« The Way I Heard It with Mike Rowe

Episode 150: Dude Looks Like a Lady

2020-02-25 | 🔗

She broke the glass ceiling with ease.  But her secret was taken to the grave.

This is an unofficial transcript meant for reference. Accuracy is not guaranteed.
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Hey, there's, microphones where I heard of the only pod cares for the curious mind with short attention span. This is absurd one fifty, while one hundred and fifty these things in the can- and it's called dude looks like a lady. Dude looks like a lady with allergies to Arrowsmith and Stephen Tyler, and borrowing the title of their famous song, because I think it fits perfectly with the story that you are about to hear story, that's really a rumination of sorts on these confusing times in which we find ourselves where judging books by their covers is always a wise thing to do. Sometimes the lady looks like a dude, and sometimes the dude looks like a lady.
All will be explained in a bit more detail during the story you're about to here and in the segment that follows backed by popular demand. The way I talked about the way I heard it wherein I'll relay some of the circumstances that led to the writing of the story. You're about to hear a big thanks. First of all, to my friends at Wolverine who were sponsoring episode. Many of you know I wear Wolverine boots, I'm partial to their thousand miles, which I've enjoyed now for the last fifteen years, or so. You should pick up a pair over wolverine dot com, Slash MIKE and save yourself. Twenty bucks with the MIKE promo code a purchase over a hundred dollars. But it's a thousand miles. Aren't your thing. Do me a favor just just go over there and poke around because they really do make the best work.
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It's such a nice thing to do, and I really do appreciate it. They have also contributed over two hundred thousand dollars to our work ethic scholarship programme. So I want to thank him for that, encourage you to apply for work ethic scholarship right now through March, from trying to give away million bucks. Won't you help its harder than you think. That's over micro works, dot, Org check out work, ethic, scholarships there and pick. If there's a pair of boots in your future. Please give my friends: it will remain a shot. You'll be glad you did, will reign dotcom. Slash, might save twenty bucks a check out on any purchase over a hundred dollars when you enter in my name. Having said all that, you know what this is. This is the way I heard it episode. One fifty and trust me dude looks like a lady. The year was nineteen forty three and power
dozing on the set of another action movie like most stuntman pal, could pretty much everywhere, even in the middle of a hectic set sitting x to him was his manager, a man who now wondered, if twenty one year old, client, whatever get them He deserved you see, unlike most stuntman pal, could actually act and, unlike most actors pal had no ego. He never complained about the hazards of his profession or wind about where his name might appear in the credits, if, indeed, it appeared at all today, he didn't care that he was doubling for the leading lady, something a lot of stuntman might have resisted in short, Paul, never said. No, maybe that's why everybody liked him, maybe That's why everybody called impel. Pals big break came later that afternoon, when the leading lady on the film through a hissing fit on the bank.
So the San Joaquin River, specifically she refused to jump into the water as the script required. It's not did. She couldn't swim. It's just that the current was swift the breeze, was cold and frankly, she didn't want to get her hair wet and besides. Why should she is why she had a stunt double in the first place. The director was not pleased Fred Wilcox wanted his star to fully embrace her role as the next female. Action hero, a role he thought might lead to a sequel and may even a franchise. Wilcox didn't expect to do all of her own stunts, but surely jumping to a river was not unreasonable request for the next female action hero was it well it was no use after much pleaded
and cajoling the leading lady returned to her trailer and Wilcox called PAL. Actually, he called pals manager who found his favorite client napping again this time under an oak tree, by the craft services tent rise and shine pretty boy, the directors waiting for his down by the river. Let's go pal got up and followed his manager over to hair and make up not as well every part of the job, but the old, demanded it and when you're done calling for a leading lady will you do it how to do. Twenty minutes later freshly quaffed looking decidedly feminine power. I was standing on the banks of the San Joaquin River, the director exe. Lamed exactly what the scene required and pow listened attentively. Actually, his manager listened attend Thirdly, thou just sat quietly under all that hair waiting for
I want to say action at which point PAL earned his keep springing to life. He bolt down the river bank and dove headlong into the swirling current swimming hard for the opposite shore, like the natural athlete, he was in hindsight Wilcox had been wise to call a pro. The currents were much stronger than he had realized And pile was hard pressed to make it a cross, but the direct was also wise to position himself on the opposite shore capture piles, dramatic exit from the rushing river on camera, because in that way the twenty one year old, stunt double did exactly what his manager had told him to do. He can t You'd on with the scene with the performance, the changed his life.
