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Fonzie Eats a Can of Ravioli Over a Hot Plate. (Christmas Classic)

21 Dec

December 21, 2017christmas header

Christmas is a time of traditions. And nothing is more of a tradition here at Mr. Blog’s Tepid Ride than this Christmas episode of Happy Days. And for the Grinch among you, who think this is just an excuse for me to post a rerun, that’s simply not true. This marks the sixth time I’m posting this and it is all because, year in and year out, this is one of my most searched and most viewed posts during the holiday season.  

New meme for the 2017 season!

From December 24, 2010

I can’t let the holiday go by without everyone’s favorite 30 year-old teenager, the Fonz, making an appearance. You can have your Frosty and your Rudolph, this is my TV yuletide.

This is a classic piece of Christmastime must-see television around my house. (I’m sure that says a lot about my house. We also love Godzilla at Thanksgiving. It’s a bit hard to fit in the oven but trust me, it tastes delicious.)  In this clip from the early days of Happy Days, everyone is getting ready for Christmas, except poor Fonzie, who has nowhere to go. This was before Fonzie moved in above the Cunningham’s and he was going to spend a lonely holiday in his garage. Watch as The Fonz sits on a greasy toolbox, heats up a can of ravioli on a hot plate, and sets out a pathetic little holiday card for company. Were the Aloha Pussycats out-of-town? Where was Paula Petralunga? And what about the Hooper triplets, Pinky Tuscadero, or a dozen loose cheerleaders? Ponder that as you watch with someone you love.

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Happy Hanukkah, Jack Kirby and Ben Grimm!

13 Dec

Updated December 13, 2017

from December 23, 2016
and December 15, 2012

The 1976 Jack Kirby family Hanukkah card

The 1976 Jack Kirby family Hanukkah card

I am a big fan of The Fantastic Four and of them, I am first and foremost a fan of The Thing. He is easily in my top five, possibly top three comic book characters. And speaking of the First Family of Marvel Comics, Ben Grimm was created by two men who surely were members of the First Family of Marvel Comics, Stan Lee and Jack Kirby.

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And while many of the legends of the comic industry, like Superman creators Joe Siegel and Jerry Shuster, Will Eisner, Stan Lee and Jack “King” Kirby were Jewish, it doesn’t necessarily follow that their famous creations are Jewish. Superman is not Jewish, The Spirit is not Jewish (though many of Will Eisner’s contemporary creators contend that Eisner always implied that he was. So maybe…)

But Benjamin Jacob Grimm is undoubtedly Jewish.

And here's his bar mitzvah to prove it.

And here’s his bar mitzvah to prove it.

From wikipedia, oy vey!:

In keeping with an early taboo in the comic superhero world against revealing a character’s religion, the fact that Grimm was Jewish was not explicitly revealed until four decades after his creation, in the story, “Remembrance of Things Past” (in Fantastic Four, vol. 3, #56, August 2002). In this story, Grimm returns to his old neighborhood to find Mr. Sheckerberg, a pawn shop owner he had known as a child. Flashbacks during this story reveal Grimm’s Jewish heritage, and he even recites the Kaddish, the Jewish prayer often recited over the dead and dying, over the dying Sheckerberg, who eventually recovers. In a later story, Grimm even agrees to celebrate his Bar Mitzvah, since it has been 13 years (the age a Jewish boy celebrates his Bar Mitzvah) since he began his “second life” as the Thing. To celebrate the ceremony, Grimm organizes a poker tournament for every available superhero in the Marvel Universe.

It is a fact that The Thing is in many ways just Jack Kirby writing himself on the page. While The Spirit may be what Will Eisner wished to be, in many was The Thing is who Jack Kirby really was.

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Remind you of anyone?

 

Some personality traits of the cantankerously lovable, occasionally cigar-smoking, Jewish native of the Lower East Side are popularly recognized as having been inspired by those of co-creator Jack Kirby, who in interviews has said he intended Grimm to be an alter ego of himself.

So as we approach The Festival of Light, it is only appropriate to wish both Ben Grimm and Jack Kirby a very

hanukkah_happy

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This has been

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