Long live Betty Hutton

Originally published on 3/13/2007 at Pop Quiz, Hotshot!

Actress, singer and “Blonde Bombshell” Betty Hutton has died. For most of you reading this, you’re probably asking “Betty who?”

She’s nowhere near as famous as many of her contemporaries, but what Betty lacked in fame, she made up for talent and personality.

Hutton was best known for her role in 1950 musical ”Annie Get Your Gun,” playing the bombastic Annie Oakley. That’s an equally good description for Hutton: Bombastic.

And while I’ve never seen “Annie,” I’m sad to see her go because as star of “The Miracle of Morgan’s Creek,” she’s featured in one of my favorite movies of all time. That film was written and directed by the amazing Preston Stuges, the man who truly made screwball comedies screwy.

In the before-its-time “Miracle,” Hutton plays the flighty and pregnant Trudy Kockenlocker as she tries to find a suitable father for her bun in the oven. Hutton and co-star Eddie Bracken have to be admired for their flawless delivery of high-speed dialogue crafted by Struges.

The film, like many of Sturges’ works, are shown every once in a while on TCM, and they’re worth a look. If you haven’t seen it, find it. You’ll be laughing in no time. If you don’t trust my opinion on it, ask any film buff or film student and they’ll say the same.

As for Hutton, one thing you can tell about her is that she was a true ham. Just take a look at her biography on IMDB.com. Nearly all the images for her show her with a big goofy grin. It seems apparent that she never took herself too seriously, an attitude that you have to admire for a girl who starred in her own eponymous TV show, has had a starring role under Cecil B. DeMille and worked with Fred Astaire.

Betty, this PQH! staffer will miss you, even if all the other PQH!ers haven’t the foggiest idea who you are.


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