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As the person who generally posts images to our Frock Flicks Facebook feed, every so often, as I’m scouring the Internet for images, I come across a few clunkers. This post was inspired by an image of Casanova from 1987, starring Richard Chamberlain and what looks like all the extras from Dallas. I had to find more for Snark Week!
Now, I know this is shooting fish in a barrel. The 1980s was all about low-budget TV movies and miniseries, and I realize that many of these films probably weren’t even TRYING to be historically accurate … and I’m sure the costume designer spent most of the production quietly weeping in the corner, wishing desperately s/he had just five more dollars to spend.
Also, I haven’t seen ANY of these! So they could very well be god’s gift to acting/storytelling/whatever. I don’t care. Behold, where polyester goes to die…
Jane Seymour in East of Eden (1981), for her stiletto-heeled soft-core porn look.
Leonard Nimoy for yellow face in Marco Polo (1982).
LIZ TAYLOR and GEORGE HAMILTON for allll their makeup for Poker Alice (1987). I’m not sure whose lips are pinker.
10. Ivanhoe (1982)
England, 1194, when all the jewels were hot-glued on…
Short, feather-y hair was fashionable…
And the ladies were all about the Hayley Mills hair.
Rebecca, the Jewish girl. My Barbie had this outfit. You think I’m kidding.
Silvery sparkly pink brocade was THE fashion trend of the 1190s.
Anthony Andrews. I have residual good feelings towards him for The Scarlet Pimpernel, but could they perhaps vary his hair just once?
Watch one scene in HD on YouTube!
9. April Morning (1987)
This would be higher up the list if I could find more images than just these two, which hint at SO much American Revolutionary War goodness:
Tommy Lee Jones and Chad Lowe (brother of Rob Lowe) as American militia-men.
Love interest Ruth, churning the butter in her spiral-laced jacket and Justine Bateman hair.
8. The Blue and the Gray (1982)
It’s the American Civil War (1860s), baby! And yeah, it’s not all bad:
This is quite lovely!
I don’t hate this, although I am suspicious of the fiber content!
Not bad, even if the fringe was stolen from an innocent couch!
Presumably she’s wearing this at home, with no one else around?
But then it quickly goes downhill:
Short poufy sleeves? Really? Also shitty lace and not-great fitting.
Julia Duffy clearly decided to hang on to her Newhart hair.
Stacy Keach of Mike Hammer AND bangs, woot!
Clearly someone watched the Prince Charles and Diana wedding on repeat.
I’m not kidding, Charles and Di! (BTW, IS your bertha supposed to eat your head?)
I’M SERIOUS, CHARLES AND DI! Also, we have now found why there was a sudden dearth of nylon lace in 1981-2.
7. The Hunchback of Notre Dame (1982)
With none other than Anthony Hopkins as the hunchback! But what’s far more entertaining is Lesley-Anne Down as Esmerelda, just your average Romani (i.e., Gypsy) woman in medieval Paris:
You guys. I didn’t think anything could top Casanova. Until I found The Wild Women of CHASTITY Gulch (get it?). Here’s your synopsis, courtesy of Wikipedia:
In Civil War-era Southern Missouri, Dr. Maggie McCullough (Priscilla Barnes) travels to the aid of her ailing Aunt Annie (Joan Collins), the town’s madame, in the lovely community of Sweetwater. With all of the men away at war, Maggie coordinates a truce between Aunt Annie’s girls and the respectable women of the town. While Maggie contemplates the love triangle that’s formed with an injured Union fighter (Donny Osmond) and a captured Confederate doctor (Lee Horsley), a demented faction of soldiers invade Sweetwater and the women must spring into action to defend their homes.
That’s right: JOAN COLLINS and PRISCILLA BARNES (Teri from Three’s Company).
In a town run by WIMMEN!
Apparently there’s a lot of “You git your lily-livered butt outta my whorehouse!”
LISA WELCHEL (The Facts of Life) with her tits out! And Blair Warner hair!
DONNY OSMOND as a Civil War soldier!
A light hand when it comes to makeup!
Subtley in costuming!
Old West Barbie!
SO MUCH WRONG THAT IT’S RIGHT!
Watch a (nail fetish) fan-made compilation on YouTube!