Batman and Dick Van Dyke Show Actress Joan Staley Dead at 79

Actress Joan Staley has passed away at the age of 79, announced that she died earlier this week on Sunday after suffering heart failure at Henry Mayo Newhall Hospital in Valencia, California. Staley is known for her roles in The Dick Van Dyke Show, 77 Sunset Strip, and The Ghost and Mr. Chicken opposite Don Knotts. But DC Comics fans might recognize her from her role as Okie Annie in the classic Batman series with Adam West and Burt Ward.

In the Batman show, Staley played one of the head gang members who backed up the Western-themed criminal Shame, appearing in the two-part episodes of "Come Back Shame" and "It's How You Play the Game."

The late Staley was the daughter of an armed forces chaplain and moved around the world for much of her young life. She eventually married TV director Charles Staley before finding steady gigs in show business.

The actress has spoken out about the roles she was frequently casted in, explaining in a 1964 interview that she never intended to be typecasted.

"I've made a career of playing an undulating blonde in tight dresses," Staley explained (via THR). "It isn't that I wanted that brassy sexpot image, but that's the image producers feel you project when you're, well, blonde and shapely."


She married her second husband Dale Sheets in 1967, and the two ran the talent agency International Ventures Inc.

Staley is survived by her husband Dale and her children Dina, Linda, Victoria, Patricia, Sherrye, Stephanie, and Greg, as well as 10 grandchildren and 26 great grandchildren.