Note: This post is written under the assumption that you, the reader, will have a working knowledge of the 1982 film version of Annie. If you’ve never seen it or are entirely unfamiliar with how that little story goes, turn back now. Go watch it. Then come back. You’ll thank me later.
Y’all… Why does Miss Hannigan get to hang out with everyone at the circus that Daddy Warbucks hires for his back yard at the end of the movie?
Seriously. This woman was just an accomplice in a plot to kidnap Annie and defraud Oliver Warbucks. She should be in jail, awaiting trial.
I get that Hannigan could have cut a sweet deal with the DA to testify against Rooster, who was clearly the criminal mastermind of this evil, showtune singing trio. But that doesn’t mean she’s scott free and invited to the back yard circus to watch fireworks and celebrate Annie’s return home and adoption by Mr. Warbucks.
Also, do a little digging, NYPD. This lady is making gin in her bathtub. A bathtub that resides inside an orphanage. Someone put this woman in charge of dozens of little girls. And she’s making homemade alcohol. During prohibition. And that doesn’t even begin to touch the obvious abuse that’s happening in that place.
Look, I realize that the foster care system was a completely different animal in those days, but that still doesn’t excuse Hannigan from the kidnapping and the fraud. Are we expected to simply forgive her because she grew a conscience in the end when she realized that Rooster was probably going to kill Annie? Grow up, lady! What did you think he was going to do with her once he cashed Warbucks’ check?! His plan was always to dump that kid in the East River at some point. They just couldn’t spell that out in a PG-rated movie in 1982.
So I think it’s time to rethink our final opinions regarding Carol Burnett’s Miss Hannigan. Hers is not a redemption story. She’s an unlikable, despicable woman who descends into straight-up criminal activity.