Here are 10 things you should know about Gloria Swanson, born 121 years ago today. The oft-wed Swanson was one of the biggest stars of the silent era.
Time for another Day-Brightening Distraction: The What’s My Line? channel on Youtube features every episode of the 17-year network run of this delightful show known to be extant. You can start at the beginning and watch all the way to the end.
All your favorites are there: Arlene Francis, Bennett Cerf, Dorothy Kilgallen, Steve Allen, Fred Allen and a rotating cast of familiar (or, perhaps, not so familiar) faces trying ascertain what average folks (and one mystery celebrity guest per show) do for a living. John Charles Daly is the able host of the festivities, and one is treated to a lineup of elegantly dressed personalities who are urbane, witty and sophisticated but also down to earth and accessible.
There’s a reason this panel game show, so seemingly simple on its surface, garnered loyal viewers for 17 years, and from our vantage point, more than 50 years down the road, it’s a magic carpet ride back to an era that is, of course, bygone, but still within reach. If you’re of a certain age, streaming these shows will feel like reuniting with old friends; if you’re a younger viewer with even the tiniest interest in life as it was once lived, then this will be right up your alley.
Watch an episode or two per day of WML?, and we can almost guarantee that you’ll find the difficult times we’re living in just a little bit easier to deal with. No miracle cures here, just a few laughs, a little nostalgia, and some fun, intelligent celebrities of days gone by.
We’ve linked to a playlist of the first two seasons–137 episodes in all, starting with show’s debut episode, which first aired on February 2, 1950. If it strikes you as a little rough and a bit ragged, don’t worry, it quickly gets better. These were the very early days of television, after all, and it shows. But keep watching and before long, you’ll feel quite at home. All 17 seasons are there for you to enjoy. Watch now; thank us later.
Here are 10 things to know about character actor Edward Everett Horton, born 134 years ago today. His presence in the cast is enough to convince us to watch just about any picture.
Because we are all being told to remain “socially distant” and many of us are holing up at home out of concern over this confounded virus, with Broadway theatres going dark (and theatres elsewhere, too, we assume) and sports of every stripe being postponed, if not outright canceled, we’re all looking for edifying, comforting and safe ways to fill our time.
As many of you know, one of the perqs we offer to our Patreon supporters is a monthly Turner Classic Movies Tip Sheet, in which we recommend (at least) one movie every day from TCM’s lineup. Usually this is made available to patrons at the $5 level and up, but starting today and for the foreseeable future, we are going to make this tip sheet public—available to everyone, patron or not—as we can all use ways to distract ourselves these days.
One of these days, when things have returned to something like normal, our TCM Tip Sheet will go back behind the Patreon firewall, but for now, beginning with the March 2020 edition, it’s available for all to view.
(Our apologies to those outside the USA—we know this announcement doesn’t do much for you, but we wish you good health and entertaining distractions.)
Here are 10 things you should know about Googie Withers, born 103 years ago today. She enjoyed a career in movies, TV and theatre that spanned more than 65 years.