Friday, June 04, 2010

Know Your LGBT History - The Night Strangler

Kolchak, the Night Stalker was a one-season 1970s cult favorite about a Seattle reporter who finds himself fighting supernatural creatures such as vampires, witches, and werewolves.

Though it only aired a short time, it was a very influential series amongst many horror fans, including the creators of the X-Files.

Kolchak, the Night Stalker stemmed from two television movies - The Night Stalker, about a vampire in Las Vegas, and The Night Strangler.

For the purpose of this site, let's talk about The Night Strangler (1973). In it, Kolchak is trying to solve the mystery of a 100-year-old alchemist who is killing women for their blood. The blood, taken at a certain time, is key to his potion which gives him immortality.

In movies like this where women are being murdered, it's usually a focus on young women at the prime of their life, such as stripper Charisma Beauty (played by Nina Wayne.)

What makes Charisma apropo to this site is the fact she is in a relationship with a woman named Wilma Krankheimer (portrayed by Virginia Peters).

Charisma and Wilma seem to have a stereotypical butch/femme relationship going. A good look at their relationship is seen here from 3:00 - 5:00:

Now this could be seen as insulting, but I disagree. Unfortunately, Charisma is murdered in front of Wilma in an awful scene. While I hated this, I did like the fact that the writers showed a degree of sensitivity by playing Wilma's shock and sadness at Charisma's death.

Also, one small thing I liked - the heroine of the movie, Kolchak's girlfriend (potrayed by Jo Ann Pflug) joins Kolchak in his pursuit of the killer because she is angry and distraught at Charisma's death.

So while a lot can be said about the so-called stereotypical relationship between Charisma and Wilma, the writers of The Night Strangler gets major kudos for the way they treated the relationship.

Past Know Your LGBT History postings
Know Your LGBT History - All in the Family

Know Your LGBT History - Tongues Untied

Know Your LGBT History - The Celluloid Closet

Know Your LGBT History - Querelle

Know Your LGBT History - Theatre of Blood

Know Your LGBT History - Strange Fruit

Know Your LGBT History - Designing Women

Know Your LGBT History - The Children's Hour

Know Your LGBT History - Sylvester

Know Your LGBT History - Once Bitten

Know Your LGBT History - The Boys in the Band

Know Your LGBT History - Christopher Morley, the crossdressing assassin

Know Your LGBT History - Midnight Cowboy

Know Your LGBT History - Dracula's Daughter

Know Your LGBT History - Blacula

Know Your LGBT History - 3 Strikes

Know Your LGBT History - Paris Is Burning

Know Your LGBT History - The Women

Know your LGBT History - Soul Plane

Know Your LGBT History - The Player's Club

Special Know Your LGBT History - Fame

Know Your LGBT History - Welcome Home, Bobby

Know Your LGBT History - Barney Miller

Know your lgbt history - The Jerry Springer Show

Know your lgbt history - Martin Lawrence and that 'gay guy' on his show

Know your lgbt history - The Ricki Lake Show

Know your lgbt history - Which Way Is Up

Know your lgbt history - Gays in Primetime Soaps

Know your lgbt history - Boys Beware

Know your lgbt history - The Boondocks

Know your lgbt history - Mannequin

Know your lgbt history - The Warriors

Know Your LGBT History - New York Undercover

Know Your LGBT History - Low Down Dirty Shame

Know Your LGBT History - Fortune and Men's Eyes

Know your lgbt history - California Suite

Know your lgbt history - Taxi (Elaine's Strange Triangle)

Know your lgbt history - Come Back Charleston Blue

Know your lgbt history - James Bond goes gay

Know your lgbt history - Windows

Know your lgbt history - To Wong Foo and Priscilla

Know your lgbt history - Blazing Saddles

Know your lgbt history - Sanford and Son

Know your lgbt history - In Living Color

Know your lgbt history - Cleopatra Jones and her lesbian drug lords

Know your lgbt history - Norman, Is That You?

Know your lgbt history - The 'Exotic' Adrian Street

Know your lgbt history - The Choirboys

Know your lgbt history - Eddie Murphy

Know your lgbt history - The Killing of Sister George

Know your lgbt history - Hanna-Barbera cartoons pushes the 'gay agenda

'Know your lgbt history - Cruising

Know your lgbt history - Foxy Brown and Cleopatra Jones

Know your lgbt history - I Got Da Hook Up

Know your lgbt history - Fright Night

Know your lgbt history - Flowers of Evil

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1 comment:

SJohn said...

I am so surprised to find out that Kolchak was only on one season! It seems like it was on TV for the longest time when I was a kid. I actually went to IMDB because I thought you must be mistaken, but no, you're not!

I do remember liking the show. I was also a big fan of Dark Shadows, Rod Serling's Night Gallery, and Tales From The Darkside. This was a fun show in a similar spirit, and I thought Darrin McGavin's character was really entertaining.