Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Frisky Ingenues

From a more interesting time when frisky ingenues cavorting in states of undress was not seen as an affront to the sensibilities of most Americans, except for some Methodists in the South who were just plain horrified, though not before devouring every word.

Note the metamorphosis of Thorne Smith, best known for Topper, into Norman Matson. Smith died of a heart attack in 1934 at the age of 42, but the franchise was too lucrative to let it drop, and after Matson completed the fragments of The Passionate Witch, he continued with its sequel, Bats in the Belfry.

The Passionate Witch was movie-fied into I Married a Witch, with Fredric March and Veronica Lake. Twenty years later, the theme was exhumed for Bewitched. Always something to learn from racy paperbacks with nudie cuties on the cover.

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