Kitty Carlisle wasn’t always kitsch. I think that her transformation from Socialite to Kitsch-alite came when she appeared as a regular panelist on the old black and white To Tell The Truth TV game show. Evening gown (always a V neckline) and pearls became her uniform as she asked such questions as “Do you think it would be hot enough to fry an egg on the hood of my Rolls Royce?” All this pretension on a show that gave you a whole $25 for each of the panelists who didn’t guess right. She became a caricature of the 1950s-1960s New York socialite, and thus earned the right to be featured as the first Kitsch-alite in Allee’s Kitsch hall of fame.
Don’t get me wrong, I love Kitty, and as a little kid watching To Tell The Truth back in the 1960s, she made a huge impression on me. This photo of Miss Kitty Carlisle was taken in her Manhattan home a short while before she left this earth back in 2007. She was 92, and to the end ever the Kitsch-alite.