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Vampira: Beatnik, Goth, Punk

The late actress died in obscurity, only to be "resurrected" by admirers of the original and the eccentric.

by
Kathy Shaidle

Bio

October 31, 2013 - 9:00 am
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vampira color

I’ve toyed with the idea of starting a regular series called something like “You Invented Nothing.”

I’d put up vintage photographs without comment, except for the date, and maybe a snarky title.

Perhaps:

“Hipsters, behold!”

I’ve complained here before about Lady Gaga stealing “half her career” from Nina Hagen, Toyah Willcox, Lene Lovich and Hazel O’Connor.

Or maybe you’ve already seen this widely-Tumblr’d photo taken in Canada in 1940.

Note the casual, camera-carrying guy center right, looking quite out of place with his sunglasses, graphic shirt and hat-less head.

He’s been dubbed the “Time Traveling Hipster”:

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Is the photo a (sort of lame) hoax?

Nope.

People back then wore sunglasses and clothes with writing on them (especially varsity sweaters and sweatshirts).

Just not as many as we see today.

Every generation thinks it invented sex, but it’s less commonly observed that it also thinks it invented “cool.”

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All Comments   (9)
All Comments   (9)
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Ironic that Shaidle mentioned Nurmi admitting to basing her stage persona on Morticia Addams, and yet no one mentioned that it is none other than Jackie Coogan, aka "Uncle Fester" chatting up Steve Cochrane in the referenced YouTube clip featuring Nurmi.
51 weeks ago
51 weeks ago Link To Comment
Enjoyable read. I'll add another visual. If you want to see the early punk look, just watch any Laurel and Hardy movie and wait until scatterbrained Stan Laurel scratches his spiked and unkempt hair. Also, the current style for men of a scalp shaved at the sides with a full head of groomed hair on top was quite popular around 1915.
51 weeks ago
51 weeks ago Link To Comment
"Plan 9 from Outer Space" has been called "The Worst Movie Ever Made." But that can't possibly be true. "Plan 9" has given millions of people enjoyment ever since it was made. It's a classic, of sorts. To actually be "the worst movie ever made," would have to be dull, boring; probably some star riddled, ultra big budget turkey like "Ishtar," "Heaven's Gate," or "Town and Country;" preferably starring Warren Beatty, or Kevin Costner. "Plan 9" is way too funny to be the worst movie ever.
51 weeks ago
51 weeks ago Link To Comment
I would call Plan 9 one of the best really bad movies ever made.
51 weeks ago
51 weeks ago Link To Comment
Great piece, Kathy.
51 weeks ago
51 weeks ago Link To Comment
Yes
51 weeks ago
51 weeks ago Link To Comment
I've seen "Plan 9 From Outer Space." Fascinating in its own train-wreck way; Vampira's part is awfully wooden, though. In the entire movie, I recall only one coherent speech, the explanation of the disaster ray.
I've also seen most of "Glen or Glenda" and I enjoyed Johnny Depp's turn in "Ed Woods". Never did see any other of Vampira's body of work, though.
51 weeks ago
51 weeks ago Link To Comment
Marginal freaks have their place...at the margins. It's when they take center stage that true trouble begins. Witness this radically lost and confused age.
51 weeks ago
51 weeks ago Link To Comment
OMG could the narrator in the first Youtube video be any more loquacious..geez get to the point already.
51 weeks ago
51 weeks ago Link To Comment
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