Sid Haig passed away a couple days ago. I know it’s not the last I’ve seen of him considering my appetite for 70s exploitation films and cheesy 80s Sci Fi and Fantasy. All those movies that endeavour to be strange or deranged with varying degrees of success—when Sid Haig shows up, oft-times unexpectedly, it gets real. Big and a bit strange looking, his performances were often too sharp for the heavies he was cast as. As a henchman in 1973's Coffy, he comes off as way more devious than his bosses.
The film is ultimately about the manipulation of racial politics, Haig comes across as a ruthless opportunist much more effectively than the men supposedly running the show. He makes it seem smarter to be a henchman than a boss as he seems silently to be laughing at the whole process while not really being above it.
Playing odd and memorable supporting characters in so many films, his best known lead role is as Captain Spaulding in Rob Zombie’s series of horror films that began with House of 1000 Corpses. Here his canny sadism is used to terrific effect. A final film in the series was released to a limited theatrical engagement a few weeks ago. Maybe to honour Haig some more theatres will be willing to show it. I’d certainly like to see it. But, as I said at the beginning, I’m sure I’ll be running into Haig again, one way or another.
Twitter Sonnet #1280
Deceptive shelves’ll drop the charging phone.
Substantial boats were never wrought of cheese.
A paper splint invades a glassy bone.
The stars become a shiny fleet of bees.
Returning trains would carry songs and words.
A counterweight ensures a spinning star.
The clouds permit the heavy passing birds.
An albatross could never pass the bar.
A hopeful loop returns the cars to park.
A valid ticket changed for choc’late cash.
The cheapest cup of coffee makes a mark.
The eyes could go to any dollar bash.
The bulging eyes observe as dust escapes.
A lanky shadow passed beyond the drapes.