Back in the Nixon, Ford and Carter era I had a thing for Angel Tompkins. This was partly due to the fact that she’s my type (blond, great eyes, WASPy) but mostly because she’d delivered a mature, grounded, open-hearted performance as a cheating wife in Mel Stuart and Robert Kaufman‘s I Love My Wife, a minor but decent dramedy about a young married doctor (Elliott Gould) who cats around.

My memory is a bit hazy but Tompkins’ character, Helene Donnelly, was listlessly married to Dabney Coleman‘s Frank Donnelly, and her affair with Gould’s Dr. Richard Burrows was about more than just gymnastic distraction — she was all in, and you could really sense the unambiguous depth of feeling. It was Tompkins’ best role and finest-ever performance — nothing else she did came close.

The deal was doubly sealed after I spoke with Tompkins following a Rear Window screening on the Universal lot, sometime in late ’83 or early ’84. Okay, she struck me as a glib conversational surfer that night but almost everyone is like that after a drink or two. And perhaps my recollection of I Love My Wife is overly generous, but it wasn’t half bad.

Tompkins’ career hung in for a while but gradually tapered off. She married Ted Lang, described on her Wiki page as a film and comedy writer slash venture capitalist. She gradually became a political conservative (no problem) and then a Trumpie (good effing God).

And then today I saw this. Obviously not a statement that anyone with any sort of informed, straight-arrow perception or sense of rationality would share with a straight face. I’m distressed that Joe Biden didn’t pass the baton, but Tompkins seems to honestly believe that a blend of Satanic derangement syndrome and an anti-democratic agenda is the way to go, and it’s mystifying that an actress who seemed to have some sort of basic humanistic grasp of things way back when…it’s odd to think of a person going this far around the bend and becoming this fruit-loopy.