Yardena went from soldier to Addams Family guest star
She said not even being on a battlefield was scarier than her stage fright performing on the kooky show.
In 1965, Gomez Addams was unpredictably placed between two women in an episode called "Morticia’s Dilemma."
Critics at the time said, though Jones was marvelous as ever as Morticia, many scenes in this episode were stolen by guest star Yardena, a previously unknown Israeli actor who played Morticia’s rival for Gomez’s heart.
The plot found a wealthy Spanish father dropping in on The Addams Family to follow through on a decades-old promise that Gomez would marry his daughter Consuella.
As Consuella, Yardena’s funniest scenes might have been with the flamenco dancer that Morticia hires to woo her away from wanting to marry Gomez.
To audiences, Yardena was a new face. She’d never acted before, mainly because she’d spent the previous eight years on the battlefields as a soldier in the Israeli army.
Once she was released from service, she nervously accepted the role on The Addams Family, admitting to The Courier-Journal in 1965 that she "got scared when she was offered a job in Hollywood."
Luckily, her stage fright didn’t stop her from giving a marvelous performance, proving she’s made of soldier stuff, easily conquering her fears.
Not much is known about Yardena, as she only ever acted in one other role after The Addams Family. Her final onscreen appearance was on the short-lived series Mona McCluskey in 1965.
But The Courier-Journal notes that she was named for the Jordan River, and at the time she was acting, she was married in the real world to a real estate broker (not pining for Gomez to fulfill his fictitious obligations).
After 1965, Yardena stepped right back out of the spotlight. All we have to remember her by are TV critics praising her brief flash of genius on The Addams Family, proclaiming she made "Morticia’s Dilemma" one of the most entertaining episodes of all time.
But don’t worry, Jones could never be completely overshadowed.
At one point in the episode, Morticia relieves some tension by snapping Gomez’s cigar out of his mouth using a bullwhip.