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Playing With / White-Dwarf Starlet

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Basic Trope: A female character who was a great star in the past and believes that she still is.

  • Straight: Alice is an aging actress who lives in her run-down mansion with relics of her Glory Days and ragged Outdated Outfits.
  • Exaggerated: Alice never talks about anything but her past and acts like she is still in business in public, regardless of who's watching or listening.
  • Downplayed: Alice still has trouble finding work, but doesn't behave erratically.
  • Justified:
    • Alice lives in a time or place when it is hard for female performers to find work after a certain age.
    • Because of her most famous role in her Glory Days, Alice has been typecasted to the point that she can't be hired for anything else.
  • Inverted:
    • Because she's young, Alice can't find work as a performer since only older women are accepted.
    • Alice was slightly unhinged and not that famous in her younger years, but as time passed, her films became more popular, ensuring her more success in her later years.
  • Subverted:
    • While she is old, Alice should still be able to find work. She quit on purpose.
    • Alice is no longer in showbusiness per se, but she is the head of the performing arts department at a local High School, college, or university.
  • Doubly Subverted:
    • However, she realized that she made a mistake and now is convinced that she can be re-hired for one last show.
    • Advertisement:
    • She really pushes her students (to the point of coming across as a Sadist Teacher), and makes it clear that she believes it's not really their show but hers. She sees the stage as a chance to relive her Glory Days.
  • Parodied: All actresses are dismissed as soon as they hit old age and turn half-mad, regardless of how they were before.
  • Zig-Zagged: Alice, who was popular as a young woman, has become old and is living off of her old fame.
  • Averted: When she is an older woman, Alice has no trouble finding work.
  • Enforced: Hollywood Old.
  • Lampshaded: "I'll bet that child star ends up living in her mansion with nothing but her old movies in sixty years, give or take a few."
  • Invoked: A director deliberately looks for old washed-up actresses to work on his movie, since they're so desperate they'll take any role that they can get.
  • Advertisement:
  • Exploited: Alice's studio, to punish her for her attitude on-set, fires her in her old age in a cruel attempt to turn her into a deranged starlet.
  • Defied:
    • Alice finds a new job in another field to avoid becoming washed-up.
    • Alice accepts that she's had her fifteen minutes of fame, and her time is up. She gracefully leaves show-business, goes Back to School, and leads a quiet, unassuming life outside of the public eye.
  • Discussed:
    Bob: Aren't there any jobs for old female performers?
    Charles: Of course not! Who needs actresses that no longer look like nubile porn stars anyway?
  • Conversed:
    Bob: What happened to her?
    Charles: She was an actress. Add fifty years, and now she's old and crazy.
  • Deconstructed: A long time ago, Alice was a famous actress. When she discovers that she can no longer find work as easily, she holes up in her mansion and becomes increasingly deluded, convinced that she will be contacted for one last film. This gives her a reputation as so eccentric and deranged that even directors who would have otherwise taken pity on Alice won't hire her. Even her friends, unable to reason with her, leave.
  • Reconstructed: Alice seems crazed to most people, but Alice's determination gets the attention of a director who is willing to use her in a film, rejuvenating her career.
  • Played For Laughs: Alice, too old to be accepted as an entertainer, visits a bar inhabited solely by aged, faded actresses and singers.
  • Played For Drama: The story is of Alice's fall and how her delusions both ruined her life and her career, as her misguided view that she could be a star keeps her from seeking work anywhere else and alienates everyone around her. However, her last hope is the only thing keeping her from going completely insane.
  • Intended Audience Reaction: Alice's career and her following derangement reveals the Double Standard behind abandoning female entertainers when they age.

I may be old, but I've still got one last show in me yet...

Example of: