Thursday, May 29, 2014

Fun has more blondes: Marilyn Monroe and more movie blondes of the fifties

For a time in the fifties Marilyn Monroe was the blonde bombshell of the movies. So it was no surprise when producers threw out casting nets for another Monroe. Not so easy, was it? There were women who had the attributes, right down to the peroxide roots, who were soon pushing their chests out for photographers. As I recall, except for Bardot, none of the women whose pictures I’m showing today ever had that star turn that Marilyn did. And Lord knows they tried. But they tended to be known for their boobs and not their brains. Those boobs, plus sexy, smouldering looks and pouty lips may look great on a movie screen, but in the end they are no substitute for talent.

These are women who competed (if anyone could compete) with Marilyn for sex goddess.

Joi Lansing was a devout Mormon girl from Utah who got into movies and television by showing her heavenly features. I used to see her on The Bob Cummings Show and also Love That Bob, also starring Cummings.

 Diana Dors was very sexy and had the Marilyn look down.

I can say the same for Mamie Van Doren.

Jayne Mansfield had success as an actress, model and singer, but was more notorious for appearing at occasions where she spilled out of her dress. In this famous picture Sophia Loren checks out the competition.

Maybe nowadays Jayne Mansfield is just as famous for being the mother of actress Mariska Hargitay (Law and Order: SVU).

Brigitte Bardot appeared in steamy French films. I remember Bardot well. I clipped her pictures out of newspapers and magazines and kept them under a rug in my closet...until my mother found them, that is.

Trying to replace the reigning blonde goddess of tinseltown was an impossible task, as it turned out.


Kirk said...

Marilyn Monroe had talent, and the studios didn't want to believe that. It may be Monroe herself didn't want to believe it at first, since she was such a relentlessly shallow self-promoter early on. That sounds mean, but I'm not trying to be. I think people tend to overlook her humble beginnings. She grew up poor, and I wouldn't be surprised if the need to escape poverty wasn't such an all-consuming concern for awhile that it just blotted out any sense of self that may have existed outside of that.

I believe that picture at the top is from The Misfits, Monroe's final film.

notacynic said...

For my money, Bardot was the prettiest, Jayne Mansfield was the most voluptuous but none of the pretenders had what Marilyn had. The camera loved her and she loved it right back. And she found the perfect blend between pretty girl dumb and hip to the whole scene.

Postino said...

notacynic, what I remember about Marilyn during the fifties was how much attention was paid to her. Her marriages, her acting aspirations,the subject of ridicule from some, actually, which had to be soul-destroying. But in that she proved the critics and naysayers wrong. I put her performances in her films against any other actress.

Postino said...

Kirk, thanks for the ID of The Misfits. My wife found the 8x10 glossy I scanned being used as a bookmark in a magazine she found in a thrift store.