D'Angelo tells the TV Guide Channel that her character reminds her in many ways of her real-life mother, a reserved Smith College graduate who never swore ? under any circumstances. "If she really wanted to vehemently disagree, she'd say, 'Not on your ninny-tin-type!' " the actress recalls. " 'Bulldookey' was about as hard-core as she got." Sometimes, when young Beverly was really driving her family up the wall, her always proper mother would simply resort to some passive-aggressive behavior.
"The way that I knew she was really angry when I was a little girl was she would call me Mabel," says D'Angelo. " 'Well, you'd better get your elbows off the table, Mabel!' "
D'Angelo confesses there's also a trace of real-life radio host Dr. Laura Schlessinger in her Talk to Me character. The actress says she first stumbled upon Schlessinger's popular radio show a few years ago while driving in her car. "The more I listened to her, the more infuriated I got," D'Angelo says. "I wouldn't say I'm a fan, per se, but I'm always curious to hear what bothers people and what's going on out there."