Hysterical Woman of The Week: Nancy Kelly as Christine Penmark, from The Bad Seed (1956)

“For little Rhoda, murder is child’s play.”

THE BAD SEED (1956)

The Bad Seed film poster

Mervyn LeRoy’s bold psychological thriller adapted from Maxwell Anderson’s play.

Nancy Kelly confronts her crispy clean dress wearin’ skipping little psychopathic child Rhoda (Patty McCormack) in a scene where both mother and child devolve into the realm of ‘hysterical’ over the truth behind poor Claude Daigle’s brutal death, prompted by his winning the penmanship medal.

Nancy Kelly as Christine Penmark

Little Rhoda Penmark

I have the prettiest mother
“I have the prettiest mother in the world”

A basket of evil hugs

I was going to use Eileen Heckert’s compelling performance as the besotted mournful Hortense Daigle, but I couldn’t resist this climactic scene instead…

Eilleen Heckert as Hortense Daigle The Bad Seed

What’ll you give me for a basket of kisses?, I’ll give you a basket of hugs -MonsterGirl