Friday, December 12, 2008
Bettie Page died at age 85 last night in Los Angeles. An icon of the sexual revolution, the pinup icon was hospitalized three weeks ago with pneumonia, but she fell into a coma after a heart attack last week. She is most famous for appearing as Playboy's January 1955 Playmate of the Month.
During her modeling heyday from 1949 to 1957, Bettie Page was photographed 20,000 times in a variety of poses, in bikinis, nude, or in skimpy outfits. Controversially, Page was also "photographed prancing around with a whip, spanking other women, even being hog-tied."
Before she became a pinup model, Page tried her hand at teaching and secretarial work. Later in life, she mostly disappeared from public view, suffering a nervous breakdown, emerging as a born-again Christian, and enjoying a stay at the Patton State Hospital for a decade for stabbing her landlady.
After her release in 1992, Bettie Page's second career as a pop icon was fully underway with biographies, movies, and even action figures based on her. A biographical film, "The Notorious Bettie Page", with Gretchen Mol was released in 2005.
Bettie Page Photos
Bettie Page Playboy Playmate
Bettie Page Holding Whip
Bettie Page on the Beach