Tuesday, January 4, 2011

R.I.P. Honey West

It has come to my attention that Anne Francis passed away on the 3rd of January. She probably doesn't know this, since I never wrote to her, but Anne Francis was my childhood idol. She ranked way above Barbie and Skipper, first of all because she was real, but mostly because she wasn't a Bimbo. Up till Anne Francis, all the women in TV were quite stupid. If Honey West were on Gilligan's Island, they would have found a way off the island. Instead Ginger and Marianne stood around looking beautiful but whining about their situation, and so they are still there, or at least until the sequel twenty years later, when they were found, no thanks to their brains. Honey West was the first Charlie's Angel, only she did it on her own. The first TV Female Detective who was something to look at, and a force to contend with. She was a hot number who wasn't an idiot. THIS was something I wanted to emulate! We spent hours upon hours in my cousin's basement playing Honey West and switching rolls repeatedly so everyone got a chance to be Honey West. The rest of us waited patiently for our turn to be the heroine who gets to wipe out everyone else in the basement, hiding behind laundry baskets and under beds, we held shootouts and choreographed wrestling matches that were played out over and over again, until it was played out right. There were dramatized deaths and staircase falls while holding our chest and gagging with blood, ending with Honey getting to stand over her conquest with the gun in her hand. In charge. Honey West. All it took was a swirl of an eyebrow pencil, and honey had that little birthmark on her face. It needed no cape, no elaborate costumes like the boys needed. No green make up or massive muscles on their arms or hands for recognition. a little swirl of an eyebrow pencil gently placed on your lower cheek, and immediately you were Honey West. As one of the older cousins and in charge enough to direct this busy activity, looking back I now realize I was only eight years old. I felt old enough to actually BE Honey West, or at least a reasonable facsimile, I can't believe I had that kind of self-confidence back then. Keep in mind that these games went on for hours. The cocktail hour going on upstairs allowed us kids to really get into some serious play-acting, without supervision. It was outstanding! Kids nowadays don't really know how to play,not through any fault of their own, but because we are so diligent about our supervision of them. Perhaps because we know what can happen unsupervised? I hate to analyse these things because I fear that I will unearth some terrible truth that will label me a bad parent. And so, I just fondly remember those years of unsupervised play, and thankfully look back with such happiness at what was probably my first real role - Honey West. I believed I was her, and I may just dab a little eyebrow pencil in her honor. There is no one home to really judge me. And when Jerry gets here, I can swiftly open the door, holding my hands together as if they are a gun, point it at him and say "Hold it! I'm Honey West" He probably won't know what the hell I'm talking about. Which is probably a good thing. The fact that he is carrying a gun when he gets home may make this more realistic than I am into. And Allison gets home before Jerry, so I don't want her to think I'm a lunatic anymore than she already does. The kids are all aware of my acting aspirations - just ask any one of them what I can't do, and they 'll tell you while rolling their eyes. the Christmas monologue will go down in history. But my first real role was Honey West. Believe me, I was in the moment back then. Rest In Peace Anne Francis, and thanks for the memories. you really should link to our blog page: www.bluelinefarm.blogspot.com It's worth the hassle just to see her picture. :)

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