Friday, 21 May 2010

Burr

Born on this day in 1917 was the TV and film actor Raymond Burr, best remembered as Perry Mason. Burr lived in more innocent times, when an actor could falsify not only his sexual orientation but great chunks of his life story - a couple of marriages that never happened, a non-existent son, his war service. It all came out after his death - see Early Career and Personal life here. Still, Burr seems to have been a thoroughly nice chap (if a little fantasy prone), who was happiest tending his orchids (no pun intended) and who gave away generous chunks of his earnings to charities and individuals. After Perry Mason, of course, he found TV fame again as the wheelchair-bound detective Ironside, a role he left in 1975 because he couldn't stand being pushed around any more. Boom boom.

14 comments:

  1. As if cultivating orchids and collecting seashells weren't a dead giveaway!

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  2. Indeed - like Rock Hudson's petit point embroidery.

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  3. I'll be honest: I never saw the Rock Hudson thing coming. My bet was always on Tony Curtis but I guess I called that one wrong.

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  4. Let's face it, being an actor is a bit of a giveaway.

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  5. Many were genuinely shocked about Freddy Mercury. The day before yesterday was an innocent age.

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  6. Burrs mysterious occupant in Rear Window was a classic and Perry Mason the essence of nineteen fifties television. As for Rock Hudson, an entire generation of burdz of a certain age were mortified. As Frau Malty said at the time 'boy, was Jane Wyman wasting her time'

    The cuckoo arrived yesterday afternoon Nige, unfortunately the hillside near his patch was ablaze, 'cuckoo cough cough cuckoo' was the call. I hope he stays.

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  7. Lawyers hated Perry Mason. He made it very difficult to tell a client his case was hopeless for lack of evidence. The client just assumed that, if his lawyer was any good at all, he would arange for Paul Drake to rush into the courtroom with the missing piece at the last minute, thus sealing a dramtic triumph for Truth and Justice.

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  8. One of my favorite parts of the oppressive Sonia Sotomayor hearings was the moment when Al Franken, a man with an excellent education and a self-deprecating humor, asked the nominee about Perry Mason. It's interesting how sometimes humor undercuts a pompous and vacuous volley of attacks.

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