Happy Birthday Barbara Parkins May 22

“The Raven haired sylph who walks in beauty like the night… Of cloudless climes and starry skies; And all that’s best of dark and bright; Meet in her aspect and her eyes…” — Lord Byron

Barbara Parkins as B.A. in a scene from the film ‘The Kremlin Letter’, 1970. (Photo by 20th Century-Fox/Getty)

It is so easy to look upon Barbara Parkins’ exquisite beauty and make that the initial distinction you recall about her as an actress before recounting the roles she’s contributed to, the iconic roles that have heightened the dream factory of our cultural consciousness that is — film and television. As Betty Anderson of Peyton Place and Anne Welles in Valley of the Dolls. But beyond the glamour and the pulp and the melodrama and the camp, there is an actress who not only possessed an otherworldly beauty but a depth of character and quality. Who touched our hearts but was one of the earliest women to kick ass too! As Betty Anderson, she broke ground in a role that discussed women who began to reflect on their bodies being used as negotiable product for men, even in good clean small moralistic New England towns. And through a lot of painful, solitary self discovery learned to rely on her own self-reliance and newly mined self respect. Barbara Parkins was leading the way three years before Jane Fonda was flyin’ free up in space in 1968’s Barbarella.

I have always been drawn to Barbara Parkins, her inherent sensuality, sophistication, her dreamy voice. There’s a deep well of desire and poetry simmering below that obvious beauty. She brings that sensuality with her to every versatile role as an actress. And that is why I’ve been in love with her since the very first time I saw her.

Barbara Parkins was among the women chosen by famed photographer Patrick Lichfield to be included in his 1983 book, “The Most Beautiful Women”. Continue reading “Happy Birthday Barbara Parkins May 22”

MonsterGirl’s 150 Days of Classic Horror! #4 Asylum (1972) / Tales From the Crypt (1972)


This post is part of Monstergirl’s 150 Days of Classic Horror “One photo, one paragraph challenge for long winded me!”

ASYLUM (1972)

Asylum film poster

Asylum Patrick Magee

Director Roy Ward Baker’s horror anthology is based on several tales by master storyteller Robert Bloch (Psycho 1960) When Dr. Martin (Robert Powell) a psychiatrist looking for employment arrives at the asylum for the criminally insane he doesn’t know quite what he’s stepping into. Patrick Magee plays Dr. Rutherford who gives him the odd assignment of figuring out which one of the patients is actually a former psychiatrist gone mad. Martin is sent to talk to four separate inmates who then relate their own personal bizarre experiences of the macabre and how they ultimately landed in the asylum. This is one of the best Amicus productions with a slew of fantastic actors to fill out the cast. It’s cheeky and eerie and most definitely a contender for some of the Hammer horror anthologies with its horrific shock value and campy dark humor. The cast includes: Peter Cushing in ‘The Weird Taylor’, Britt Ekland and Charlotte Rampling in ‘Lucy Comes to Stay’, and one of my favs Barbara Parkins (Valley of the Dolls 1967) Richard Todd and Sylvia Syms in ‘Frozen Fear. The last segment is entitled ‘Manikins of Horror’ with Herbert Lom!


talesfromthecrypt film poster

Tales From the Crypt

Five people get lost in a crypt and meet up with a strange crypt keeper who tells them stories of how they died. Another Amicus anthology this time directed by Freddie Francis. Stars Joan Collins, Peter Cushing, Ian Hendry, Patrick Magee, Nigel Patrick, Robert Hutton, and Ralph Richardson as The Crypt Keeper.

4 Down, just 146 to go!-MonsterGirl