Saturday, July 14, 2012

Apropos of Nothing

I caught the opening credits of the 1978 Superman yesterday and was transported back in time.  I haven't seen that movie in at least two decades, but prior to that I probably saw it upwards of 20 times.

We must have rented the VHS tape from Campus Video a lot.  Plus, it was often played as a Sunday Night Movie back in the day when we would get "Network Television Premiere!"s of classics like Star Wars, Rocky, and Smokey and the Bandit.

Yes, I didn't have cable growing up, but there has also been a point in MY lifetime where cable didn't exist.  Just four channels.  On a clear day (or when we could get dad to go up and hold the antennae) we could get six!

Sidebar:  I'm sure my brothers recall fondly the antennae relay game the same as I do.  One person if front of the television.  One person on the second floor landing.  One person in the attic turning the antennae after a big storm went through. Repeating each phrase like a bucket brigade.


Only advantage of having just four channels, this game didn't take quite as long as it could have.

Back to my original random thought.

First of all.  I absolutely do NOT remember this movie opening on the black and white comic book with the little kid reading about the Daily Planet.  Did they add this in recently?

Second of all.  I kind of miss the massive overture theme song while the opening credits roll.  Nothing wrong with a little delayed gratification.  Why wouldn't I want to watch some stellar graphics shoot through outer space, letting me know who I'm going to see in this saga?  Plus, it's extremely helpful to have the screen writer's name in neon script with no other distractions.

And lastly.  This movie is apparently starring MARLON BRANDO and Gene Hackman. 

I get that Christopher Reeves was unknown, but he was the title role and his name came AFTER the title.  Huh?

Now, I'm sure pre-tub-of-lard Brando negotiated top billing for his minuscule screen time.  This equates to Alan Rickman asking to put his name before Danielle Radcliffe's in Harry Potter.  Unheard of.  What a jackass!  And just goes to show that chivalry was dying even back then.

I remember a story from when Gregory Peck (For you kiddos, that's the guy that played Atticus Finch in the To Kill a Mockingbird movie you were forced to watch in English class.) filmed Roman Holiday in 1953, a lovely little romantic comedy. 

He was a big name by then.  A "Movie Star" before there was such a thing as just a "celebrity". 

When they were done filming, he insisted that the unknown ingenue that played opposite him absolutely had to get top billing with him, which the studio had never intended.  But the studio listened.  Their names were side by side, prior to the title.  I'm sure Audrey Hepburn appreciated it.  (Yes, little ones, she became very famous, too.)

I want more Gregory Peck!

Apropos of nothing = Without reference to anything. Without any apparent reason or purpose.


  1. I am laughing my ass off at your sidebar.

    1. I swear I remember our moms taking us to see Superman 2. I don't remember you particularly being there, but your mom and Rachel definitely. Am I making that up in my head. I would have only been 6.

  2. Wow, somewhere between Superman, VHS tapes, and adjusting the rabbit ears with tin foil on the TV as a kid I just sat here and had a full-on nostalgia moment.

    Must add Superman to my Netflix queue. I'll let you know what's on the disc at the start (Disclaimer: I have about 150 movies in my Q & only watch one every 60-90 days so it could be 5 years before I get around to letting you know).

    1. Your queue sounds a lot like my queue, or what I call "where movies go to die".

  3. Do you generally optimize your blog posts for search algorithms?