Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Attaboy, Clark!

"The Ghost and Mr. Chicken" was on tv last night. I hadn't seen this thing in 20, maybe 30 years so I stopped and watched it. Don Knotts! You want to talk about an underrated actor...you can say "The Andy Griffith Show" was corny if you want to (I would disagree) but if you honestly think Deputy Barney Fife is not one of the 10 funniest characters in televsion history, I'm sorry, but you're just a moron.

Knotts is hilarious in this movie as Luther Higgs, a Barney Fife who wants to be a newspaper reporter who gets involved in shenanigans at a "haunted" mansion. But one of the funniest things in the movie, and I had forgotten this, is the running gag where some unseen person in crowd scenes is constantly yelling "Attaboy, Luther!"

This apparently actually became a popular catchphrase for a while. The modern equivalent would probably be Rob Schneider yelling "You can do it!" in Adam Sandler movies. I think it's time to bring back the original classic. Think about it: What occassion could not be improved by a well-placed "Attaboy, [insert name here]!"?
  • Waiter spills a drink on somebody? "Attaboy, Waiter!"
  • Some idiot puts his car in reverse instead of forward and plows through their garage at 35 mph? "Attaboy, Driver!"
  • A professional athlete who makes more money than the combined salaries of everyone on your favorite team fails to lead his team to a championship yet again? "Attaboy, A-Rod!"
  • A political leader with an outsize ego leads his country into war under false pretense and without a viable plan to eventually get out of it? "Attaboy...um, Luther!"

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