Thursday, May 01, 2014

Victor Mature's Dog

In case you were wondering (you weren't), Victor Mature's dog shows up in that book just four pages later. He or she is named "Genius," not "Genius II," so maybe Victor Mature was pulling the reporter's leg. Jim Backus's acting teacher is said to have "owl-like eyes," so you know what that means. And you might be surprised by the variety of people - an old woman, an old man on a train, a scheming cocktail waitress, and many others - who long to, and occasionally do, have romantic interludes with Jim Backus, according to Jim Backus. But his appendix bursts before anything happens with the old woman, who is probably not even old except in the eyes of a callow Jim Backus. And now let us change the subject. Backus devotes a chapter to his "surrogate father" Ed Wynn (pictured), and that got me thinking about Ed Wynn's odd place in the culture. He's forgotten, I guess. Even Jim Backus feels the need to constantly remind the reader who he is, but Ed Wynn's voice is still around - that's the weird part. It's pretty much the voice of the character Choose Goose (also pictured) on ADVENTURE TIME, for example.
What a strange thing to die in 1966 and just have your voice floating around from person to person on its own ever since. Ed Wynn was married countless times - I mean, Jim Backus literally can't count how many times - and was always seen with a "long-stemmed beauty" on each arm. (That's what Jim Backus calls women!) Well, that surprised me. But what doesn't.