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Martha Raye
(Benita Bizarre)

Whatever Happened to Martha Raye???

Martha Raye, who played Evil Rock Witch "Benita Bizarre", had an immense career in film and television, both before and after The Bugaloos. Her impressive resume includes dozens of media credits that span over six decades. She even had her own television series, "The Martha Raye Show", in 1955.

Martha's performance as Benita Bizarre couldn't be more perfect. Her over-the-top performances, self-effacing manner, and tounge-in-cheek breaking down of the fourth wall added that much more charm to the character ... you can't help but laugh along with her.

Aside from the Bugaloos, I'm not terribly familiar with the rest of her work ... save for a handful of denture commercials in the 1980s.  

I did find out that she has not one, but *two* stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame ... one for her television career, and one for her movie career. If you happen to be in the Hollywood area, and you want to check them out, they're at: Sadly, Martha passed away in 1994 after a prolonged illness. Her acting career aside, she was also a well known supporter of US Troops from World War II to Vietnam; both on stage as an entertainer, and also as a nurse treating patients and assisting in surgery.

Here are a handful of pages that cover Martha's entertainment and military career: Martha Raye was given the honorary rank of lieutenant colonel in the special forces for her dedication to the troops, and was nicknamed "Colonel Maggie of the Boondocks." A special exception to policy was made so that she could be buried in the military cemetery at Fort Bragg, North Carolina, a request she made two years before her death.

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