Geesh. Had a rough afternoon yesterday. I mentioned the day before that I had to get a shot (vax), and woo-hoo did it make me tired. I had to catch some extra Zzzz's in the afternoon after running a few errands during the day. The pharmacist had warned me previously that it could send me for a small loop, and it certainly did. I think I'm on the mend for today. At least, I don't feel as sluggish as I did yesterday, so that small improvement alone is a very, very, very good thing.
But let's dispense with the personal information, shall we? That's probably TMI for a good deal of you anyway. You're really here for the trivia, and I have a bit to say about a few items on the agenda, so buckle up.
Well ... back in the days of my youth (that's right, kids, grandpa's talking again) you couldn't get any more groundbreaking that the work of Buster Crabbe. I know, I know, I know. Some of you grew up with George Reeves as Superman, putting him on the Mount Rushmore of Science Fiction. A goodly portion of you grew up with Mark Hamill embodying the likeness of Luke Skywalker aboard George Lucas' impressive Star Wars saga. For those of you who don't know Crabbe's name, he played both Flash Gordon and Buck Rogers in serials from the 1930's, and -- like it or not -- these were the staples of my youth.
(No, no, no: I wasn't there to see them premiere in theaters. I'm not that old.)
Crabbe was the ultimate space hero for the earliest generation of SciFi and Fantasy fans. Special effects and costuming being what they were in that bygone era, the man had to truly 'sell the sizzle' of these distant worlds, and the entertainment industry couldn't have had a better icon for such space adventures. I was first aware of them when they were only one small part -- an entertaining segment -- of a popular children's show out of Chicago in the 1970's; and I couldn't wait for each chapter to unfurl before my eyes over breakfast each day they aired. Eventually I discovered the full installments when they'd play on syndicated television, and I think it was at that time that I knew I was forever hooked on going where no man had gone before.
Every now and then, these serials do turn up once more in rotation on Turner Classic Movies on Saturday mornings. Very early, I might add. For what it's worth (if you're reading TCM), I think you should just make each and every Saturday morning a Buster Crabbe event -- leave them on in perpetuity -- because who else watches TV at that time anyway? I know it would be a staple for this household.
Wherever you are in the cosmos, Mr. Crabbe, Happy Birthday to you! You made a believer out of so many of us!
Ahh, this guy was so, so, so talented. As a actor, he may've had a 'type' of role that he was best at, but I always thought he was a bit of a chameleon, you know? The kind of talent who could rather effortlessly slip into any skin and inhabit it like no other could. Granted, he probably is best known for the kinda of driven personae he personified aboard 1987's seminal RoboCop -- arguably, one of Science Fiction's greatest films ever -- and he did that work so well that I think it did end up seeing him kinda/sorta revisit that role in lesser films and TV shows across his career. While that happens in Hollywood, I'd still insist Ferrer did some incredible work with other parts, so readers are encouraged to check out his full portfolio at their leisure.
In fact, the man did some of his best work on the small screen when he turned up as FBI Special Agent Albert Rosenfeld aboard David Lynch's phenomenal Twin Peaks. His no-nonsense Fed always found himself at odds with the locals of the said small city, and it was the source of many, many, many great moments and laughs even. (Honestly, I don't think I've ever laughed so hard at a TV show as I did with Ferrer's bits here.)
Regular readers to this space know that I have a penchant for detective stories, too, and Ferrer even made an interesting foray into that realm: 1998's Where's Marlowe? is a clever but flawed look at a big city private investigations firm that can't quite get its act together that I picked up on home video way back in the day ... and I did so only because it boasts Ferrer in the guise of the traditional private eye on the cover. It's a good film -- not a great one -- but like so many flicks I think it's made better by the quality of Ferrer's performance in it, so I encourage fans of noirish comedies to check that one out if interested.
Now, of course, there's more -- isn't there always? Have you folks not yet learned that invaluable lesson? I've done some good work over the years chocking full each and every day with the kind of SciFi, Fantasy, and Horror goodness you would expect from a site celebrating such things, but I can't expose each of the highlights for you in this space. What kind of host would that make me? The beauty is in the discovery, and this is the time wherein I encourage each of you to head on over to the Daily Citation Page and see just for yourself what makes this day unique from all others.
Here's the important link:
As always, my friends ... thank you for reading ... thank you for sharing ... thank you for being a fan ... and live long and prosper!