Every little bit of Smiley
September 19, 2009
I spend a lot of time at the Autry Museum, especially in the summer (as should be apparent from my last half-dozen posts). It’s close to our home, the little one likes the place, it’s not the sort of museum where you have to be particularly quiet, the people are friendly, and it’s got, hands-down, the best air-conditioning in the L.A. area.
We often find ourselves in the Imagination Gallery, aka, the cowboy movie section. There’s a blue screen there and a saddle with a button under the horn. If a little finger pushes it, baby is part of a chase scene set to the William Tell overture. Briar rides this about 800 times every visit.
I’ve had plenty of time to peruse the exhibits and I’m happy to report that there is very little Smiley Burnette on display. Fellow Smiley-phobes, you are free to roam these halls with little fear of running into images of the big unfunny man in the battered black hat.
I count two (2) images of Smiley. The first is a brief appearance in the aforementioned tribute film to stunt men where he is barely recognizable, expect to the keen eye of those who have suffered through hours of his inane antics.
The second, and final, image is this, tucked in with a number of other stills running along the top of the displays.
It’s surprising really, seeing how long he was with Gene Autry. I mean, pretty much from the beginning, and, after a break as Starrett side-kick, right up until the end. He’s not even mentioned in the literature or the 20 minute film on Gene’s life.
But, look! Don’t get me wrong! I’m NOT complaining!