Monday, 25 April 2011

Stephen: A Maid's Tale

"Stephen: A Maid's Tale" was a long running TV series that ran between 2040-2046 and was popular both with the by now well establised dominant female sex and the feminised male underclass.

It was a part comic and part dramatic production set in the Edwardian era and featuring all of the wonderful settings and costumes that were hallmarks of the period. Of course, it was not historically accurate as the male actors had to wear the dresses and corsetry of the period and assume traditionally feminine behaviours whilst the female actors wore trousers, bow ties and top hats and played the masculine roles. For this reason, the series was described by a new term, a "Fantasy Drama".

The central character was, unusually for a society where women had been the dominant sex for some years, a male maid called Stephen Hall. Stephen Hall, ably played by actor Nigel Rex, was a young teenage maid entering service for the first time and getting rather more than he bargained for!

Young Stephen, aged only sixteen and fresh out of school, had harboured ambitions of one day becoming a journalist, but his family's poverty had cruelly dashed his hopes and he had had to put aside his ambitions and instead put on his frilled cap and apron in order to support his family.

Stephen became the personal maid to the Hon. Trevor Tibbs-Buckley, a tiny boy of his own age who was obsessed with clothes and jewellery. He was very popular with the young ladies due to his tiny waist, his gorgeous gowns, delicate features and his innate femininity. It was Stephen's job to arrange liaisons between his master and his many suitors.

But Trevor's mother, the Countess Alexandra, who ruled her family with a rod of iron, wanted her son to remain a virgin until his wedding day, as befitted a young gentleman.

Trevor was equally determined to couple with a strong woman. But, in spite of his and Stephen's best efforts, the results of their scheming and plotting were invariably a hideous disaster and Trevor and his beau of the moment were discovered by the Countess, with unpleasant consequences for Trevor.

In one controversial episode, Stephen suggested that one of Trevor's suitors, a certain Lady Tabitha Foxworthy-Smythe, should disguise herself as a gentleman and pretend to be a chum of her amore'. Needless to say, Tabitha was most reluctant to put on the frivilous fripperies that attended the male sex and it took all of Stephen's powers of persuasion to persuade her to go along with his plan.

The escapade ended in the same way as all of Trevor and Stephen's other attempts to hoodwink the Countess, for the Countess saw through the deception immediately, and had Tabitha restored to her usual attire before having her ejected from the house.

The outrage generated by the plot of having a female adopt male clothing was considerable and was generally considered to be in very poor taste. Henceforth, no further stories featuring cross-dressing females was featured.

Although Trevor failed in his quest, Stephen had distractions of his own. For Lady Amanda, Trevor's younger sister and heiress to the earldom, had the hots for him! Amanda, a solidly built girl who could spend a day in the saddle, still had plenty of energy left to chase Stephen around, pin him to her bed and kiss him roughly before having her way with the pretty maid.

The Dowager Countess, an old woman in her eighties, was also enamoured of her grandson's pretty maid. The fact that she was confined to a wheelchair did not stop her from pinching Stephen's bottom or making him sit on her knee whilst she kissed and fondled him.

Stephen was also constantly caught in compromising and embaressing positions, such as ending up naked or only in his frilly underwear, or at the mercy of a domineering woman.

The other male characters were portrayed as submissive, docile creatures, paraded about by their dominant female partners in corsets, pretty frocks, big hats and dainty parasols. They were well schooled in traditionally feminine values, holding no opinions of their own, talking only of the latest fashions or of society gossip and not daring to contradict their wives.

The female characters were invariably played by the actresses as domineering, sexually aggressive and with a low opinion of the male of the species. They talked of business, politics and sports and they did not appreciate a mere male commenting on such weighty matters, which were the province of women.

The audience loved the gorgeous costumes and frothy, lacy underthings worn by the actors and most especially the complete role reversal of an era where the males had once been the dominant gender.

But, all good things had to come to an end. The lead actor, Rex, felt that it was time to move on to another role (ironically, he ended up in uniform again as a lowly constable whose main role to be the eye candy for the women officers in a police drama series). Another actor was briefly cast in the role, but the show was not the same without Rex, and the female studio executives decided it was time to pull the plug on the series.

The show is still fondly remembered by its loyal fans, as attested by the many conventions across the world that have been organised. The male fans typically wear a facsimilie of Stephen's maid's outfit, to the delight of their female partners, who are well used to wearing the trousers.

1 comment:

  1. I like your idea of rewriting the history to the gender role reversal way. ;)

    ReplyDelete