Saturday, February 8, 2014
8 February 2014 - UPDATED with Gertie the Dinosaur
Dawn Olivieri b. 1981 (The Vampire Diaries, True Blood, Heroes, Stargate:Atlantis)
Jim Parrack b. 1981 (True Blood, Battle Los Angeles, Supernatural)
Seth Green b. 1974 (Buffy, The Venture Brothers, Scooby-Doo 2: Monsters Unleashed, Greg the Bunny, Angel, Seaquest 2032, The X-Files, My Stepmother Is an Alien)
Mary McCormack b. 1969 (K-PAX, Deep Impact)
Larry Clarke b. 1964 (Transformers: Dark of the Moon, Lost, Buffy)
Ethan Phillips b. 1955 (True Blood, The Island, Star Trek: Enterprise, Star Trek: Voyager, Star Trek: First Contact, Star Trek: The Next Generation, Werewolf[TV], The Twilight Zone , Critters)
Mary Steenburgen b. 1953 (Elf, Gulliver’s Travels, Back to the Future Part III, Time After Time)
Brooke Adams b. 1949 (The Dead Zone, Invasion of the Body Snatchers)
Roger Lloyd Pack b. 1944 died 15 January 2014 (Doctor Who, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, Interview with the Vampire, U.F.O., The Magus)
Nick Nolte b. 1941 (The Spiderwick Chronicles, Hulk, Breakfast of Champions)
John Williams b. 1932 (composer, Star Wars, Minority Report, Harry Potter, A.I. Artificial Intelligence, Jurassic Park, Indiana Jones, E.T., Dracula , Superman, Close Encounters of the Third Kind, Land of the Giants, The Time Tunnel, Lost in Space)
Jack Larson b. 1928 (Superman Returns, Lois & Clark, Superboy, Advnetures of Superman)
Lyle Talbot b. 1902 died 2 March 1996 (Plan 9 From Outer Space, Commando Cody: Sky Marshal of the Universe, Tobor the Great)
Jules Verne b. 1828 died 24 March 1905 (author, From the Earth to the Moon, Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea, Journey to the Center of the Earth, In the Year 2889)
A long birthday list today and many good candidates for the Picture Slot. For iconic roles, Jack Larson as Jimmy Olsen and Ethan Phillips as Neelix would certainly qualify, but I'd say the two most influential talents on this list are those who aren't on camera, composer John Williams and author Jules Verne, whose picture you are looking at. I had forgotten that Williams did so much work for Irwin Allen early in his career, writing the themes for all of Allen's sci-fi shows except Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea. His later work, much of it with Steven Spielberg, speaks for itself.
Regular readers will know that I have often used H.G. Wells for predictions but I've never used Verne. The reason is simple. Many of his stories with dates assume that the fantastic events have already happened and his great leap into the future was to 2889, which is way too far into the future to be useful by the standards set for this blog.
Many happy returns to all the living on our list and to the dead, thanks for all the memories.
Gertie the Dinosaur by Winsor McCay released 1914
The first cartoon using keyframe animation is now one hundred years old. This was a huge step forward in the technology and even without that, it's Winsor McCay, one of the great cartoonists of all time, whether moving or still. The link above gives a lot of live action lead-in to the main show, but I found it entrancing and I hope you will as well.
Predictor: Senator William A. Peffer or Kansas, giving his predictions for the 20th Century in honor of the 1893 Columbian Exposition held in Chicago.
Predictions: Men will grow wiser, better and purer in the years to come. The common weal will be the chief end of government, the ballot of the poor shall be counted and the popular will be law. Women will share with men in all the duties of citizenship, the dramshop (a.k.a. saloons) extinct and war abolished. Men will navigate the air and smoke shall be suppressed. The time of daily toils shall be shortened to four or five hours.
Reality: Well, Senator Peffer wasn't asking for much, was he? I cut several of his predictions short, but he went through the entire shopping list of populism that was found back in his day. It's no coincidence that women's suffrage, prohibition of alcohol and anti-war sentiments should all end up in the same sentence. As a historian friend of mine puts it, prohibition of alcohol was the attempt of the women's rights movement to outlaw bad husbands.
Looking one day ahead... INTO THE FUTURE!
A prediction about October 2015 from this week's Wall Street Journal.
Join us then... IN THE FUTURE!