The Rose family eventually adjusts to and embraces Schitt’s Creek, but Moira never makes one important leap that the rest of her family does.
Moira Rose had more trouble than the rest of her family adjusting to Schitt’s Creek’s town, but there was one significant jump in making it a home that she never took. Along with improvising some of Schitt’s Creek’s most famous lines, Catherine O’Hara brought to life an iconic character that seemed to be living in a world of her own. As the flamboyant matriarch who specializes in trying to act high-class and elegant at all times, Moira Rose had the hardest time adjusting to the podunk, small-town charm of Schitt’s Creek.
While former socialites David and Alexis quickly grew to create lives of their own in Schitt’s Creek with meaningful romances and friendships, their parents Johnny and Moira, took much longer to adapt. The elder Roses had much more pride than their children, with both knowing what it meant to have affluence, status, and power before losing it all and resorting back to a modest lifestyle. With Johnny running a video store empire and Moira an eccentrically accented famous soap opera actress, it was difficult to allow themselves to resort to a “normal” lifestyle, with a humility never really being in their vocabulary before Schitt’s Creek.
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According to Schitt’s Creek’s behind-the-scenes book Best Wishes, Warmest Regards, Moira Rose never once uttered the name of the town. This was partially because of the silly connotations of the town’s name, as joked about in an important season 2 episode, but had a much more significant purpose in Moira’s character arc. David, Alexis, and Johnny all ended up embracing Schitt’s Creek as their adopted home over the course of the show’s six seasons, but Moira never did. In an emotionally poignant scene from Schitt’s Creek season 2, Johnny and Moira attended dinner with their friends from their old life who continually mocked Schitt’s Creek’s name, only for Johnny to defend their new home’s honor. This was a crucial turning point for Johnny embracing Schitt’s Creek, but this notably never happened for Moira.
In Best Wishes, Warmest regards, Catherine O’Hara revealed Moira’s view of the town, saying, “Daniel, Eugene, and I agreed, though, that Moira would never embrace life in the town and would be the one to keep her family on course to one day get out of there.” She would make a temporary life there but never fully commit to Schitt’s Creek. Instead, Moira Rose was the driving force for finding a way out, constantly reminding herself, her family, and the rest of Schitt’s Creek’s characters that it wasn’t where she belonged. At any opportunity she had to leave Schitt’s Creek, she took it and celebrated the idea of getting back to the lavish lifestyle they once led. Johnny, David, and Alexis Rose maintained facets of their old lifestyles throughout the series. Still, they were able to adapt to the town and established a life there, which Moira refused to submit to. That said, Moira never truly mocked the residents for their lifestyles, simply admitting that it worked for others but not for her.
Though Moira became a better person in Schitt’s Creek’s climate along with the rest of the Roses, she was always true to who she was before they arrived. When Moira and Johnny had to “pretend” to be poor (which they were) in order to get a good deal on a car, Moira used it as an opportunity to hone her acting skills, making it a performance rather than admitting to herself they were no longer wealthy. Whether it be her elegant clothes, faux upper-class dialect, rejection of impropriety, or recurring reflections of how much she enjoyed their old life, Catherine O’Hara’s Moira Rose repeatedly reminded herself and others that she would never be able to make Schitt’s Creek’s town her home—not to mention say its name.
More: Schitt’s Creek: How Johnny & Moira Rose Avoided A Major TV Marriage Cliche
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About The Author
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Jordan Williams is a Movie/TV Feature Senior Staff Writer for Screen Rant. She graduated from the University of Oregon in 2020 with a B.A. in Psychology and a minor in Media Studies.
Jordan is based in Seattle, Washington and enjoys exploring the natural beauty the PNW has to offer. She runs on coffee and classic movies, taking pride in having watched every film on AFI’s 100 Greatest Films list and every Best Picture Oscar winner.
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