That One Gal (Swingers Edition)

Thank you, Netflix.  Yes, your lack of new releases and DVD-Only versions of some classics frustrates the holy hell out of me.  One thing the Netflix gang does do well is keeping me in touch with some of my casual friends, the ones I haven’t seen in a while.  “Running Scared” (the Billy Crystal one, not the Paul Walker travesty) made it back to the Instant Queue and so did “Swingers.”  Damn, what a great flick.  Hard to imagine that it’s sixteen years old!!  Before Charlie Sheen, if you saw someone wearing a retro silk shirt and a chain wallet, you knew they were money, baby.  And the scene where Mikey calls Nikki’s voicemail…over…and over…is so agonizing.  The fact that–

Wait.  I’m getting ahead of myself.   The point of this blog entry is to underscore the amount of hot tail that you forgot was in this film.  And we might as well start with Nikki.  You remember Nikki, right?

Girl LOVED her some olives!

Yeah, Nikki.  The young lady from whom Mikey FINALLY gets some digits, baby, ’cause he’s this big fuckin’ BEAR, man.  The young lady with whom Mike immediately blows any chance of romance by calling her voicemail (sorry…it was 1996, so technically he called her answering machine) that same night, breaking a cardinal rule about waiting to ring up a beautiful baby.  Guys everywhere know that scene so well…because we’ve all friggin’ DONE IT.  It’s painful.  It’s excruciating.  We feel so bad for Mike, and scream at the screen for him to “stop, for the love of God!”  But part of the magic of that scene is knowing that Nikki is pretty hot.  Not just that she’s cute, but also confident and quirky.  We’d all love a chance to play “bear versus bunny” with her.  She was kind of an alt-chick.  The last person you’d expect to be a professional cheerleader, no matter how pretty she was.


Yep, that’s Nikki.  Rather, that’s actress Brooke Langton portraying Annabelle Farrell, head cheerleader of the Washington Sentinels in the enjoyable TNT network staple “The Replacements.”  Apparently, Brooke has been in plenty of stuff like Melrose Place for years.  I still, however, cannot understand why she hasn’t become a superstar.  She’s gorgeous.  She seems to have a sense of humor, and she can play various types of hot chicks.  I mean, she’d make an excellent Catwoman.  Instead of, well.  Yeah.

Next up?  That one incredibly hot chick from Swingers.  Remember her?

Oh, yeah! Sure! (Actually, no. WHO?!?)

Maybe you know her better as “Girl With Cigar.”

Oh. Wait…that’s the SAME PERSON?!?

Yep.  The actress (who has obviously aged REALLY well) is Blake Lindsley, and she probably gets voicemails meant for Blake Lively.  When that happens, Blake Lindsley probably cries quietly to herself, wondering what might have been.  Even though the character in Swingers is simply credited as “Girl With Cigar” she makes the most of a relatively small role.  And it looked like she was going to be a breakout star, because the year after Swingers, she finally played a supporting character with an actual name…and we saw more of her skin, which is always welcome.

Everyone remembers this scene. EVERYONE.

In Starship Troopers, she was “Katrina” and it looked like she was on her way.  Seriously, in two years she appeared in two of the most-watched flicks of the late-90’s.  And sure enough, she parlayed her hot streak into roles like “School Teacher” in Glimmer Man and “Wife” in Ground Control. Wait…what?!  “Wife?”  That makes “Girl With Cigar” look like “Lady MacBeth!”  It’s too bad, because she seems quirky and fun.  Plus, she’s a natural redhead.  Another ten years and she’s Felicia Day.  Somebody should really give her another shot.  Seriously.

Now it gets serious. Ladies and gentlemen, Heather Graham as Lorraine and her amazing lip-bite.

Grrrrrr…daddy like!

Heather was no rookie when Swingers was released, having appeared in…get this…seventeen movies prior to this one.  That being said, her biggest role in cinema had probably been that of  “Mercedes Lane” in the amazingly over-rated (no, I mean it) Corey and Corey vehicle (I meant that, too.  I’m funny like that) License to Drive.  Of course, unlike Blake’s followup the next year, Heather’s was a blockbuster titled “Boogie Nights” which received three Oscar nominations and featured her full-frontal nudity as the now-famous Rollergirl.  Since then, Heather has appeared in a  bazillion movies, including recent hits like “The Hangover” and an amazingly sexy run on the TV show “Scrubs.” 

Speaking of television, I first discovered young Heather in a role most have forgotten…

Who cares about Laura Palmer? We’ve got Annie Blackburn!!!

Yep. Annie Blackburn from the incredible “Twin Peaks.”  Kids today don’t appreciate how much this show gave them.  Nowadays people flock to cable shows like The Walking Dead or Sons of Anarchy for their weekly dose of “WHAT THE FUCK JUST HAPPENED?!?!”  But that just really didn’t happen prior to Twin Peaks.  It’s really fodder for a whole different blog entry, but imagine people meeting in coffee shops (this was pre-internet, people) to discuss last week’s episode of “M*A*S*H” or “Starsky and Hutch.”  It just didn’t happen.  And for me, Heather Graham’s Annie was the most amazing character of all, because she was so goddam beautiful with those Bette Davis eyes (THAT’S why she was in Swingers, I’ll betcha money) but she retained this air of innocence that was very rare in that sick, surreal setting.  Sigh.  STILL the best lip-bite ever.