Sunday, March 3, 2013

Apeman: Issa's Sunday Service, #159

Ray Davies is a national treasure of Britain and a lyrical gift to the musically inclined worldwide.  Genius is a word one tries to be judicious bandying about but the number and quality of songs he has penned over the last few decades is truly astonishing

Ape Man by The Kinks on Grooveshark 
In case of wonky widget, click here

While listening to Apeman on my way to work, I was actually thinking how I'd love to share this one but there's no way this is going to have a literary a reference and - Pop! - "I'll be your Tarzan, you'll be my Jane" and if ever there was a wish fulfilled, there it was.

Which calls to mind an interesting scene from back in the pre-Hays Code Days, with a kind of quaint naviete about it. There is a real balletic beauty to the scene and, for the curious, with a stunt double being used for Maureen O'Hara in the underwater scenes:

Of course, the Burroughs estate was notoriously vigilant over its copyright (just ask Philip Jose Farmer) and, sadly for them but happily for us, some of the books have slipped into the public domain. Here, in a variety of formats, is the first Tarzan novel, Tarzan the Apes, from Project Gutenberg.

That's certainly one side of Davies' apeman - perhaps this is the other (my mind seems to be leaping about a bit):

In this scene, from the 1920, "Dr. Jekyll and and Mr. Hyde," John Barrymore does virtually the whole transformation without makeup (and, of course, without sound). His use of his hands, his hair, and eyes is quite remarkable to portray the Other apeman.

Finally, here are the Kinks, making like apemen:


Photo by Martin Fisch

one and all
faces of the Buddhas
cold tonight
translated by David G. Lanoue


Send a single haiku for the Wednesday Haiku feature. Here's how.

Go to the LitRock web site for a list of all 159 songs


Ed Baker said...

thanks ... WE NEEDED THIS .... and what it posits, especially for those
who perform/write/draw/create
"outside of The Box "

just last night while re-reading Harold Rosenberg's 1959, 1960 book:
The Tradition of the New this on pg 46
which (with my parenthetical additions
is aprappoe (or germain) to what you point towards:

"The various currents of Community Criticism converge in misleading the public into believing that an artist (poet, filmmaker) has a free choice as to what the content of his painting (poem, film) shall be and that his failure to concern himself with social ideals and problems is evidence of malice. Once this myth has been established, "Significant Content" can be introduced with the aid of Sanitation Committees and the thought police."

Ed Baker said...

and a couple of essays on the

O'Hara/Weissmuller Tarzan films..
and more :

Ed Baker said...

wrong Maureen ...
let's see if anyone is following this
and catches it.

both Maureens ... Beauties

Issa's Untidy Hut said...

Some great quotes from those Tarzan essays:

"Forget Robert Bly: Tarzan knew howto get in touch with his masculinity without attending a single seminar."

"And yet what really makes their coupling sizzle is the abundant tenderness between the two of them."

Fine Rosenberg quote, Ed. Thanks for passing it along.

Issa's Untidy Hut said...

Oh, sully van! (I missed it!)

Lyle Daggett said...

I grew up watching those Tarzan movies, the ones with Johnny Weismuller, also a couple (a little later maybe) with Lex Barker, and a couple of other actors here and there. Though for me, Weismuller will always be Tarzan. I would have been about seven years old when I first saw a bunch of them -- one of the local TV channels here in Minneapolis showed them on Saturday evenings for a while.

It wasn't till many years later that I first saw "Tarzan, the Ape Man," which I think may have been the first one Weismuller and O'Sullivan made together. Pretty much the standard Tarzan stuff, with a scene at the end showing (from behind) Tarzan and Jame and Cheetah the chimp standing hand in hand on a hilltop, looking off into what may have been a sunset, or anyway a bright vista, with a few bars of Tchaikowsky's "Romeo and Juliet" as background music.

I don't remember exactly when I saw the movie (maybe late 1970's or early 1980's), though sometime after that, Maureen O'Sullivan was on the David Letterman show one evening (around the time she'd been in Woody Allen's movie Hannah and Her Sisters), and she told a story about making the movie "Tarzan, the Ape Man."

She said that the chimpanzee that served as Cheetah apparently was at times overly attracted to Johnny Weismuller, and sometimes became very demonstrative while they were filming. So in many of the scenes with Cheetah, the chimpanzee had to be restrained with a chain leash around the lower leg. O'Sullivan said (I haven't evern checked this out myself) that in the final scene in the movie, as they're standing looking into the distance, you can see the leash, a little bit, if you look closely.

Gillena Cox said...

Enjoyed, and i will be adding the links you email me, to my Sunday Savvy from next issue

much love

ACravan said...

Very nice. I hope you don't mind, but I will post this as a link to the Kinks Yahoo chat group. The people there will want to see this and will appreciate it. Curtis Roberts