Yvonne Craig

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Yvonne Craig
Yvonne Craig 1960.JPG
Craig in 1960
Born (1937-05-16) May 16, 1937 (age 77)
Taylorville, Illinois, US
Years active 1957–1990, 2003 (acting), 2008–present (voice acting)
Spouse(s) Jimmy Boyd (1960-1962) (divorced)
Kenneth Aldrich (1988-?)
Website
http://www.yvonnecraig.com/

Yvonne Joyce Craig (born May 16, 1937) is an American ballet dancer and actress best known for her role as Batgirl from the 1960s TV series Batman, and as the Orion Marta in the Star Trek: The Original Series episode “Whom Gods Destroy”.

Early life and career[edit]

Yvonne Craig was born in Taylorville, Illinois, and grew up in Columbus, Ohio, for the first 14 years of her life.[citation needed] She originally trained to be a ballet dancer and was a member of the corps de ballet of the Ballet Russe de Monte Carlo in the 1950s.[1] Gradually, she moved into acting, and in 1959 appeared in three films: The Young Land, The Gene Krupa Story, and Gidget. She also had a guest role as Beverly Mills in the 1959 episode "Little Miss Wow" of the television series Mr. Lucky. In 1960, she appeared with Bing Crosby in High Time. In the following year, she appeared with Cesar Romero in Seven Women from Hell. Romero would later play the Joker in Batman. Another connection to Batman occurred when Craig appeared in "The Case of the Lazy Lover", a 1958 episode of the television series Perry Mason, which also featured Neil Hamilton as her stepfather. Hamilton would later play her father, Commissioner Gordon, in Batman. Yvonne starred in roles with Elvis Presley in two films: It Happened at the World's Fair (1963) and Kissin' Cousins (1964). She also starred in the cult sci-fi film Mars Needs Women (1966), and appeared in In Like Flint (1967) as a Russian ballet dancer opposite James Coburn.

Move into television[edit]

In the 1960s, with film roles beginning to taper off, she moved into television, appearing in several shows, including The Barbara Stanwyck Show, Death Valley Days, Hennesey, and My Three Sons. Craig appeared five times on The Many Loves of Dobie Gillis, portraying five separate girlfriends for the titular character between 1959 and 1962. One of her more memorable roles came in 1969 when Craig appeared on Star Trek as Marta, a green-skinned Orion slave girl in the third-season episode "Whom Gods Destroy".

In a 1965 episode of The Man from U.N.C.L.E. ("The Brain-Killer Affair"), she helps solve the mystery of a brain-endangering poison.[2] In 1966, she appeared as an U.N.C.L.E. employee in a theatrical film, One Spy Too Many (expanded from a 1965 Season Two episode, "The Alexander the Greater Affair").

In a 1966 episode of The Wild Wild West ("The Night of the Grand Emir"), she plays an assassin who performs an exotic Arabian dance. She also played a US Navy Nurse with exotic Arabian dance skills in an episode of McHale's Navy ("Pumpkin Takes Over", 1965). She appeared in an episode of The Big Valley with Lee Majors and Barbara Stanwyck.

In 1967, She appeared on The Dating Game.

In a 1968 episode of The Ghost & Mrs. Muir ("Haunted Honeymoon"), she plays a bride-to-be stranded overnight at Gull Cottage.

Batman[edit]

Posed shot of Batgirl in body suit, holding the bat wings outstretched.
Yvonne Craig as Batgirl in 1967.

Craig's highest profile would come with the cult 1960s television series Batman as Batgirl (and her alter ego, librarian Barbara Gordon, Commissioner Gordon's daughter). She appeared in the final (1967–1968) season.[3] Batgirl's true identity was unknown to Batman and Robin, and their true identities were unknown to her; only Alfred, the butler for Bruce Wayne/Batman, was aware of Batgirl's identity. Wearing a skin tight costume, she became a teen heartthrob, leading many young men to say "Boing!" when her character appeared on a television episode.

Craig felt some connection to the character and complained to DC Comics about her fate after Barbara Gordon was shot/paralyzed by the Joker in the 1988 graphic novel, Batman: The Killing Joke.[4]

Later career[edit]

After Batman, Craig continued to act sporadically in movies and television. Notably, she appeared in guest roles in Love, American Style (the first episode), Kentucky Jones,The Big Valley, It Takes a Thief, The Mod Squad, Kojak and Emergency!. From 1969 to 1972, she appeared in four episodes of the comedy series Love, American Style. In 1973 she appeared in a season 1 episode of Kojak called 'Dark Sunday' and in 1977 made a guest appearance in The Six Million Dollar Man. She also made appearances as herself on some celebrity editions of Family Feud (1976-1985 version).[5]

She eventually moved into private business. For a time, she was a co-producer of industrial shows, after which she worked successfully in the real estate business. She maintains her own internet website.

Craig appears in the documentary Ballets Russes.[5]

Since 2009, Craig has provided the voice of Grandma on the animated children's show Olivia.[5]

Craig was portrayed by actress Erin Carufel in the made for TV movie Return to the Batcave: The Misadventures of Adam and Burt in 2003.

Selected filmography[edit]

Photo of a woman in a brief gown sitting on the floor with one leg outstretched, toe pointed.
As Orion slave girl "Marta" in the 1968 Star Trek original series episode "Whom Gods Destroy".

Bibliography[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Ballets Russes". Zeitgeist Films. Retrieved 2010-06-17. 
  2. ^ "Yvonne Craig's Film and TV Credits". 1959-07-25. Archived from the original on 2009-10-25. Retrieved 2010-06-17. 
  3. ^ "Yvonne Craig Movies - Yvonne Craig Film - Yvonne Craig TV Shows". TV.com. December 31, 1969. Retrieved June 17, 2010. 
  4. ^ "Up Close & Personal - Interviews". Yvonne Craig. Retrieved October 22, 2012. 
  5. ^ a b c Yvonne Craig at Internet Movie Database

External links[edit]