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TV Reviews : Loretta Young Graces NBC's 'Lady in a Corner'

December 11, 1989|LYNNE HEFFLEY

"Lady in a Corner," at 9 tonight on Channels 4, 36 and 39, stars the all too rarely seen Loretta Young. That alone is enough to raise this predictable sudser to watchable heights.

The 1947 Oscar winner (for "Farmer's Daughter")--still smashing after a career that began in the silents , for Pete's sake--plays Grace Guthrie, editor-in-chief of one of the nation's classiest fashion magazines.

Her high standards are suddenly threatened by an ambitious young editor (Lindsay Frost) hired by the magazine's well-meaning, soon-to-retire owner (Brian Keith) and by the takeover bid of a sleazy London publisher (Christopher Neame).

"There's an enormous difference between fashion and cheap sex," Grace icily asserts, and she sets out to defend truth, beauty and decency and to save the magazine from a fate worse than death.

Adhering to time-honored soap style, Neame all but snarls to show his villainy in Allan Leicht's script, but Frost, an attractive, quirky and real presence, shades her character and manages to hold her own with Young--no small task.

Directed by Peter Levin, the familiar plot is all great clothes and no surprises, but Young, on screen most of the two hours, is a marvel of feminine grace and steely strength.

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