Tuesday, February 28, 2006

Rule of Threes

It appears that the celebrity "rule of threes" holds true; I was so convinced that it wouldn't work that I viewed my earlier post as a sort of paper tiger. However, as my good friends Charles and Lanny remarked in their replies to that post, Dennis Weaver died yesterday, making the third significant celebrity to die in so many days.

Lots of people remember Weaver for his role as Chester on Gunsmoke, but I never particularly cared for Gunsmoke, so I barely remember him in that role--in fact, I remember those who did exaggerated imitations of Chester much better than I remember the character. It wasn't until McCloud came along in the early 1970's that I became a fan of Weaver's work; his portrayal of McCloud laid the groundwork for such famous contemporary "Southwestern lawman" writers as Tony Hillerman, I always thought. The show was different from the average cop/detective show of the era, and it worked because Weaver was so believable in the role. He played the everyman character remarkably well--and that's what made his role in Duel so memorable. (I watched that film several times and enjoyed it well enough, but my nephew Cole could never get too much of that film; my parents had it on videotape and Cole would watch it again and again and again when he was a child, 'til he knew ever scene.)

With the passing of each of these celebrities, another chapter of my childhood is closed. Makes me glad that so much of the work of Knotts, McGavin, and Weaver are still available on video...

2 comments:

Kat said...

Thanks for posting, I was trying to remember the third name. Anyway, what I found even weirder is that all 3 first names start with D. And they're within 2 years of the same age & died within 2 days of each other. Life is strange.

cliff said...

... and alas, death is stranger!...