25 Nearest and Dearest 20/25
Pan Am Stewardesses (Pan Am)
Every once in a while an underrated gem manages to captivate our entire beings before it’s unfairly axed. And ABC’s Pan Am is a prime example of a series with endless potential that wasn’t given the opportunity to grow. However, in its first and only season it explored female dynamics in a way that’s unfortunately rare on television. It is frustrating how often females can be made into enemies for no real reason, but that was never the case with the Pan Am stewardesses — from the first episode, the women were always established as friends. And even when a new girl came into their circle, she was still welcomed as family. Maggie, Laura, Kate, and Colette looked out for each other, had fun together, and perhaps, most admirably, they always supported each other.
It didn’t matter if you came in yesterday or years ago, you were always safe. It’s never easy being the new kid, even when you know someone, but that was never the case with Laura joining Pan Am. Laura may have been Kate’s younger sister, but when she joined the stewardesses, she became everyone’s sister. Maggie and Colette didn’t just see her as the girl on the cover of Time Magazine or Kate’s little sister, but they saw her as Laura: a new member of their team. And this team took care of each other; when one was in need of assistance, the others came through. And they never let too much time pass when someone on the flight was giving their sister a hard time. While the rest of the world saw Laura as the beauty behind the cover, the girls chose to get to know Laura — the woman on the inside.
On another note, we always found it fascinating how easily the girls kept forgiving and loving one another — namely Bridget. And not that it’s a bad thing, but rather we’re so used to females being harsh with one another for the sake of drama, it was a pleasant twist. Though she wasn’t always with them, because she was once a member of Pan Am, she remained cherished. At the end of the day, these women never turned against each other. Yes, they argued and disagreed on all sorts of matters, but yet, it never escalated into something that’d lead to hatred. They could argue, they could disagree, but they’d never stop being a family. And if anyone even dared to make one of them feel as though they were less than, they’d be there to pick them up. The girls clicked in a way that is forever, and if the series had continued, we are certain their bond would have grown even stronger.
The best part of their friendship however, is the uniqueness they each bring to the group. And through their distinct kindness towards each other, they are able to understand one another in beautifully profound ways. It is that very understand which tirelessly inspires them to see the good in each other. It’s that very understanding which inspires them to always forgive each other. And that goodness they’ve found in one another allows them to believe in each other, and themselves, with everything they’ve got. One of our all time favorite moments between the girls takes place inside the plane during a stop. Truth or dare leads to fun conversations, interesting confessions, and all around good time. And most importantly, it’s this moment which gorgeously showcases not only how comfortable they are with one another, but how safe they feel talking to each other. These are not just the girls who believe in one another and understand each other, but they are the girls who will care no matter what. And though Kate’s initially upset with Laura’s decision, Colette and Maggie continue to support her revealing that friends will ceaselessly stand by each other.
There was always drama on Pan Am, and even the stewardesses dealt with some pretty heavy storylines, but for the most part, Pan Am was a series that exemplified what female friendships are meant to be like. At no point did any of the girls turn against each other. And though Kate and Bridget were spies, never once would they have turned on any of the girls. Although Maggie’s secret about not knowing Portuguese upset Laura, it didn’t mean she wasn’t forgiven. As mentioned above, if the series had gone on for longer, there’s no doubt in our minds that these friendships would’ve evolved beautifully. Each of the women had their own stories to tell, but their bond and the times they shared together is magic. Even their during their darkest moments they were always certain they weren’t standing alone. No one will ever understand their journey as well as they do, and it’s that very understanding that’ll always bring them back to each other. Goodbye 1963:
“It was the best of times, it was the worst of times. I loved every minute of it. I love us. And this. I love this.”
If the series had to tragically end, this was the perfect way it could have gone. This quote divided by each of the women voicing their opinions on the past year felt right. Profound in countless ways and appropriate — incredibly appropriate. If you’re looking for a series with effortless and remarkably established relationships, Pan Am is the series for you. There’s nothing quite like it — indescribable and truly incomparable.