If you look at the footage on Youtube, you'll see a serious act or doing some of his best work, never mind Meissner or so Slav, Ski or Strasbourg or whatever other method. Today's this being prattling on about this was something altogether different, an instinctive dual performance: filled with new once and subtlety, not at all what the director expected from a stunt. Double The raw emotion on his face said Wilcox. It was sublime The way he dragged himself through the mud, exhausted and quivering, I could not help but weep. As I watched him, it was magic, Fred Wilcox was so impressed with pals performance. He fired his leading lady on the spot and for the role to her stunt double the title role. Naturally, pal accepted his manager accepted, but it's safe to assume that power was, on board a job.
The job. After all, even if it meant playing a girl brave girl, as it turned out, who climbed mountains, leaped over yawning chasms, face down, wild animals got shot at and, of course, swam across A raging river. All by herself, you might be tempted. Compare pals performance to Robin Williams- in MRS Doubt, fire or Dustin Hoffman in Tutsi, but that would miss the point because, unlike rob and Dustin POW never broke character, once even when he was offscreen doing press after the fact release this twenty one year old stunt double embodied the female. He portrayed, of course, in people years. Pow was only three when he assumed the identity of his leading lady and agreed to leave his name off of the credits. Actually, that decision
was made by Rudd whether wax the manager who guided pals career from the very beginning. You see rod. Whether wax believed that pals gender should remain a secret from his many millions of fans M Gm concurred? Thus, no one ever imagined that underneath all that hair America's latest feed male action hero was really a boy, a very good boy with a very savvy manager who carefully groomed his favorite client for the role of a lifetime a role that would send pow leaping into a raging river. Only to emerge on the opposite bank with a brand new name, a name they gave rod whether wax a Hollywood franchise,
worth over two hundred and fifty million dollars, not a bad return for the manager whose best friend live to the ripe old age of one hundred and twenty six. That the eighteen in dog years, of course, but still a pretty good run for the beloved Kali that Everyone called pal until he became female action hero. Everyone members as Lassie anyway. That's the way I heard or to say this, thing in a slightly different way. The lassie was a lady.
This is the way I talked about the way I heard it where, in I attempt to relieve some of the circumstances that led to the writing of the store you just heard and share. Perhaps a few pertinent facts. I wasn't able to include in the tale that I think you might find of past interest. This story happened as the result of a phone call between myself and my friend, Susan Susan's, a wonderful writer, terrific researcher, with whom I collaborate from time to time on the pot gas and we were discussing, who should be the next James bond Daniel Craig, apparently is hanging up, which means a new actor will be chosen to play James Bond, and I have some strong feelings about this, and so does Susan. In fact, we each want the same guy. What about you, do you care who plays an Ex James bond. You have a strong opinion. We, the kind of person who meets a character. The page then forms in your minds. I a visual zation of what that character looks,
and are you further the kind of person who goes to a theater and then becomes disappointed when the actor or actress on the screen doesn't look like the character, as you imagined I am. This happened to me in two thousand five, when I went to see Jack richer, Lee Childs Jack, richer, only child is the author and Jack reaches his creation and its work.
