Monday, September 9, 2013

Happy Birthday, Angela Cartwright!

Angela Cartwright was one of my favorite television stars while I was growing up. I first knew her from Lost in Space, and then when I was in my mid-teens I saw her on The Sound of Music. I saw her a few times on Make Room For Daddy (The Danny Thomas Show) a few years later, but that was never one of my favorites.
Angela was born on Sept 9, 1952. Which means today she is an amazing 61 years old. However, I'm sure that in most people's minds she will always be the precocious Linda from Make Room For Daddy, or the adorable Brigitta from The Sound of Music, or the perky and sexy Penny Robinson from Lost in Space.
I'm also sure that I'm not the only one who thought of her as one of my first crushes. You see, I have two older sisters, just like Will Robinson (Bill Mumy). One of them is dark, and one of them is blonde. So I definitely liked both of them. And Penny seemed the more level-headed and adventurous of the two girls; Judy (Marta Kristen) was more "grown up." After I got older I came to appreciate all three of the Robinson kids, and the actors portraying them. 
Some of the best Lost in Space episodes revolved around the character of Penny Robinson. Do you remember "All That Glitters," where Dr. Smith can turn everything he touches into platinum? How about "The Magic Mirror," where Penny befriends a young J. Michael Pollard in another dimension? "The Galaxy Gift" and "The Golden Man" shows us how pure yet just Penny is. And of course "My Friend Mr. Nobody" is the episode where Penny befriends a spirit that nobody believes exists besides her!Sure, most of the Lost in Space episodes centered around the adults, but if an episode had a specific "fantasy" element to it, Penny was usually involved.
I read a few years ago that in the third season of the show the producer, Irwin Allen, asked Angela to cut her hair. She refused, and they came up with a hairnet that she would wear in most of the later episodes. Allen evidently wanted her to "look" younger than she really was, and thought shorter hair would do that.  As a fan of long, beautiful hair, Angela, I thank you. :-) 
Angela has been a professional photographer for several years now. She also attends science fiction and pop culture conventions to meet and greet her many fans. However, it looks like she stays mostly on the West Coast. So if you are like me and don't live near California, I recommend you go to her homepage and order an autographed photo from her directly. Now I just have to decide which of her many great photos I want to order! 

In the meantime, thank you Angela for so many hours of entertainment. I hope you have a great day! 

Happy Birthday, Angela Cartwright!
as Brigitta Von Trapp from The Sound of Music

with LiS "mother" June Lockhart and "sister" Marta Kristen
with Verda the Android from season 2

Penny isn't fooled by the frog's outer ugliness in "The Golden Man"

early 3rd season episode with long hair....
...later 3rd season episode where her hair is "up"

And because today is "Music Monday" here on FRIENDS OF JUSTICE, we'll end with Angela singing with her Von Trapp Family "My Favorite Things" from The Sound of Music...appropriately, as that movie and Lost in Space and Angela Cartwright herself are three of MY favorite things!

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