"Streetcar" in Pop Culture
May 5, 2016
The Tennessee Williams classic A Streetcar Named Desire, which was famously adapted in 1951 for the big screen, has been seen by millions on stages across the world. With many quotable lines and a timeless theme, it has appeared numerous times in subtle and not so subtle ways on the silver screen. Blanche’s most famous line “I have always depended on the kindness of strangers,” has been used in many popular television series such as M.A.S.H. and Saved by the Bell.
The Simpsons dedicated an entire episode to the American classic in an episode titled “A Streetcar Named Marge,” wherein Marge is cast in the starring role as Blanche DuBois. During her time in the production, Marge starts to see similarities between Homer and Stanley and becomes angered with him, just as Blanche does with Stanley in the play. While The Simpsons episode ends on a happier note than the play, many of the play's themes are conveyed throughout the episode with a dash of Simpsons’ humor.
Seinfeld referenced Streetcar in an episode where Elaine accidentally takes one too many muscle relaxers before going out to dinner. When meeting Jerry’s aunt Stella, Elaine does her best Stanley impersonation.
Modern Family has paid homage to this Tennessee Williams play in reference to the famously shouted words “Stelllllaaaa!” Gloria has lost her dog Stella and enlists the help of Cam to help locate her. While helping Gloria, Cam comes to the realization that he is like a modern day Stanley.
Portland Center Stage is committed to identifying & interrupting instances of racism & all forms of oppression, through the principles of inclusion, diversity, equity, & accessibility (IDEA).