Jack's, one of the greatest modern day literary characters. I think he's a mountain of a man. Six, six two hundred and forty pounds he's indestructible: an unstoppable force of nature portrayed in the film by Tom Cruise now with respect to Tom cruising fine actor, but he's what five seven five eight he's. Just it's just not Jack REACH and no amount of reaching would permit me to see him in the title role just took me completely out of the movie. Consequently, I didn't like the film, so I point this out, because the actor I'd like to see play James Bond is a terrific british act
named address Elba, who happens to be a black man? So so what's my problem, why am I ok? Why am I perfectly fine, with a black actor, portraying a white character but unable to tolerate a short actor portraying a tall character? What's that say about me, nothing great, obviously, by biases my prejudices being what they are for, whatever reason I I struggle with the with the physicality as opposed to the color of the skin, but that's dumb, because an actor doesn't have any more control over the color of their skin than they do their height. So I mention this to my friend Susan who says well yeah you're right then so you wouldn't have a problem with the with the woman playing James Bond well well. Well, I said why would you would you
It's our kind of I am a woman play James Bond and she said well. Why not? I mean the argument follows besides in ancient Greece, and I think she shakespearian plays many times. Men would play roles of women. Why could no woman play the role of a man but change body? Serious, I said. Look if you can find an example in modern Cinema where something like that happen. I might rethink it, but right now, Dignan my heels. No James bond can be played by women and which Susan says well what about lassie? I said our crap she's right. I had forgotten that lassie was portrayed by a male dog. In fact, most every dog I think is on on screen is: is a mail? There might be some exceptions but they're almost always males, because
No, what females do they shed? They shed more than males and that creates all kinds of continuity problems. So Susan proceeds to send me all this research, some really interesting articles on how pal came to be the first female action hero, that sort of the premise that that I ran with and that's how the story came to be. The truth is, I also wrote it because I was fascinated by the relationship between Rudd, whether wax and pal. I love my dog I've loved every dog I've ever had.
But man I dont know than anybody- is ever loved a dog like Rudd, whether wax loved his power and for good reason and pity made him a fortune. For one thing he got the pub when it was eight months old. A guy named Howard Pack gave it to him and said: look this dog won't stop barking and he chases motorcycles. Can you fix him and rubbed said short well turns out. He couldn't he fixed the barking problem, but pal to his final days, couldn't help himself. He
ways, chased motorcycles, and this guy Howard Pack was disappointed and set out on what the dog back so read said our it I'll keep the dog in, and you can keep the money that you would have spent and that's how we got the dog and you know how pow became Lassie. I just I just told you, but I didn't tell you what really happened at the end of the run. Lassie come home was the name of the movie in the story and the book by Eric Night back in nineteen, forty that launched the whole thing, but after Lassie come home, pass the heart in.
Son of Lassie, courage of Lassie, the hills of home? The sun comes up challenge to Lassie the painted hills, half a dozen films and by nineteen fifty two m GM called Red, whether wax and said. Okay, we had a good run, but we're done and are right said: ok, you're me forty thousand dollars for the last season, an M Gm said: fine will send you the check and then read said or or you can do
your money and give me the rights to Lassie, while the studio had no interest in Lassie at that point, so they said sure and that's when Rudd, whether wax and pow got lassie on television, and that is what turned into a monster franchise generated over two billion dollars in today's money and made everybody rich. The other thing I ll leave you with regarding Rudd when PAL died at eighteen in people years, he went Wanna know, depression, couldn't leave the house, couldn't watch television for fear of seeing a promo for Lassie, certainly watch any the films you love PAL, so much. He was just completely devastated when he died and you know what it serves them right, because you know what else at whether wax did he trained old, yellow- and I don't know if you, if you ve, seen all the ehler, but if you haven't spoiler,
There is a fight with a wolf, he gets rabies and they walk him out back and they have to shoot him. It was the most up. Setting thing I ever saw on the big screen. I was a kid when they shot old, yellow and I swear it damn near broke me thanks right, whether wax rest in peace, you and pow and and all of the other canine friends who we ve lost over the years anyway. This has been the way I talked about the way I heard. I hope you liked it if you Let me know when my facebook I'll come back and do it again next week time permitting, but I'll be back with another story, one way or the other. You can count on that till then
Transcript generated on 2020-02-29.