirist, Grazer doesn’t cut anyone — herself included — any slack. And she delights in brushing shoulders with the grasping, self-absorbed types who are part of the entertainment capital and her work.”The Starter Wife,” her 2005 best-seller is a sexy, savvy, and wickedly funny novel, and is the basis of a six-part miniseries that debuted Thursday on USA Network. It runs through June 30.
There are starter jobs, starter cars, starter houses, and then there are starter wives. Debra Messing (“Will & Grace”) stars as a studio boss’ wife who is abruptly edited out for a younger woman when her husband, Kenny, dumps her by cell phone, and, in turn, is shunned by her social circle. Lose your status, lose your life, Molly Kagan learns — and maybe find yourself.
Though her nine-year role as the wife of a semifamous Hollywood studio executive often left her dry and she never fully embraced the “status” (according to Kenny), Molly has grown accustomed to the unique privileges afforded by Tinseltown’s brand of power and wealth: reservations at Spago on a Friday night; beauty treatments; line-jumping at Disneyland with her daughter and Ugg-wearing celebrity offspring. And despite the fact she had consented to name their daughter Jaden in a (failed) attempt to lure Will Smith to one of Kenny’s productions,Molly believed she and Kenny were different from other Hollywood couples. She never thought she’d be a starter wife. But now that her marriage is over, her phone isn’t ringing, her mailbox is empty, and it’s only through a faux pas by her world-class florist that she learns her husband has upgraded: Kenny is dating a pop tartlet.
With images of Kenny’s ‘tween queen everywhere she turns, Molly seeks refuge at her best friend’s Malibu mansion for some much-needed divorce therapy. Soon she’s associating with all the wrong people, including a mysterious hunk who saves her from drowning, the security guard at her gated community, and — God forbid — Kenny’s boss, one of Hollywood’s better-known Lotharios.
With her signature wit, sassy style, and cameos of the rich and famous — and wannabe rich and famous — Gigi Grazer tackles the most delicious and dastardly details of a divorce and recovery, Hollywood style.
*Note: The novel is far more cynical and darker than the series, some characters names as well as their occupations have been changed from their original, but the series has received approval and is in fact closely worked with in screentwriting with the author. Both are well worth investing their time on for a little girl time.*