A Piece of the Past
Aquanetta died last Sunday.
This doesn't mean much to most people, unless you're a fan of old and crappy horror movies, but if you grew up in the Phoenix area during the 50's and 60's, it's pretty big news.
Aquanetta was pretty much omnipresent on local television back then, in innumerable television commercials for her husband's local car dealership. She was... how do I put this politely?... grotesque.
She had been a pretty woman (if she hadn't been, she wouldn't have had even the third-rate movie career she did), but by the time she became a pitchwoman for her husband, it was evident that she was trying desperately to retain those youthful good looks. She always appeared heavily made-up. Her eyebrows were plucked and pencilled into two swooping nightmares on her forehead. And the hair...! Her hair, long and jet-black, was always pulled back so tightly that it seemed like she was trying to give herself a naturopathic facelift. And it appeared to be slicked down with... was that actually bear grease?
This frequently made her the object of local jokes, derision, and parody.
That said, after the 60's (and after a divorce from her husband), she stopped appearing in commercials. She remained well-known locally, but as time went on, it was more and more for her activities in local charities, particularly for animal welfare. In the last few pictures I saw of her, about a decade ago, her appearance was much more natural-looking; she was an old lady, but she was a nice-looking old lady, and she seemed much more comfortable with herself than she had been in the television days. She even looked... happy.