There is probably one scene in 1981’s The Fan that queer horror freaks remember even more than all those glorious Lauren Bacall production numbers. Of course, that is the moment when Michael Biehn’s twisted Douglas Breen picks up a similar looking man (Terrence Marinan) in a gay bar. While problematic, showing another instance of society’s perception of the homosexual male as a victim, it also truly resonated with a generation who wasn’t used to representation of any sort on the silver screen.
Playing, perhaps ironically, in the background as this deadly seduction occurs is the Junior Walker & the All Stars’ version of How Sweet It Is (To Be Loved By You). H-m-m…maybe not, Michael! But there is one thing we can all probably agree on. Chaka Khan’s version of the song, famously performed by everyone from Marvin Gaye to James Taylor, is truly killer – in the best possible way!
Until the next time, SWEET love and pink GRUE, Big Gay Horror Fan!
She had one of the most distinctive speaking voices of all time and the irreplaceable Lauren Bacall also used those smoky tones to subtle singing effect in such Broadway musicals as Applause and Woman of the Year.
Best known for her alluring performances in a series of noir classics with (her beloved, first husband) Humphrey Bogart, Bacall jumped on the early ‘80s slasher bandwagon by playing a theatrical diva whose life and limb (and sequin suits) were threatened by a smooth and menacing stalker (of the self loathing variety) in the underperforming (but twisted and enjoyable) The Fan.
Of course, here she is in complete control, singing I Wrote the Book (to a devoted Wayne Newton and others) from Woman of the Year, a role that won her a second Tony award.
…and if that doesn’t make you want to do a soft shoe, in the afterlife, with an old school diva…then nothing will.
Until the next time – SWEET love and pink GRUE, Big Gay Horror Fan!