By On the occasion of our 20th anniversary
By Gustavo Arellano
By R. Scott Moxley
By Alfonso Delgado
By Courtney Hamilton
By Joel Beers
By Peter Maguire
By Charles Lam
There's something very endearing about Mamie's lack of inhibition, her sense of humor and her earthiness. On her website, she posts a smorgasbord of nude photos of herself as well as a number of little video clips of her cavorting in her birthday suit. My favorite is the one in which she does a striptease on her star at the Hollywood Walk of Fame; it was shot so early in the morning that Mamie almost froze her tits off. Along with autographed photos, Mamie also hawks signed nipple prints. ("For the man who has everything," she says.)
But Mamie's "Bedtime Stories" outshine the best of her photos and memorabilia. The stories run the gamut from the hilarious and the sublime to the downright horrific, and a number are versions of those told in Mamie's 1987 tell-all memoir, Playing the Field. For instance, Mamie reveals the secret behind the bulge in Welsh superstud Tom Jones' polyester trousers: "He must sew it into his pants," she chuckles. "It was a HUGE disappointment." And she relates how macho man Burt Reynolds is really a Quick Draw McGraw: "I was too tipsy to remember my own advice about guys with the biggest hype being the guys who deliver the least." There are also sad, sweet remembrances of Marilyn Monroe and titillating tales of making out with Elvis in Las Vegas.
But the one that takes the cake is her story about being drugged and raped by Jack Webb of Dragnet. "Yep, I woke up with Joe Friday humping me," says Mamie matter-of-factly when queried about the incident. "He had me tied to a four-poster bed in his house. I was just 20 years old at the time and very naive. It was a very bad scene. Thing is I was willing to give in without him having to do that."
It was Mamie's second date with the steely eyed, crew-cut-sportin' TV fascist. After steaks and cocktails at a restaurant in the Valley, they went back to Webb's pad for more drinks and what Mamie assumed would be a fully consensual sexual encounter. However, according to Mamie, Webb slipped her a Mickey and went to work, strapping her down and banging her while she slipped in and out of consciousness. Then Webb dumped her off at her parents' house. She considered reporting him but wised up pretty quickly. Webb was basically Minister of Propaganda for the LAPD back then. It's not like anyone was going to put his ass in stir.
Fortunately, Mamie can laugh about it now. Webb's dead, and she's not. And she's had—and continues to have—a better sex life than he ever did, if we're to judge by his seduction techniques.
She's safe in OC, she says, and happy. "For me, Hollywood is a haunted town, full of ghosts and memories," she writes at the beginning of Playing the Field. "A lot of blond bombshells didn't make it. They died long before the wrinkles and lines they lived in fear of had a chance to appear on their beautiful faces. A number of them committed suicide. . . . But I couldn't join all those blondes who had taken that route. My will to live transcended Mamie Van Doren, movie star."