Sunday, May 15, 2005

“You and your hobbies!”

The Movie: Muppet Treasure Island, 1996 (Jerry Juhl, Kirk R. Thatcher, and James V. Hart, screenwriters, based on the novel by Robert Louis Stevenson; Brian Henson, dir.)
Who says it: Steve Whitmire as the voice of Rizzo the Rat
The context: Gonzo the Great (voice of Frank Oz) says that he feels weird… because his pants are filled with starfish.
How to use it: When a friend tells you something embarrassing.

I don't know how I missed it, but yesterday was the 50th anniversary of Gumby. Gumby's one of those childhood figures that I appreciate more in theory than in fact; I remember the actual TV show as pretty boring. And despite my general disdain of both collectibles and the NBA, I would very much like to own the special Allan Iverson edition of Gumby. If you have one you don't need, call me.

What I didn't realize, until I started clicking around for Gumby trivia, is that Gumby's creator, Art Clokey, also created the Davey and Goliath series. Now, that's a show I feel real nostalgia for.

Cable television didn't come to Hampton Roads until the early 1980s, so for most of my childhood, we had only five TV stations: the big three networks, WHRO (public television), and CBN, the flagship of what became Pat Robertson's global media empire. (A Fox affiliate, Channel 33, came later.)

Of those, CBN had the most programming for kids. "Davey and Goliath" came on at random times all throughout the week, but always on Sunday mornings, sometime between the Reverend Ernest Angley and The 700 Club. We were fascinated with the Reverend Ernest -- his baby-blue polyester suits, his egregious hairpiece, the way he "cured" deaf people by making them repeat the word, "bay-bee," and most of all the way he transmitted his HEALing power RIGHT through the television screen, if you just put your hand right there and said, "Heal me, Jesus!" Sadly, the TV in our family room was up on a high shelf, and none of us could reach up there to feel that power for ourselves.

But I digress. (Although, in finding that link, I was thrilled to see that the Reverend Ernest is still in business, and plan to spend some time on that site later today.) I was always a little embarrassed to admit that I liked "Davey and Goliath," because they seemed so goody-goody, and were somehow suspect because their underlying religious outlook was obviously not Catholic.

But even now, anyone can crack me up by just saying, "I don't know, Daaay-vey," in Goliath's voice. I can't remember what Gumby sounded like at all.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

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