SEE ALSO THE SEQUEL, "ALICE SHIELDS- STUDY FOR VOICE AND TAPE (1968)"!
"There are words to that?!" That's what everybody thinks the first time they hear this. Yes, there are and they're really cool!
When JFK was asked what he was reading he mentioned a spy novel. Immediately James Bond was fast-tracked into cinema houses worldwide. He was the perfect standard for Cold War virility, a John Wayne man with Hugh Hefner's upscale tastes. Television, movies, and comics ran with the espionage concept for the rest of the decade. Women became crucial players in these games of death and deceit. The proactive Mod culture set the example of the modern self-sufficient woman, and THE AVENGERS reflected this with Honor Blackman, Diana Rigg, and Linda Thorson. They weren't Miss Moneypenny, they were Jane Bond; Kinky, cool, and lethal. MODESTY BLAISE threw down in the UK comic strips and in a hyper-Mod movie. Batgirl, enlivened by Yvonne Craig, was invented for the massively popular BATMAN TV series and took on a life of her own. "Meanwhile", villainess Catwoman stole all the best lines, attitude, and fashion. She was suitably mercurial in the forms of Lee Meriwether, Julie Newmar, and Eartha Kitt, whose brilliant casting opened a door for African American actors. French artist Guido Crepax envisioned a thoroughly adult comic where a Mod photographer named VALENTINA 's free sensuality, independence, and sharp observation guide her through surrealistic adventures. His boldly experimental graphic style was seamlessly converted to celluloid with the underrated BABA YAGA film (1973). Barbara Bain and her husband Martin Landau helped launch MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE on it's original eight year stealth run. The Italian anti-hero Diabolik stole into cinemas in the modernist spectacle called DANGER DIABOLIK, which starred John Phillip Law and Marisa Mell as his match, Eva Kant. And then there's BARBARELLA. Jean Claude-Forest pushed the envelope with his torrid tales of a spacefaring free-loving minx. Surprisingly the film, starring a breakout Jane Fonda, retained as much of the adult comic as celluloid could handle, helping herald a new wave of sensuality and permissiveness in modern film. Anita Pallenberg steals the story as the Black Queen, dazzling the world with whirling knives, fetish futurism, polyamory, and sapphic seduction. THE MAN FROM U.N.C.L.E. spun-off satellite sister Stephanie Powers in her own bulletproof jetcar. Wonder Woman got a makeover into an Avengers-inspired agent with a smashing Mod wardrobe. (In the early 70's, longtime fan Gloria Steinem helped wake her back up into her power mode.) "This (Ape) planet wouldn't be nothing without a woman or a girl", like Nova and Dr. Zira. If spy shows let women kick butt, and Barbarella opened their attitudes, this film reflected the growing disenchantment that something was going horribly wrong with the war machine. Meanwhile DC Comics let its readers redesign Supergirl for the changing age. it was one thing to be a good girl fighting crime like a man. It was another thing to be Tura Satana. In FASTER PUSSYCAT, KILL KILL! she kills men for a thrill and cuts as sharply with her tongue as with a karate chop. As the amoral Varla, she invented every badass woman from Russ Meyer to Punk to Goth to Psychobilly to Tarantino. The anti-hero westerns sparked by Sergio Leone took on new form with Raquel Welch in HANNIE CAULDER (1971), a tale of rape and complete vengeance. As the times got heavier, so did the subject matter and responses of the women in them. Yet another French erotic comic, PRAVDA: LA SURVIREUSE, was the shocking pop art SF and SM tale of a naked woman on her jaguar motorcycle tearing up tarmac. A Manga by the duo who created LONE WOLF AND CUB gave new meaning to shonen knife; its heroine "carnage" came to life and took many others in the LADY SNOWBLOOD films. Completing this arc of steadily more intense mistresses on a mission is the star of THRILLER/ THEY CALL HER ONE-EYE (1973), a Swedish film where she goes on a roaring rampage of revenge Quentin will never forget.
Any resemblence to ALIAS, Ripley from ALIEN, THE BRIDE films, LARA CROFT, Trinity from THE MATRIX, THE QUICK AND THE DEAD, HIGHLANDER THE RAVEN, LA FEMME NAKITA, DARK ANGEL, BIRDS OF PREY, BUFFY, the Beastie Boys "Body Movin" video, GHOST IN THE SHELL, AEON FLUX, CQ, BARB WIRE, BLOODRAYNE, ULTRA VIOLET, UNDERWORLD, ELEKTRA, and especially KILL BILL is entirely the point. Ahem.
Ah yes, about the Kane Triplets. Lucille, Jeanne, and Maureen were showbiz pros from New York who toured the Vegas and Reno circuit and the Sullivan, Douglas, and Como shows. Their interpretation of Lalo Schifren's iconic theme song is amazing in its vocal pyrotechnics. Once you learn the lyrics you'll want to sing them every time to impress your friends, or alarm them.
Check out this brilliant cartoon of PRAVDA done recently:
My Herstory Of Rock videos is at: