Sunday, February 26, 2006
Damn, that makes me feel old.
If McGavin's death makes you wistful, you can always immerse yourself in the original television series (which, unfortunately, you are unlikely to find in most video rental stores).
CWCID: Tim Blair.
The box marked "frah-gee-lee" (heh)
I loved Darren McGavin. And was glad to see the attempted resurrection of "Night Stalker" last fall failed. McGavin brought a breathless excitement to it, an eccentricity, and a sense of fun.
Salud. You were a favorite.
I've read many obits and articles since learning of McGavin's passage, and none mentioned what to my mind is some of his finest work: his recordings of the books-on-tape versions of the John D. MacDonald "Travis McGee" books. They are simply splendid. The man was a true professional.
His work as Mr. "The Old Man" Parker in 1983's holiday classic "A Christmas Story" is simply hilarious. It is a broadly drawn comic characterization that is at the same time as true-to-life as can be imagined. A gifted actor never ceases to entertain you with a role no matter how many times you see it, and Mr. McGavin had that gift. RIP.
I just discovered the Mike Hammer series where he played the lead role -- what a character! Tough-talking but funny and always appreciative of any woman he saw, with a smile:) They were made in the 1950s and are black and white, but with Darren's acting it is as if he just filmed them yesterday. A treasure of a series!