Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Happy Birthday!

Today would have been the 80th birthday of Richard Dawson. Apparently, he is best known for hosting the original Family Feud show. However, I know him as Corporal Peter Newkirk, who just might very well be my favourite character from Hogan's Heroes. I have no idea what Newkirk did for a living before joining the RAF and landing himself in a prison camp, but I suspect it was rather shady, whatever it was. Newkirk is the go-to guy for safe-cracking, pick-pocketing, conning and forging. He does card tricks, and when the situation demands it, the occasional imitation

Hogan's Heroes is one of my very favourite TV shows. Yes, it is very corny, it has canned laughter, it is wildly implausible. For all that, it had a great cast of characters, all very distinct, who played well off each other. It is genuinely funny, and the comedic timing is brilliant. There is a surprising amount of genuine history in it, and while the main conceit of the show - that POWs were actively working against the Germans - is played for laughs, there is a real-life basis for it. (The Great Escape, anyone?)And it occasionally sobers up enough to remind us that there is a war going on, and that there really are very high stakes invovled here. Furthermore, though it ran for six seasons, and there are a few weak episodes here and there, it is one of the few TV shows that never jumped the shark. It is, in my humble opinion, unjustly underrated.

For your entertainment I present the following clip, in which the boys trick the prison commandant into thinking that the Germans are losing the war: (That's Newkirk there, the fellow pretending to be Hitler.)


Treskie said...

I LOVE Newkirk! I like his Hat Trick too though.... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=44YSBK8VRN8

Amy said...

Marhi, this post made my day. :D Hogan's Hero's is definitely the best show ever.
Newkirk is so awesome! It's silly, but the boys in this show make me feel like I can face anything. *Grin*

Anonymous said...


"... and keep smiling" Grin. Newkirk is brilliant. I love how he calls Carder "Andrew" and his Hitler impersonation was fantastic:) Hogans Heroes is so fun. It is lighthearted but 'puzzling' enough to keep your interst. and Loui is one of the few French men I like. He's amazing. "The Boys..." *Grin* I love their idea's and contraptions... Hogans heroes is AWESOME.

How is NaNo going? *evil laugh*
God Bless