Gypsy Rose Lee
In Episode # 67 The Sandman Cometh, Catwoman was interviewed by a newswoman who wanted to know how she fell asleep in a storefront window. The newswoman was none other than Gypsy Rose Lee, the most famous stripper to ever grace the stage.
Gypsy Rose Lee had very small role on Batman but I did some research and found out about her interesting life and I thought Id share it with you.
Gypsy Rose Lee was born Rose Louise Hovick in 1914. After her father left her mother and sister, she was thrust in the showbiz world to make a living performing with her sister at the age of 4. Her mother used the children to make a living but her sister was unhappy with that arrangement, so unhappy she eloped with a much older man at the age of thirteen to get away from her mother and show business. Rose Louise and her mother needed an income, they were broke but vaudeville was dying, burlesque was taking its place,it was much more raunchy and usually mob run. At the age of 16 she changed her name to Gypsy Rose Lee and started her stripping career. She was different than most strippers at the time, she was a performer, she talked to her audience while taking off her clothes. Well she became a star and was featured in many popular magazines of the 1930's. In 1936 she joined the most popular show of the time, "The Ziegfeld Follies". She was noticed by Hollywood and she was hired by 20th Century Fox but sadly the censors of the studio wouldn't let her cash in on her popularity and went as far as not allowing her to perform under her own name. She married once then divorced. She also wrote a book called " the G String Murders " which was a successful fiction novel of the time. At 28 she married again. She went to Hollywood and while there became pregnant. This was pretty normal right ? wrong- the father was not her husband but drum roll please- Otto Preminger ( Mr Freeze #2), who she had met at a party ! Well she didn't want to start any rumors so she informed everyone her current husband was the father. She got the divorce papers the day her son Eric was born. Eric was led to believe that her past husband was his father. In 1954 her mother died which was sad but it was a great relief to Gypsy as now she was finally out from under her mothers influence once and for all. In 1956 she retired from stripping and with her mother passed on, she wrote her autobiography which later became a best seller in 1957. It became a smash Broadway show starring Ethel Merman and it made her a living legend.
Well her son now in his 20's pressured her about his father which she had to now come clean. Otto reluctantly adopted him and later was proud to have a son. Gypsy in 1965 got her own show on TV, The Gypsy Rose Lee Show. In 1966 she was one of the performers on the Pruitts of Southampton starring Phyllis Diller and in 1967 she appeared on Batman.
In 1969 she went to Vietnam and performed for the troops this time with clothes. Sadly at the age of 55 and with everything going her way, she was diagnosed with terminal cancer. She tried in vain to fight the battle but on April 26, 1970 she lost her fight and the world lost a real talent. She left an estate worth over a million dollars pretty good for a stripper.:)
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