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A Woman Accused (1977)

Many many years ago . . . . before Ellen and Ann . . . . before Melissa and Julie . . . . when it seemed only to be Cris and Tret . . . .

Columbia Pictures and The Writers Company decided to produce a movie for NBC television that would portray lesbians as other than sexual predators or jailhouse dykes. The result was A Woman Accused (also titled In the Glitter Palace).

While “A Woman Accused” may have become a bit dated in the years since Ellen’s on-screen kiss, it did hit on what even today are such timely issues as The Closet and child custody  . . . . as well as coming out in the bar scene with the accompanying drug use.

Both Howard Duff (the murder suspect's hypocritical father) and Anthony Zerbe (the villainous blackmailer) had previously co-starred with Tisha in the made-for-TV movie Snatched (1973), while Barbara Hershey (playing the lead as Chad Everett's ex-girlfriend) and Tisha would be reunited in 1999 in Breakfast of Champions.

While sometimes described as a "lesbian murder mystery," there really is no "mystery" at all since the killer's identity is revealed in the movie's very beginning. A Woman Accused falls more into Tisha's "socially relevant" screen appearances like A Death of Innocence. Although Tisha has only a couple of minutes of on-screen time, her portrayal of the lesbian flowerchild Grace Mayo on the psych ward after a bad acid trip is one of the finest acting performances of her career.

Be aware that the film clip for A Woman Accused is 1.17MB – not an instantaneous download even on a broadband connection. Tisha's performance is well worth waiting for, but you will have to be especially patient if your connection is a dial-up modem.

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