Episode #1526

Broadcasting Live from 1914

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Friday, June 27, 2014

(Left to right) A newspaper ad for Winsor McCay's film Gertie the Dinosaur, Charlie Chaplin as the Tramp, cover for a 1914 edition of Edgar Rice Burroughs Tarzan of the Apes (Left to right) An ad for Winsor McCay's film Gertie the Dinosaur, Charlie Chaplin as the Tramp, cover for a 1914 edition of Edgar Rice Burroughs Tarzan of the Apes (Variety/British Film Institute/McClelland, Goodchild, and Stewart/Wikipedia Commons [Public Domain])

This week, Studio 360 is broadcasting from 1914, covering the cultural happenings of a remarkable year. Charlie Chaplin debuted the Tramp, the character who defines the silent film era, in that year; one of America’s great newspaper cartoonists invented the first animated character, Gertie the dinosaur; and George Bernard Shaw opened a front in the war between the sexes with Pygmalion. Tarzan debuted in 1914, and Jack Handey reimagines him trading the trees for the urban jungle. Plus, the assassination in Sarajevo that sparked the Great War is recalled by writer Aleksandar Hemon, whose forebear was in the crowd that fateful day.

Gertie, the Dinosaur Who Gave Birth to a Mouse

Years before Mickey Mouse, Gertie the dinosaur amazed audiences who had never seen a drawing that moved. Her creator, Winsor McCay, thought cartoons would become a great art form — and was disappointed when they went commercial.

Video: "Gertie the Dinosaur" 

Comments [1]

American Icons: The Tramp

With just a pair of baggy pants, a derby hat, mustache, floppy shoes, and his own physical genius, Charlie Chaplin created silent film's most memorable character — the Tramp.

Video: Charlie Chaplin in Kid Auto Races at Venice

Comments [4]

1914 Blues Challenge: Marc Anthony Thompson Picks a Winner(s)

For our latest listener challenge, we asked you to record your versions of one of 1914’s hit songs, “Yellow Dog Blues” by W.C. Handy — and you came through. Now our guest judge Marc Anthony Thompson (a.k.a. Chocolate Genius) reveals two winners.

Listen to the top entries

Comments [1]

How a Happy Ending Ruined Pygmalion

We mostly think of George Bernard Shaw’s play Pygmalion as the basis for the musical My Fair Lady. But Shaw was trying to write a feminist tract, not a rom-com.

Comments [2]

Tarzan in the Village, by Jack Handey

When Tarzan follows Jane to New York City, things get a little bit … hairy.

Comments [2]

Aleksandar Hemon: The Accordion

Novelist Aleksandar Hemon, a native of Sarajevo, reimagines the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand through the lens of family history: one of his relatives was watching the motorcade, standing on the sidelines holding his new accordion.

Comment

Comments [3]

Bill Wagner from NYC

While the broadcast as a whole was well done the piece on Tarzan of the Apes was terrible. With the potential to tie Tarzan of the Apes and its author Edgar Rice Burroughs into the rest of the decade and beyond your show instead made a mockery of the iconic character. The narrator's use of the stiff somewhat monosyllabic tone would seem to indicate that the books were never read and that the movie view of the character was used. Remember that Burroughs was, in the words of Ray Bradbury, the most influential writer of the twentieth century.

Jul. 01 2014 11:12 AM
Dina Hofstetter from New Rochelle, NY

So much fun! Brilliant olde timey voice, Kurt.

Jul. 01 2014 10:40 AM
Kerr Lockhart from Teaneck, NJ

Thanks for one of the best shows in ages. Every story was a winner. Bravo!

Jun. 27 2014 10:11 AM

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