Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

The Pain Behind the Smiles; PICK OF THE DAY KAREN CARPENTER: GOODBYE TO LOVE Channel 5, 9pm

Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

The Pain Behind the Smiles; PICK OF THE DAY KAREN CARPENTER: GOODBYE TO LOVE Channel 5, 9pm

Article excerpt

LET'S get one thing established straight away. The Carpenters are cool. I don't care that their music was "easy-listening", and ok, they weren't exactly Lennon and McCartney or Simon and Garfunkel, but American siblings Karen and Richard knew how to record a catchy hit. And around 80 million agreed with me, so there.

But, love them or loathe them, most are familiar with the tragedy behind the 70s pop icons, with Karen a victim of anorexia nervosa.

The eating disorder eventually led to her death from heart failure in 1983 - she was just 32.

And it seems that behind the all-American smiles, there were other difficulties for the singing pair, who notched up hit after chart-topping hit.

This fascinating, if slightly ham-fisted, documentary delves into Karen's often difficult relationships with her mother Agnes, described here as "aggressive", as well as with older brother and producer Richard.

Interestingly, after Karen's death, the New York Times noted the two things she valued most in the world - her voice and her mother's love - were both exclusively Richard's property. …

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