The Lady and the Dale
Directed by
Country of originUnited States
Original languageEnglish
No. of episodes4
Executive producers
CinematographyNathan M. Miller
  • Christopher Donlon
  • Nicholas Alden
  • Mel Mel Sukekawa Mooring
Production companies
Original release
ReleaseJanuary 31 (2021-01-31) –
February 14, 2021 (2021-02-14)

The Lady and the Dale is an American documentary television miniseries revolving around Elizabeth Carmichael, who launched Twentieth Century Motor Car Corporation and created a car called "The Dale". It consists of four episodes and premiered on HBO on January 31, 2021.[2]


In 1970, entrepreneur Elizabeth Carmichael rose to fame with her creation: "The Dale", a fuel efficient three-wheeled car. As the car rose to prominence, it thrust Carmichael into media scrutiny about the car's technology and her own past.[3]

The series features interviews with Carmichael's children Candi Michael and Michael Michael; grandchild Jeri Buchard; news anchors and journalists Dick Carlson, Pete Noyes and Mark Lisheron; Carmichael's brother-in-law Charles Richard Barrett; former employees of Twentieth Century Motor Car Corporation; and Susan Stryker, Mia Yamamoto and Sandy Stone.[2]


No.Title [4]Directed byOriginal air date [4]U.S. viewers
1"Soldier of Fortune"Nick Cammilleri & Zackary DruckerJanuary 31, 2021 (2021-01-31)0.206[5]
2"Caveat Emptor: Buyer Beware"Nick Cammilleri & Zackary DruckerJanuary 31, 2021 (2021-01-31)0.139[5]
3"The Guilty Fleeth"Nick Cammilleri & Zackary DruckerFebruary 7, 2021 (2021-02-07)0.114[6]
4"Celestial Bodies"Nick Cammilleri & Zackary DruckerFebruary 14, 2021 (2021-02-14)0.167[7]


In August 2020, it was announced that Nick Cammilleri and Zackary Drucker would direct the series and executive produce, with Mark Duplass and Jay Duplass serving as executive producers under their Duplass Brothers Productions banner, with HBO Documentary Films producing and HBO set to distribute.[8]


On Rotten Tomatoes, the series holds an approval rating of 100% based on 19 reviews, with an average rating of 8.12/10. The website's critical consensus states, "An intoxicating blend of historical footage, candid interviews, and animation that deftly captures Liz Carmichael's incredible life, The Lady and the Dale is a wild ride."[9] On Metacritic, the series has a weighted average score of 76 out of 100, based on 11 critics, indicating "generally favorable reviews".[10]

Writing for The Wall Street Journal media critic John Anderson described the series as "A lot of stories - about fraud, flight, FBI manhunts, transgender politics, selective prosecution, bias in the media, and corruption in the courts." Anderson faulted the series for its extensive use of cutout animation, an approach described as "too flippant for the subject matter."[11]


Year Award Category Recipient(s) Result Ref.
2022 GLAAD Media Awards Outstanding Documentary The Lady and the Dale Nominated [12]


  1. ^ Clifton, Derrick (2021-02-12). "Activist Precious Brady-Davis Reclaims Her Identity as a Black, Trans Woman in New Memoir". Them. Archived from the original on 2023-02-19. Retrieved 2023-02-19.
  2. ^ a b "HBO Documentary Films' THE LADY AND THE DALE Debuts January 31". WarnerMedia (Press release). January 6, 2021. Retrieved January 7, 2021.
  3. ^ "HBO Documentary Films' "The Lady and the Dale" Debuts January 31". The Futon Critic. January 6, 2021. Retrieved January 7, 2021.
  4. ^ a b "The Lady and the Dale". The Futon Critic. Retrieved January 24, 2021.
  5. ^ a b Metcalf, Mitch (February 2, 2021). "SHOWBUZZDAILY's Top 150 Monday Cable Originals & Network Finals 1.31.2021". Showbuzz Daily. Archived from the original on February 2, 2021. Retrieved February 2, 2021.
  6. ^ Metcalf, Mitch (February 2, 2021). "SHOWBUZZDAILY's Top 150 Monday Cable Originals & Network Finals 2.7.2021". Showbuzz Daily. Archived from the original on February 9, 2021. Retrieved February 9, 2021.
  7. ^ Metcalf, Mitch (February 17, 2021). "Updated: ShowBuzzDaily's Top 150 Sunday Cable Originals & Network Finals: 2.14.2021". Showbuzz Daily. Archived from the original on February 17, 2021. Retrieved February 17, 2021.
  8. ^ White, Peter (August 5, 2020). "Mark & Jay Duplass Auto Scam Docuseries Leads Latest HBO Doc Slate". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved January 7, 2021.
  9. ^ "The Lady and the Dale". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved March 4, 2021.
  10. ^ "The Lady and the Dale". Metacritic. Retrieved February 3, 2021.
  11. ^ Anderson, John (January 28, 2021). "The Lady and the Dale Review: Running on Fumes". The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved 1 February 2021.
  12. ^ "The Nominees for the 33rd Annual GLAAD Media Awards". GLAAD. 2022-01-21. Retrieved 2022-01-22.