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Ramona Linscott

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Ramona Linscott is the main antagonist in the 2006 American neo noir crime thriller movie The Black Dahlia. She is the wealthy, but unstable wife of Emmett Linscott and the mother of their two daughters, Madeleine Linscott and Martha Linscott. When her family is suspected of aiding in the Black Dahlia's murder, she confesses to killing the Dahlia (along with other secrets no longer kept hidden), then she commits suicide in front of her family.

She was portrayed by actress Fiona Shaw.

Biography

In the film, Madeleine takes Bucky to her family mansion where she introduces him to her family. First, her wealthy father, Emmett Linscott. Then as she introduces Bucky to her mother, Ramona appears to be shaky and unstable, yet manages to mutter that Madeleine's been saying very nice things about him. Then, Madeleine introduces Bucky to her little sister Martha, before the family gathers for dinner.

Everyone at the dinner table's having a grand time. However, when Emmett begins the topic of conversation by talking about their old friend and gardener, Georgie Tilden, Ramona becomes unstable; fidgeting in her seat, muttering words under breath and stabbing the food on her plate with her eating utensils. Emmett notices this and asks her if she would like to join in the conversation. Ramona accepts and starts the conversation by saying that when Emmett supposly married her for her father's money, he promised her a wedding present by naming Ramona Boulevard after her, but only managed to put her name on a street light post on a dead-end block in Lincoln Heights. Ramona asks Bucky if he's familiar with the neighborhood, and when he replies that he grew up there, Ramona claims that the Mexican prostitutes that reside in neighborhood, expose themselves in windows to male passengers and that several of the prostitutes know Mr. Linscott by name.

Angered at his wife's remarks at the dinner table, Emmett slams his napkin down on the dinner table and tells Ramona "That's ENOUGH!". Ramona is rather hurt by this and says that she will sing for her supper when the mayor and other party guests arrive, but she will not be entertaining for one of Madeleine's "male whores". An incensed Ramona tells Emmett that she's not fond of Madeleine's choice of a boyfriend, that the young man is just a common police officer and chastises Emmett for his approval of that situation. Ramona finishes by saying she couldn't believe that Emmett thinks so little of her, puts a napkin on her dinnerplate and exits the dining room for the evening to her room, but not before stomping past Bucky to inflict fear on him and make her disapproval understood.

When Bucky discovers horrific evidence that links the Linscott family to the Black Dahlia's murder, Bucky breaks into the Linscott manor and catches Emmett and Madeline on the foot of the stairs, nearly kissing incestuously. Bucky accuses them of murdering Elizabeth Short, and that the two of them covered it up. Bucky reveals that Emmett helped construct the pornographic film starring Elizabeth Short and Lorna Mertz., he knows because he's seen the set. Emmett and Madeleine deny any involvement with the murder until Bucky begins to shoot some of their precious, expensive antiques. Emmett begs him to stop breaking things and claims that it was their recently deceased gardener, Georgie Tilden. Bucky is in disbelief of the claim but Madeleine defends Emmett by saying that it was true; Georgie was always sneaking around Emmett's property, he had seen the making of the pornographic film and got "really crazy" about Elizabeth. Madeleine also reveals that Elizabeth called her for money and Emmett offered her money to date a nice man he knew. Bucky says they must have known he was a sick man by then. Emmett claims that Georgie was passive, he liked to touch dead things and his father was a surgeon from Scotland. Emmett claims he didn't know that Georgie would go crazy like that.

Ramona appears from her chambers in her evening wear and nightgown. She screams "Liar! You Liar!" continually, calling Emmett on his lies about Georgie. Ramona tells Emmett that he's done Georgie enough damage and that he should leave him alone. Ramona then calms down and asks Bucky to stop shooting their antiques, because the rich don't own art just for themselves; they like to safe keep their antiques for future generations. Ramona is surprised when Bucky asks her how did Emmett damage Georgie and what did he do to him to make him go so crazy. Ramona paraphrases "Who made what made who go crazy?" before answering. Ramona reveals first that it was because of Madeleine; she was only 11 years old but she bared a striking resemblance to Georgie. Emmett begins to chastise Ramona but she screams so loudly at Emmett, telling him to shut up. Emmett holds hands together with Madeleine and goes silent.

Ramona admits to having an affair with Georgie and that Madeleine was the result of their affair together. Although Emmett didn't care about Ramona's affair with Georgie, he was lead to believe that he was Madeleine's "father". When Emmett found out about that betrayal, he damaged Georgie by mutilating his face. Ramona visited Georgie as he recuperated in the hospital and gave a Hugo book as a gift. Ramona enunciated her words, that it was her clown book, her Glasgow smile picture, her Gwynplaine (Gwynplaine being the lead protagonist, who was disfigured with the Glasgow smile in the 1928 film The Man Who Laughs). As Romana referenced the film, she presses her fingers up against the sides of her face to mockingly impersonate the Glasgow Smile, then chuckles for a little bit. Her motive for killing Short was because she didn't want Georgie dating a girl who looked like their daughter. After confessing, she pulls out a pistol that was hidden in her nightgown, smiles like the Glasgow Smile while saying goodbye and shoots herself to death, leaving Emmet, Madeleine and Officer Bleichert mortified.

Quotes

"Madeleine has been saying nice things about you."
~ Ramona to Bucky when she first meets him
"He's a common police officer, my God, Emmett!"
~ Ramona expressing her anger towards her husband about Madeleine's choice of beau
"He was obsessed with her...in that filthy film!"
~ Ramona upset about her lover Georgie's infatuation with The Dahlia whom he'd seen in a lesbian porno film
"I was waiting up...in Hollywoodland!"
~ Ramona describing her attack on The Dahlia with a baseball bat
"She looked so like my Maddie!"
~ Ramona describing the resemblance between her daughter and The Dahlia whom her lover was going to have sex with
"It was the cruelest joke of all!"
~ Ramona's last words to Bucky about killing The Dahlia before committing suicide in front of her family

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