When I started getting interested in b-movies from the 1950s, one of the very first movies I watched was Monster Robot. That was many, many moons ago. It did two things for me, made me realize how much I loved the baddest of the bad and introduced me to Claudia Barrett.
If you are unaware of what Robot Monster is, it was made in 1953 and has one of the most iconic monster costumes in the history of monster costumes. It also stars Claudia Barrett as Alice. The Ro-man is sent to earth to destroy humanity and runs afoul when he becomes attracted to the human Alice. She is the eldest daughter of a surviving scientist, and he refuses to harm her. The movie itself if pretty dark, especially if you pay attention to the actual story. Claudia is perfection and am sure was and still is the iconic b-movie goddess.
When I heard of her death (April 30, 2021), I read many tributes to her and in the eyes of her friends, family and colleagues she was and absolutely wonderful, giving person and loved by many.
Claudia’s career was mostly in television, but for b-movie fans, she will always be remembered for Robot Monster. Claudia loved being an actress and even after her agent told her not to take the now iconic role in Robot Monster, she accepted the offer anyway. Here is a quote from her. “When you decide to make a movie, the decision is made for various reasons: money, fame, or working with a particular star or director. I just wanted to act. I was a professional actress for 14 years, and I really loved the business. And Robot Monster was a movie I enjoyed making.”
In 1964, Claudia Barrett retired from acting, but stayed in show business, working in her dream job for the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. She passed away from natural causes at the age of 91.
I think a fun way to toast Claudia is to give Robot Monster a watch!
(this isn’t the greatest copy, if you find a free/better copy, please let me know)
Each month I run a b-movie night called Killer B Cinema. Join Lizzie Violet & Zoltan Du Lac for a monthly evening of b-moves from the 1950s to 1990s! Please follow us on Instagram and Facebook!