Just shy of cracking the century, the largely-famous-for-being-famous Zsa Zsa Gabor has passed away from a heart attack after being bedridden for nearly five years due to a variety of health issues. Born in Budapest, Gabor (no, she wasn’t in the TV sitcom, Green Acres – that was her lookalike sister, Eva, who passed away in 1995) became a famous talk show guest, cracking jokes about her nine (yes, nine!) marriages and her fondness for the high life.
Renowned for her heavily accented English (she endearingly and flamboyantly called everyone “darling”, which came out “dah-link”), and once constant presence in the gossip pages, Gabor is now being frequently eulogised as the progenitor of today’s celebrity-obsessed media culture, with that all-too-familiar name, “Kardashian”, unfortunately appearing in most of the Zsa Zsa obituaries that have flooded the internet.
Passing away and then having your name lumped in with that lot is doubly cruel – Gabor was actually a witty, smart, and funny on-screen presence (yes, she had some actual form of talent, unlike most of today’s inexplicable media stars), and while her fame was self-generating, she did have some impressive cinematic achievements on her resume, with the occasional actress boasting appearances in top-tier films like John Huston’s Moulin Rouge (1952); the musical, Lili (1953); the 1958 camp classic, Queen Of Outer Space; and, yes, Orson Welles’ cult masterpiece, Touch Of Evil (1958). And that’s not even taking into account the many sitcoms and series (including Gilligan’s Island, Mr. Ed, and Batman!) on which she appeared, often playing herself.
It vas a good innings, dah-link. Vale Zsa Zsa Gabor…