Our Favorite TV Actresses of the 70's
Written by Rebeka Knott
The 1970’s was an extremely notable time in America. Times were changing. Some felt that it was for the better and some for the worse; but everybody agreed that things were changing. One huge change that came about was in television programming.
America was starting to let its hair down just a bit. It didn’t happen overnight but the 70’s marked a dramatic change in television programing. Along with the changing attitudes in America, came bolder and more provocative television shows.
Television producers had made the decision to get with the times. Before long, beautiful, and purposefully chosen, sexy women began appearing on prime-time television. Some were more provocative than others; but sexy nonetheless.
In early television shows, American women were portrayed as proper wives and mothers. Most women on television had traditional roles and would never think to speak a cross word or show any skin. Enter the 70’s; and all bets were off!
Below are, by no means all, but some of the sexiest American actresses that played a huge part in ushering in a new spin on television programming.
Barbara Feldon may be an unlikely nominee for a sexy television actress but don’t count her out just yet. As Secret Agent 99, she was a class act. She is probably best recognized for that role where she played opposite Don Ada,ms in the hit sitcom, Get Smart. She was beautiful and curvy in all the right places and there was no doubt that she was all woman; even holding her own against the evil forces of K.O.A.S. After the hit series finished filming in 1970, Feldon went on to appear in other television shows including The Name of the Game and McMillan & Wife.
Have you ever heard the saying that, "beauty is in the eye of the beholder?" Well, the sexy television actresses of the 70's were definitely a sight to behold!
Jaclyn Smith is best known for her portrayal of Kelly Garrett alongside Fawcett and Jackson in Charlie’s Angels. She was the only one of the original three angels to remain on the hit series for the entire run. In addition to being easy on the eyes, Smith is the total package with brains and a keen business sense. Super sexy and smart; what a great combination!
Victoria Principal got her start in film in the early 70’s, starting in roles with high profile actors. She landed her big break when she was cast as Pamela Ewing on the hit nighttime soap opera, Dallas, in the late 70’s. Following Dallas, Principal went on to make, and produce, several made for television movies.
Suzanne Somers made her acting debut in the late 60’s and early 70’s on talk shows and small parts in films, including American Graffiti. Somers appeared in The Rockford Files, The Six Million Dollar Man and Magnum Force. Her role in Magnum Force was as a topless pool girl, for which she was not credited. In 1977, when Somers landed the role of Chrissy, the dizzy blond, on Three’s Company, she became a household name. Make no mistake though, she was anything BUT a dizzy blond!
Loni Anderson’s best-known television role is most likely as Jennifer Marlow on WKRP in Cincinnati. Anderson was sexy, sultry and breathtakingly beautiful. She had her boss, Mr. Carlson, wrapped around her little finger and who could blame him? Anderson was one of the most prominent sex symbols of her time. She exuded the same confidence and sex appeal as Marilyn Monroe and Jayne Mansfield with a hint of innocence. Her appearance was nearly flawless.
Yvonne Craig was famous for portraying Batgirl, on the Batman TV series in the 60’s and a bat never looked so sexy! In her role on the show, she was a no-nonsense crime fighter that teamed up with the Dynamic Duo but could really hold her own. She was among the growing number of sexy actresses who were considered more than just a pretty face! After the Batman series ended, Craig appeared in guest roles on popular shows including Love, American Style, It Takes a Thief, The Mod Squad, Kojak, The Six Million Dollar Man and Emergency.
Elizabeth Montgomery was definitely not what most people picture when they think of a witch. Montgomery portrayed Samantha Stephens on the sitcom, Bewitched, from 1964 to 1972. Although she dressed modestly for the part, she couldn’t hide that knockout figure.
Lindsay Wagner made a name for herself as Jamie Sommers, on The Six Million Dollar Man, starring Lee Majors. Wagner then went on to star in her own TV series, The Bionic Woman, earning an Emmy Award for, “Outstanding Lead Actress in a Dramatic Role.” She was a pop culture icon in the 70’s.
Sally Field started her television career in shows including Gidget, The Girl with Something Extra and The Flying Nun. She definitely wasn’t a “nun” and wanted people to know it! She did her best to shake that “good girl” image and went on to star opposite Burt Reynolds in Smokey and the Bandit. Since then she has appeared in several films, earning herself an Academy Award.
Marilu Henner was probably best known for her role as taxi cab driver, Elaine Nardo on Taxi. Henner was pretty, witty and was able to hold her own working with a group of “rough around the edges” men in a dirty, dreary garage. She was like the curvy, sexy girl next door. Henner is one of those women who carried herself in such a way that it added to her sex appeal.
Remember that super-hot, sexy blue dress?
Farrah Fawcett was a fresh faced blond beauty when she hit the television screen in the late 60’s. She got her start appearing in television commercials. The 70’s was a big decade for Fawcett when she landed roles on Harry O, The Six Million Dollar Man and then Charlie’s Angels. Fawcett’s role as Jill Monroe on Charlie’s Angels was the role that boosted her career although it wasn’t necessarily her favorite role. Back in the 70’s, women everywhere aspired to be more like Farrah Fawcett. She was perky, beautiful, sexy and had gorgeous hair!
Kate Jackson is another classic beauty who is unmistakable as Sabrina Duncan on Charlie’s Angels. She always had a timeless beauty and soulful eyes that just captivated audiences. After leaving her role as an angel, Jackson went on to make several films.
The three sexy angels!
Susan Dey will forever go down in history as Laurie Partridge from The Partridge Family, although she also appeared in The Streets of San Francisco, S.W.A.T. and Hawaii Five-O. She had an innocent look about her with pouty lips that drove the guys crazy!
Lynda Carter really needs no introductions. She held audiences captive with her role as Diana Prince on the hit series, Wonder Woman. In that role she was able to showcase all of her best features. She was a beautiful, busty, smart and sexy superheroine. Although Carter was a favorite of the men, women loved her too!
Men everywhere would have given a limb to be caught in Wonder Woman's lasso!
Judy Landers was another familiar and pretty face on television during the 70’s. She appeared in hit television series including Happy Days, The Jeffersons, Love Boat, Charlies’ Angels and Vega$. She had that signature look that was so popular at the time. She had beautiful blond locks and a killer figure.
Sally Struthers, as Gloria Bunker Stivic, was the poster child for women of the 70’s. Her progressive thinking never failed to get her father’s blood boiling on All in the Family. She was a blond, spunky, little firecracker; all 5’1 of her. Sometimes the best things come in small packages. Part of her sex appeal was that she was so outspoken on current social issues in the 70's.
Angie Dickenson was another one of those no-nonsense, sexy, blond bombshells. She portrayed Sergeant Pepper Anderson on hit television series, Police Woman. This particular role earned her three Emmy Awards and a Golden Globe. Her character was all woman and all business.
Working undercover was Pepper’s specialty and she always looked so hot doing it!
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