Mrs. Everything, Weiner’s 2019 novel about the lives of two Jewish sisters, Jo and Bethie, which spans over six decades, is about to become a TV series. It will be produced by Sisters, the production company behind Chernobyl and Netflix’s Japanese British drama Chiri/Haji (which — fun fact! — features a Jewish detective). Honestly, they could not have picked a more Jewish, personal, or ambitious book by the bestselling author to adapt for the small screen. What a thrill.
Mrs. Everything is loosely based on the life of Weiner’s mother, who came out as a lesbian later in life. “It was taking on history and family and it felt very personal and it felt very big and it felt very daunting,” Weiner told Kveller in 2019.
The story of Bethie and Jo is an ever pertinent one, touching on activism, assault, LGBTQ rights, reproductive rights, and so many other important and, sadly, still timely and pressing issues today.
“I feel like these stories are timeless in a very depressing way,” Weiner explained to us last year. “I marched for abortion rights in college in 1990. And, here we are, like 30 years later, and I’m pretty certain that my daughters are going to be marching for abortion rights when they’re in college.”
That’s truly a bummer, but it is so important to have more pieces of culture that touch upon and shed light on these topics.
And while Judaism slowly loses its centrality in the life of Mrs. Everything‘s two main characters as they assimilate into wider American culture, for Weiner, there’s a very Jewish value at the center of this book.
“I think a lot about the concept of tikkun olam, and how it’s our job to repair the broken world. Both Jo and Bethie are on that mission. With Bethie, it’s her activism, and with Jo, it’s telling the truth about who she is and finally finding the courage to live authentically and trying, then, to heal whatever damage has been done to her children,” Weiner told Kveller.