Two big screen adieus and a small screen hello, as TVTA learns that movie director George A. Romero has died aged 77. Romero is famous for bringing zombies to cinema. His celebrated budget zombie films like Night of the Living Dead and Dawn of the Dead are classics of their genre. I like Romero’s films for their simplicity, comedy, humanity and social commentary. RIP George A. Romero.
Martin Landau – one of my childhood heroes in his lead role as Commander Koenig in Gerry and Sylvia Anderson’s Space 1999 TV series, has died aged 89. Landau received due recognition with a best supprting actor Oscar for his role as horror legend Bela Lugosi in the 1994 Tim Burton film Ed Wood. RIP Martin Landau.
And welcome to British actress Jodie Whittaker who has just received the key to the Tardis in her new role as the 13th Doctor in Doctor Who. Whittaker shined in the acclaimed BBC series Broadchurch. I can’t wait to see what she will offer as the latest incarnation of the Doctor. Welcome Jodie Whittaker.
I just heard that Adam West, the actor who played Batman in the 1960s TV series and 1966 feature film, has died aged 88. My initial thought was shit, no! Then for some reason a big smile came to my face. And I think the reason for that is because Adam West’s Batman was my Batman as a kid, and not only managed to help embroider my childhood with adventures, crazy storylines, cool characters and vehicles, and the best secret lair ever… but also made me happy.
Batman was one of the shows I looked forward to watching the most, and whenever the feature film was aired on TV I made sure I’d watch it – the scene of the shark and the Batcopter being my favourite! Looking back I can see how the show was played for a decent amount of campy laughs – a lot of which would’ve escaped the attention of my kid-self. I’m a fan of what Burton and Nolan did with the character and I enjoy some of the comic books, but in many ways my sense of who, or what, Batman is will always be shaped by Adam West’s Caped Crusader.
Farewell old chum.
Photo of Adam West as Batman from the television series. Public Domain.
So sad to hear that Carrie just passed away. I know she did plenty of other great work but she’ll always remain in my heart for her role as Princess Leia. Whenever I saw her interviewed on TV she was always funny and seemed a likeable person. My thoughts go out to her family and loved ones.
Sad to hear the news that Kenny Baker has died today. R2-D2 has always been one of my favourite characters from Star Wars, and Kenny played his part well inside this droid for six of the films, including the role of Speeder Bike thief, Paploo the Ewok in Return of the Jedi. Here are a few vintage toy ads featuring the feisty droid.
France. Pif Gadget. 1982.
France. Pif Gadget. 1979.
France. PIf Gadget. 1981.
One of the greatest characters to wear the gloves. Ali had
courage, conviction and charisma that was displayed in abundance both inside and outside of the ring. This 1974 US comic ad imagines Ali pitched against another veritable hero – Superman!
US. DC Unexpected. 1978.