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Today is the birthday of the incomparable Jack Cassidy (1927-1976). Growing up in the 1970s, he was one of my favorite character actors. The idea of himself that he seems to have held (and that has been perpetuated by others), i.e. that he was living in the shadow of his wife Shirley Jones, has always been a bit perplexing to me as someone who saw him on television constantly, where he was always cheerful, witty, carefree,  and in possession of a larger-than-life, clearly defined public image. Cassidy was both ahead of, and behind his times. He adored John Barrymore (even played him in W.C. Fields and Me), though he unfortunately seemed to model his persona on late Barrymore: one part former thespian, one part drunken buffoon. Clearly talented, not just as a musical comedy star but as a dramatic actor (he won both a Tony and an Emmy)…

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March 3 is the anniversary of the release date of the hilarious W.C. Fields short The Fatal Glass of Beer (1933).

Classic comedy buffs cherish this film to a degree that you can scarcely imagine. Fields only made about a half dozen comedy shorts during his film career; most of his movies are features. Most of the shorts (like this one) were made for Mack Sennett and count among the Keystone founder’s very last films. Fields’ shorts were based on sketches he had originally presented in Broadway revues. Many of them slipped into the public domain in the 1960s and thus have gotten a good bit of play, originally on tv and then on home video. This little movie was one of my earliest exposures to the comedy of Fields, and was one of the first videeotapes I ever owned — I’ve probably seen it 50 times.

Further The Fatal Glass…

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We enjoyed the pilot of Amazon’s The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel a great deal — in fact, enough to write our own review. But we knew someone who could write a better one: multi-talented actress, comedienne, screenwriter/playwright, podcast host, comedy scholar and Gracie Allen expert Lauren Milberger.  Her Gracie Allen guest post here five years ago is in our all-time top 25! I just knew she’d have great things to say about the new show, and she did. I turn you now over to her:

The Marvelous Mrs Maisel: A Woman in Redux

Many people would consider the modern Golden Age of Comedy to be the 1950s and 60s, when what we know today as stand-up became all the rage and television was in its infancy. When the comedy from vaudeville finally had its eyes back again (after years of being in the dark with radio) and was able to…

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Huzzahs resounded here at Travlanche when we heard the news that The Marvelous Mrs. Maiselhad been picked up for a full season by Amazon a few months ago. For Women’s History Month we asked guest correspondent Lauren Milberger, who wrote here so enthusiastically about the pilot, to give us her take on the full series. She had much to say! This is the first installment. There will be more to come anon. And keep an eye (ear) peeled for Milberger’s new Murphy Brown podcast. It’s available here.  Now’s here’s Lauren —

She’s Marvelous… And More

Many of you may have watched last month’s Golden Globe Awards and cheered with delight as the Amazon Prime series The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel won not just one, but two—yes TWO—statues (or statuettes): Best Actress (Rachel Brosnahan) and Best Comedy Series. While some may have seen that and wondered…

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transmissionglasgow @glasgowmixtape

The search for the real identity of Banksy is a story one that never fails capture the imagination of the media and the millions of fans across the globe of the subversive Bristol street artist, ever since he came to the public’s attention back in 1997 with his The Mild Mild West mural.
And with the news that filtered out in March of a scientific study by Queen Margaret University confirming previous studies that pointed out to him as being plain old public school boy Robin Gunningham, the final nail in the coffin was struck in what had left the world scratching their heads.
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But what if Banksy isn’t the one person everyone thinks he is. What if – akin to the Shakespeare consiparcy theories, Banksy is a group of people who have stencilling different locations both at home and abroad. Such a rich body of work done over a…

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Warning:Curves Ahead

This morning, as I was perusing my Facebook timeline, I happened upon an article that a lovely friend shared. It was entitled “24 Things Women Should Stop Wearing After Age 30”, and it triggered Maximum Eye-Rolling from everyone who took the time out to read it.

Written by Kallie Provencher for RantChic.com, this “article” (I use the term loosely) highlighted things such as “leopard print”, “graphic tees”, and “short dresses” (because “By this age, women should know it’s always better to leave something to the imagination”). Kallie, it seems, has a number of opinions on what women over 30 should and shouldn’t be doing, having also penned “30 Things Women Over 30 Shouldn’t Own” and “20 Pictures Women Over 30 Need To Stop Posting Online”. (What is this magical post-30 land where women are suddenly not allowed to do or own so many things?!)

Motivated by Kallie’s “article”, I decided to…

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