Debating the legacy of Lon Chaney Jr.

Over the past year, I’ve heard two of my favorite podcasters, Karina Longworth and Gilbert Gottfried, mention Lon Chaney Jr. several times each, and do so in wildly different ways. [Gottfried, I think it’s safe to say, likes Chaney, best known for portraying Larry Talbot in the 1941 film The Wolf Man, very much. Longworth, to put it kindly, does not.] And, as I sat here the other day, pondering the wildly different views of these two individuals, both of whom I greatly admire, it occurred to me that what I’d really love to see is a crossover episode, where both Longworth and Gottfried are given an opportunity to watch Lon Chaney Jr. clips and argue their cases, perhaps in front of a jury. [I’m still trying to work out the format in my head, but, having just watched Witness for the Prosecution, I keep coming back to the idea of a jury verdict, and how awesome it would be to have a definitive declaration as to whether Chaney was worth a damn or not.] As I have no idea how such things are accomplished, I made my suggestion on Twitter, which you can see below. But, as a few days have now passed, and I still haven’t see a “Lonapalooza” headline in Variety, I thought that I’d note it here as well. So, if you’re an entertainment industry insider with the wherewithal to make something like this happen, I’d appreciate it if you’d make a call or two, OK?

I know that, in the whole scheme of things, a debate over the legacy of Lon Chaney Jr. probably doesn’t warrant a great deal of time and energy, but, who knows, maybe it’s exactly what an exhausted and overwhelmed America needs right now. Maybe it’s what we’ve all been waiting for. Maybe, once it happens, people will take to the streets saying, “If our nation’s two most thoughtful historians of old Hollywood can find the time to debate the acting choices of Lon Cheney Jr., then I sure as hell can manage a voter registration drive in my small town.” Yes, I know that’s probably a bit of a reach, but I need to somehow justify, if only to myself, the fact that I intend to watch Spider Baby tonight, instead of posting about the corruption of Trump EPA Director Scott Pruitt.

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  1. anonymous
    Posted April 9, 2018 at 7:57 am | Permalink

    Do podcasts, like sitcoms, have crossover episodes? Are there examples of such things happening?

  2. Kurt
    Posted April 9, 2018 at 8:54 am | Permalink

    He was great in Abbott and Costello meet Frankenstein.

  3. Steven Olson
    Posted April 9, 2018 at 10:07 am | Permalink

    Moderated by a marionette that morphs into a wolf, maybe?

  4. Posted May 18, 2018 at 6:00 pm | Permalink

    Today, I secured my place in the Awesome Colossal Podcast pantheon.

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