FX recently released the first three parts of their nine-part series, “Mrs. America,” streaming now on Hulu. The show covers the movement to ratify the Equal Rights Amendment (ERA) and the fight one conservative woman led against it. It features an ensemble cast composed of Cate Blanchett, Uzo Aduba, Rose Byrne and Elizabeth Banks.
In the 1970s, the ERA was a proposed amendment that would grant equal rights to all Americans regardless of their sex. Even though an amendment like this would be mostly celebrated and encouraged in today’s world, America was not quite ready for this movement at the time and it struck up a lot of debate. “Mrs. America” covers this struggle for equality.
Each episode focuses on the women during the era such as Phyllis Schlafly and a handful of well known second-wave feminists. The FX show allows viewers to see through the eyes of women like Schlafly, Gloria Steinem, and Shirley Chisholm, who pushed the boundaries of that time and fought for women’s rights during the 1970s.
Through the eyes of these well-known women, we are able to see the 1970s political landscape change as they know it. The show portrays the fight for equality and the struggle for women’s voices to be heard in politics.
The first episode focuses on Schlafly, a historical figure known for her conservative social and political views that opposed feminism. Played by Blanchett, Schlafly is not the hero of this story, but plays a big role in the debate of the ratification of the ERA.
The second episode covers Steinem (Byrne). Steinem is a feminist and political activist, and one of the leaders of the ERA. She is on a mission to establish more equality for both sexes in the 70s.
Chisholm (Aduba), is the focus of the final episode. Chisholm is best known for being the first black congresswoman in 1968, and represented New York State in the U.S House of Representatives for seven terms. Her episode focuses on her 1972 run for president.
“Mrs. America” is an intriguing show that showcases the early struggles women had to fight against for equality.
This show sparks a lot of reflection of how far women have come and celebrating the women who fought the hard battles to get us where we are today. It is rather liberating to see such powerhouses’ portrayal of historical women who were doing their best to have their voices heard in a time where not even all women could stand together.