Latest Angel Fails to Break the Jinx

Tanya Roberts, whose lusty humour makes her the most down-to-earth Charlie's Angel, could also be the last of the angelic detectives. With rumours that the series is on the skids the American network which owns rights to the show has decided to give it a "temporary rest."

Problems with the jinxed series have spilled into Tanya's private life, with one magazine quoting her as saying she has agreed to part from her husband - a common Angels' setback. But the same magazine said Tanya came from a top Toronto family. She prefers this version of her life.

Once there was a pretty little girl who lived in an old, run-down house. She dreamed of becoming a star. So, she ran away at age 15, supported herself selling dancing lessons to "old guys" who lusted after her, then she fell in love and secretly married.

Every chance she got, she hung out in theatres, endlessly reading plays and trying for the acting breaks that never came. Finally, high on hope and low on cash, she went to Hollywood, via New York, got herself on fil, caught the eye of a powerful producer and was cast to star in one of TV's most famous programmes. This is what happened to beautiful Tanya Roberts.

But will Charlie's latest Angel live happily ever after? Will fame and fortune throw her like the other fallen Angels onto a treadmill of bad parts, broken marriages and the humiliation of diminishing audiences?

Whatever else is in doubt, one fact remains resoundingly clear - the show, producer or the situation that could dim the exuberant spirit of Tanya Roberts simply does not exist.

She speaks from the heart, laying sentences like bricks: "I will be married forever. I am a competent actress who is going to be really great."

Tanya grew up on the streets of the Bronx, New York, and at 15 moved with her family to Toronto, Canada. At an age when most girls are looking forward to school dances and friendship rings, Tanya dropped out of school, set up house, got the studio dancing job and secretly married another school drop-out. The stormy marriage lasted seven months and was a relationship which Tanya describes as turning from passionate love to intense hatred.

Tanya's striking looks won her offers for commercials - selling everything from sunglasses to aspirin. They also attracted Barry Roberts, psychologist, now turned Hollywood script writer, the next man that Tanya would marry.

Tanya shrugs off charges that Charlie's Angels requires a minimum of acting ability, that it is really light-weight and that is has a history of landing otherwise promising careers in the dumps.

"This," she says flatly, "is the best thing that ever happened to me. I love to work. And I really like the show. Look at the exposure! This, after all, is showbusiness. You must be seen and recognized. I expect to be offered the type of work that I'll need to build a solid career on as a direct result of my association with Charlie's Angels."

She is reminded that other Angels had the same career plan but fell flat on their cute little behinds. Farrah Fawcett's work now attracts an audience that would have constituted a small cocktail gathering when she was an Angel. Kate Jackson is doing even less and Shelley Hack, who Tanya replaces, has sunk, virtually without trace.

In the romance department Angels have suffered even more. Farrah, Cheryl, Kate and Jaclyn have all seen the breakdown of their marriages - although Cheryl has given wedded bliss another try, this time with tall, handsome musician Brian Russell.

When Tanya dreamed of becoming a star, she did not come to Hollywood for the glamour - and certainly not to watch her marriage dissolve. She came for the real gold - the heady heights of success.

She says: "I don't care if I'm not driving a Rolls Royce. I  love my Jeep. But I'm sure if I want a Rolls in the next couple of years, I'll be able to get one."

"I'm going to make it big in showbiz. Just like I always knew I would."

BACKGROUND CHECK

by Colin Dangaard The Australian Women's Weekly April 15, 1981

"This is the best thing that ever happened to me. I love to work. And I really like the show. Look at the exposure! This, after all, is showbusiness. You must be seen and recognized. I expect to be offered the type of work that I'll need to build a solid career on as a direct result of my association with Charlie's Angels."

Tanya Roberts