Dear Ken: With a new “Dark Shadows” film out, what can you tell us about Tennessee native Lara Parker, who starred in the original TV series?
Parker, 74, who played bewitching Angelique Collins in the 1960s gothic soap opera, was born Mary Lamar Rickey, in Knoxville and grew up in Memphis where she earned a degree in philosophy from Southwestern (now Rhodes College). After acting at the Millbrook Playhouse in Loch Haven, Pa., where she played five leads in six weeks, she tried New York and within two weeks was cast as Angelique on “Dark Shadows” in 1966. She has been a guest on such TV series as “Kung Fu,” “Six Million Dollar Man,” “Police Woman,” “The Rockford Files,” “Kolchak: The Night Stalker,” “Emergency,” “The Incredible Hulk,” “Baretta” and “Highway to Heaven.” Holding a master’s degree in creative writing, she has written several “Dark Shadows” novels and has a cameo appearance in the new movie. The mother of three lives with her husband in the Santa Monica Mountains of California. One bit of trivia: Parker first went to Vassar College, where her roommate was Jane Fonda. She played the wife of Peter Fonda, Jane’s brother, in the 1975 film “Race With the Devil.”