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How Joan Rivers Inspired Jean Smart’s Hacks Character

Jean Smart‘s Hacks The character of Deborah Vance is reminiscent of many actresses.

His humble beginnings as a husband and wife duo were inspired by elaine may and Mike Nichols, according to The Envelope. And Deborah’s subsequent divorce was very loosely based on the breakup of Lucille ball and Desi Arnaz, who, unlike Deborah, maintained a cordial friendship after their breakup.

However, the most obvious source of inspiration for the HBO Max character was that of E! Jeanne Rivers, a blunt blonde who liked to look good, work hard and make people laugh.

The actress, who died in September 2014 from surgery, shared an equally crass sense of humor, often mocking traditional gender roles. It was this carefree attitude that Jean loved about personality, relating The cup in May, “I wasn’t trying to do her, because my sensitivity is different from what she did, but she was just a genius when she was younger.”