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Thursday, March 09, 2006

LIVING ISLAND RESIDENT, FRIEND OF H.R. PUFNSTUF DIES

Enough already with the actors dying. In the last few weeks we've sent Don Knotts, Darren McGavin, Dennis Weaver and Jack Wild on their way.

If you remember Wild, it's likely from either his portrayal of the Artful Dodger in the movie Oliver! (1968) or that of Jimmy, the boy stranded on Living Island in Sid and Marty Krofft's trippy 70s TV show H. R. Pufnstuf. Upon Wild's death, I was surprised to realize that I own soundtracks to both productions.

The Oliver! one, an LP, doesn't mean that much to me. I couldn't have been more than five years old when I saw it with my sisters and remember that there was too much going on for me to keep track of. For one third of the movie I couldn't stop thinking about how strange the word "gruel" is. Then I became very curious about Nancy and her tightly corseted torso for another third. The last third I spent basically terrified of Oliver Reed as Bill Sikes, a fear that was strongly reinforced years later when I saw him in Burnt Offerings.

The H.R. Pufnstuf soundtrack, however, is an item for which I do have affection. It's a extended play 7-inch 45 with ten songs in a colorful paper jacket with illustrations and photos from the show. As I recall, Kellogg's had a promotion offering the record to any industrious children out there who could send in enough Kellogg's cereal box tops. Obedient cereal consumers that we were, my sister Jackie and I settled into a routine of eating, clipping, storing and counting. Soon it was off to Battle Creek for our box tops. Six to eight weeks later, our record arrived. I'm told that it is quite collectible these days.

Click here to see the record.



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6 Comments:

At 3/10/2006 11:09 AM, Anonymous Jackie said...

HR Pufnstuf!
Where do you go when things get rough?
HR Pufnstuf!
You can't do a little cuz you can't do enough.

So what's the HR Pufnstuf record worth, and what's my cut?

 
At 3/10/2006 11:27 AM, Blogger Tom in L.A. said...

The current value is about $50. To receive your payment just send 100 box tops from Kellogg's Frosted Flakes and your first born to me.

 
At 3/13/2006 4:36 AM, Anonymous Jackie said...

First born is on his way. The box tops are going to take me a little while.

 
At 8/17/2008 4:50 PM, Blogger My Sanctuary said...

Heard about that. Bummer!!!

How did he die? I saw a recent pic, and his face looked distorted, somehow.

It's amazing how things connect. I was listening to the radio show Adventures in Odyssey when I heard Walker Edmiston died. I keyed in his name and found out HE was connected with the show, (voice of Dr. Blinky and another character).Anywho, that was how I ended up re-connecting with O'Reilly from General Hospital. (See also BILLIE HAYES// Witchiepoo) and now I'm writing a rather WACKY blog that joins Living Island with the heroes and villians from the Ice Princess storyline on General Hospital. And yes, SHE will be there. OH, I hope Tony Geary is a blogger. He'd love this!

Now I'm going in search of Witchiepoo video clips from youtube. Research. Oh, what fun!

If you know of anything about how Jack Wild died, please fill me in.

Thanks.

~Joanna~

 
At 10/19/2008 3:45 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I was privileged to meet Jack Wild in Nottingham, shortly before his death. I took along my ancient LP cover of the "Pufnstuf" soundtrack which he kindly signed for me.

At that time he was in remission for cancer of the throat, which flared soon after and led to his death.

I believe he married a local girl just before he passed away, and that he was a Christian.

Bless you Jack, you were a part of my past !

Barbara
Nottingham

 
At 10/19/2008 7:58 PM, Blogger My Sanctuary said...

Hi Barbara!

Thanks so much for that post!

That is a shame that Jack died, but I'm glad you got to meet him, and that he was a Christian. Good to hear!

I've actually bee keeping in touch with Billie Hayes (Witchiepoo) and she is anything BUT! I mailed her a copy of a story I wrote over the summer, that's on this site; "Kings of the Wrong Castle",(combining PnS with General Hospital's Ice Princess Storyline). and I feel a tad guilty now. I saw an interview with her, but I think it was done before Jack died. I'm not even sure she knew he was sick!

I read on a Sid and Marty Krofft site that they were thinking of re-doing PufnStuf but with JOHNNY DEPP as WITCHIEPOO! I DON'T THINK SO!!!! First of all, BILLIE should get first refusal. She 'created' that character! If she can't, then the ONLY other actress I would even consider for the role would be Andrea Martin (SCTV) She's a Canadian actress for the most part, but she's the only other actress who could do the character justice. Some of her character styles are SO close to Billie's it's wild! Leave it up to Hollywood to botch a classic!

Again, thanks for the post and the memories!

R.I.P. Jack!

~Joanna~

 

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