As I wrote a few weeks ago, Dolly Parton, in her words, is “politickin’” for Dumplin’ which premieres on Netflix on Friday and I’m going to watch the f-ck out of it all weekend. We should see Dolly and Jennifer Aniston on the carpet soon and those pictures will travel the world, light up social media, light up the internet – which is their intention. Because, of course, these two women are business. And Dolly’s never been one to call her business anything else. Her gift, though, is making it fun – and it IS fun for her. Dolly’s not out here, like so many of these exhausting ACTORS, suffering for her art and telling you how much she suffered for it, in the ice and snow, fighting nature and all the beasts that she’s created. Do we prioritize art more when it is accompanied by pain? Can art be celebrated and rewarded when it isn’t painful? I wonder if this award season will give us a different answer to that question. 

Here’s Dolly on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon being amazingly Dolly on Friday night, talking about working with Jennifer Aniston and how her husband Carl Dean basically wants to have both of them in bed together: 


"But I'm serious, he does [fantasize about Jennifer Aniston]. I think he can't even get it out to pee much less get it up for three."


Can’t get it out to pee much less get it up for three is a GREAT line. Of course it is. Dolly is a writer, and as she told Variety last week:

Parton can certainly play hard to get — ask the Stagecoach Festival bookers who go after her year after year to headline, in vain. So why was she such an easy mark for the “Dumplin’” producers? “Because this has to do with my writing, and I take my songwriting more serious than anything else,” she says. “A lot of people don’t know that about me. if I had to give up everything else, if somebody said you can only do one thing for the rest of your life — you can act, you can sing, you can perform, or you can write songs — I’d write the songs and go home.”

You know what she also said to Variety? Specifically about the Oscars? 

Should she get an Oscar nomination, it’d be her third, after “Travelin’ Through” from 2005’s “Transamerica” and the title song of 1980’s “9 to 5,” which you’d say was robbed if it’d lost to anything less iconic than “Fame.” “It would be great if we could get nominated and win one, one of these days,” she says, “but even just to get nominated, I could sing on the Oscars again. You like being part of the big stuff. I don’t work for awards, but it’s always really nice when you get into the big field. You feel more important, like the big people are recognizing you,” she says, suddenly sounding a lot more like the starry-eyed girl in her song than one of entertainment’s most recognizable entrepreneurs.

It’s true. Dolly Parton is a big f-cking deal. But as big as she is, even she wants to be recognized, even she wants to feel like she’s a part of it, and she’s not above articulating exactly that. She’s not above making the art AND selling the art, Sean Penn. 

So can Dolly challenge Lady Gaga? At this point, the nomination is what she’s after. But, again, like I’ve been saying, if Dumplin’ is popular on Netflix, it’s going to be streamed all through December, during the holidays, and it’ll be newer and fresher, on people’s minds. And Dolly, as we all know, has more than one gear. If she does get that nomination, she will be showing us ever gear she has until all the votes are counted.