Presenting “Love Always,” a recurring feature in which we pay tribute to the women who helped shape our views on pop culture.
We first became aware of the faboo Adrienne Barbeau with her role as Bea Arthur’s daughter in Maude, and watched her as she became a mainstay on network TV in the 70’s and 80’s, from game shows, to Love Boat, to her numerous appearances on Fantasy Island, and TV movies. After she made her film debut in The Fog, she soon became an icon of the horror/fantasy genre, and was a huge part of the lives of any kid growing up in the 80’s who had access to HBO.
Today is her 70th birthday, so let’s take a look back at some of her career highlights. Here are just ten reasons why I will Love Always Adrienne Barbeau.
It’s tough to go up against a force of nature like Bea Arthur, but for 93 episodes, Adrienne (in her first TV role) starred as single mom Carol, the daughter of that uncompromising, enterprising anything but tranquilizing Maude. Here’s Adrienne explaining how she got the role.
Still one of John Carpenter’s most underrated films, Adrienne was everything as single mom and lighthouse DJ Stevie Wayne. I thought Stevie had such a perfect life: Fabulous beach house, a convertible, her own radio station in a converted lighthouse, that smoky voice that turned everyone on. Sure, there were a few pesky problems like GHOST LEPERS coming back from the grave to seek vengeance, but who wouldn’t put up with a few ghosts for that magnificent lighthouse view! She was definitely my second favorite woman named Stevie.
Battle Of The Network Stars
Adrienne competed against Little House On The Prairie gazelle Karen Grassle in this 1976 edition. She lost, but only because Ma Ingalls was so freakishly tall (and because Adrienne was a little … top heavy).
One of the all-time beloved cult classics, Adrienne played the strong and fierce Alice Cable, who has to deal with a maniacal Louis Jordan (is there any other kind of Louis Jordan?), and helped out by our favorite peat moss. Here she discusses the impact the film made.
Three words: “Balls For Earrings.” Just tell it to call you Billy.
Someone’s Watching Me
Before he made Halloween, John Carpenter met future wife Adrienne filming this terrific suspense TV thriller, starring Lauren Hutton and Adrienne as her sarcastic co-worker. Let Casey Kasem fill you in!
Batman: The Animated Series
During the run of Batman: The Animated Series (and also The New Batman Adventures and Gotham Girls), Adrienne starred as Catwoman/Selina Kyle, and her unmistakable voice brought the character to life. here she talking about the role.
For two tragically short seasons (why, HBO, why?), Adrienne starred as snake-charmer Ruthie, part of the original TV Freak Show.
Adrienne’s appearance as Victoria’s mother Marion was the absolute highlight of Season Two of Revenge. Kicked to the curb by her daughter, she came back for a cameo at the end of the series … and died.
There Are Worse Things I Could Do
In 2006 Adrienne published her autobiography There Are Worse Things I Could Do, and if that title sounds familiar, it’s the name of Rizzo’s spotlight song in the musical Grease, which Adrienne originated in the Broadway production in 1972.
Your turn! What’s your favorite Adrienne moment?