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RE : Amos N Andy

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  • Vincente Tobias
    Wow! I never expected my rather innocuous remarks to bring up such a discussion. However, the comments that have been forthcoming are interesting and
    Message 1 of 34 , Oct 5, 2011
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      Wow! I never expected my rather innocuous remarks to bring up such a discussion.  However, the comments that have been forthcoming are interesting and valuable. 
      The entertainment vehicles of yesteryear are probably no different than literature of an earlier period. Who would write or publish such a book as "Tom Sawyer" today, yet we recognize it for its literary merit.  The Stu Erwin tv show of the early 50's had a rather stereotypical black man (Willie, I believe he was called)  and though I have not seen an episode of that show since about 1952, I still remember Willie.  The Beulah show on tv was similar. I remember those characters better than some of the white people on other sitcoms. And who can ever forget Rochester?  The black actors on TV's A&A are also imprinted at least in my mind as outstanding character actors. So, whatever the current social standards we may have, we still have to acknowledge the lasting artistry of those actors. Of course, the objection that white people played the black characters on the radio may be valid, but as radio was the theatre of the mind I think we have to look past that. After all, Beulah on the radio was played by a white MAN!  When the tv series "Queer as Folk" came out there were objections from some people in the gay community that many of the actors were actually heterosexual, but were playing the roles of homosexuals.  Well, my goodness! Boris Karloff was not a monster, but he certainly did a good job as the monster in the Frankenstein movies, as did Bela Lugosi in the Dracula movies.  Luigi in "Life with Luigi" (a show I could never really appreciate, but not for its characterization of an Italian immigrant, rather just because I didn't find it funny --but I've only heard it as OTR) was played by J.Carroll Naish who was actually of Irish background.  And Marie Wilson as Irma Peterson played the played the part of the dumb blonde to perfection. Was she even a blonde in real life? Certainly she was not dumb! (As Dolly Parton  said when accused of being a dumb blonde: "I'm not dumb and I'm not blonde!") (As an aside: Did you know that Stan Lee, the creator and illustrate of Spider Man, also did the writing for the My Friend Irma comic books?)
      Anyway, politically correct or not, these parodies of segments of our population should --in my opinion-- be taken at face value and if they have artistic merit, they should be appreciated as they are. After all, who is Homer Simpson parodying?  About half the population!
      Vince




        



    • Joe Mackey
      Vince wrote -- ... Never lived in Chicago, but I have visited the town. ... No. Now I have to listen on my own time. :( I am now the supervisor of the
      Message 34 of 34 , Oct 7, 2011
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        Vince wrote --

        > You live in WV, Joe? For some reason I thought you lived in Chicago!

        Never lived in Chicago, but I have visited the town.

        > Do you still have that night watchman job where you can listen to hours of OTR?

        No. Now I have to listen on my own time. :(
        I am now the supervisor of the parking enforcement office at Marshall
        University, a lieutenant in my security company and work days.
        Joe
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