Over the past weekend, VH1 Classic ran both of the “Fletch” movies back-to-back. I fondly recalled how funny Chevy Chase could be back in the day. I also remembered how my teenage years were made considerably easier by the likes of Dana Wheeler-Nicholson playing the part of Gail Stanwyk. Soooo gorram cute. And then POOF! She all but disappeared until she showed up in the amazing “Tombstone” as Wyatt’s common-law wife. (She looooved the laudanum. Loved it!) And then, BAM! “Fletch Lives” hit me right in the pelvis with Julianne Phillips, Bruce Springsteen’s ex-wife. A model-actress! What a concept! So, yes. The eighties were a great time to be a young man who had an overabundance of hormones and tissue paper and for whom no internet had yet been invented. Here, then are my top-seven 80’s Screen Queens (read: masturbatory material.) They’re not the best-selling or highest-grossing actresses, mind you…most of them fall into the “Oh, yeah! I remember that chick!” category. But they’re all mine, bub.
#7. Kelli Maroney
She was in that one movie: Specifically, she was in “Night of the Comet” which remains one of the best (and most-overlooked) post-apocalypse survival style movies ever. It was funny, it was sweet…and it was the only movie to land TWO ladies on this list! Kelli played a submachinegun-wielding cheerleader wayyyyy before it was cool. (Eat it, “Sucker Punch!” Oh, and as cute as she was in “Comet” she also looked like this in real life.
Schwing factor: *** She would’ve garnered more, but her on-screen sister, Catherine Mary Stewart upstaged her (while showing less skin!)
#6. Corrine Bohrer
She was in that one movie: Speaking of skin, Corrine makes the list on the strength of her performance (ahem…full frontal) in the craptastic golf flick “Dead Solid Perfect.” Don’t worry, nobody else has seen it, either. If you remember Corrine, it’s probably from “Vice Versa” or the short-lived “Flash” television series. But she didn’t get naked in those.
Schwing factor: **** Cute body. And pubic hair. (Hey, it was the eighties.)
#5. Kimberly Foster
She was in that one movie: Everyone remembers Kimberly from John Cusack’s second-best 80’s teenage romp, “One Crazy Summer” and she was pretty damned hot in that one. Her not-as-vacant-as-you’d-like-to-think Cookie Campbell makes a teasing play for Hoops and has a douchebag for a boyfriend. A blond douchebag. That’s the only flavor douchebag they had in the eighties. However, the reason she makes the top-five is a little-known movie from 1988 called “It Takes Two.” In that one, she plays a femme fatale that cons a groom-to-be into buying a fancy sports car that ends up being a lemon and he has to go and confront the blah blah blah wedding day blah blah Barry Corbin from “Northern Exposure blah blah…anyway, she’s hot.
Schwing factor: *** She’s just fucking beautiful. Cute hair, sexy glances…she should’ve been a major star.
#4. Catherine Mary Stewart
She was in that one movie: Well, pick one. Catherine was a B-movie mainstay, appearing in everything from “The Last Starfighter” to “Nightflyers” to the amazing Bruce Dern post-apocalyptic masterpiece “World Gone Wild”.” Ah, but THEN she appeared in a little film called “Weekend At Bernie’s.” In the aforementioned “Night of The Comet” she set the standard for beautiful women in peril, and Hollywood has been riding that train ever since. That chick from “LOST” would not come across as tough-yet-nurturing (and hot) and that chick from “The Walking Dead” who had to shoot her own sister down when she got all zombiefied (oops…meant to type SPOILER ALERT) would be just another woman trying to find her way in a “World Gone Wild.” See what I did there? Also, Catherine gets bonus points for A) Pioneering the big-hair/teal blouse/pushed-up-sleeves look that you saw everywhere in the eighties and B) Being one of two chicks on this list with a three-part name that includes a variation of the name “Stewart.” Oooo! Who else? Tell us, Uncle Turner! Who else!
Patience, my children…
Schwing factor: *** She’s beautiful, smart, and tough. That’s a woman, right there.
3. Deborah Foreman
She was in that one movie: Everyone discovered Deb in the Nicolas Cage classic “Valley Girl.” Sometimes, when I want to feel ancient, I remind myself the movie came out in NINETEEN-EIGHTY-FUCKING-THREE. Deb also starred in her own vehicle, the rom-com “My Chauffeur.” (Get it? Her own VEHICLE! I can do this all day.) But the main reason, other than being one of those rare ladies that can pull off what I call the “innocent slut” routine, is her performance in a movie that literally changed my life: “Real Genius.” Her part is limited…but when she asks Chris Knight “can you hammer a six-inch spike though a board with your penis?” well…that’s it, boys. Game. Set. Match.
Schwing factor: **** Pouty lips, sparkling eyes, a cute little overbite…and a dirty mouth. Meee-yow!
2. Lea Fucking Thompson
She was in that one movie: Let’s just pretend that Lea DIDN’T star in one of the best-loved sci-fi comedies (a trilogy, no less) of all time. She still gets credit for the original “Red Dawn” as well as, oh, I don’t know…how about Space Camp, All The Right Moves, Some Kind of Wonderful, JAWS 3!?!? and the reason she makes it to the runner-up spot on this list: ladies and gentlemen, I give you the STAR of the epic George Lucas-produced masterpiece…”Howard the Duck!” And by “star” I mean, of course, LEA’S ASS!! My God…it isn’t the roundest or shapeliest. And it’s not even naked. Just a pair of cotton panties as she slinks across the bed. But Gott DAMN could she slink. Gott. Damn. A friend of mine once remarked that he wore out the “pause” button on his VCR because of that one scene. Again, people, remember: Teenage boys. No internet porn. We made do.
Schwing factor: ***** Dat ass.
1. Mary Stuart Masterson
She was in that one movie: Along with Lea Thompson, her co-star in “Some Kind of Wonderful,” you could say that she has been a gainfully employed actress ever SINCE that 1987 classic. But let’s be honest, most of her roles have been in chick-friendly fare like “Friend Green Tomatoes” but she did show up in the girls-with-guns western “Bad Girls” with Madeline Stowe, Andie MacDowell, and Drew Barrymore, so she proved that she can still do the sexy. As Watts, the craps-shooting tomboy sidekick-turned-girlfriend, she made dudes want to cut their girlfriend’s hair off. They wanted their chick to wear fringed fingerless gloves. They wanted a wise-cracking, beer-drinking, rock-drumming girl that would have their collective backs when things got rough. They wanted Watts. You can hear her echo in iCarly’s Sam, “Firefly’s” Zoe, and Vasquez from “Aliens.” She was bad ass. She OWNS the number one spot as a result.
Schwing factor: N/A It’s tough for me to assign a “sexy” factor to the woman I once fantasized about marrying. No joke. Had I been in Hollywood in the 80’s, there would’ve been a stalking charge filed against me. I’m telling you, it was LOVE!! AND I KNEW SHE’D LOVE ME IF SHE JUST GOT TO KNOW ME!! WE’D BE HAPPY FOREVER!!!!!