Wednesday, March 08, 2006

The Most Perfect Human Ever

Leave it to Billy Bob Thornton to nail it. It seems Thornton's favorite actor of all time is Don Knotts, the 6-time Emmy winner for his portrayal of Barney Fife on "The Andy Griffith Show" who passed away last week. "Don Knotts gave us the best character, the most clearly drawn, most perfect American, most perfect human ever," he says. Damn! But ya know, is that really so far off the mark? Was there a more authentic geek on television in the 1960s than the bug-eyed, rail-thin, twitchy, blustering Barney Fife? Then find me one.

Deputy Fife was always the last to know he was a fool, but that was how he earned our sympathy and empathy. Knotts also was the voice of the dolphin in a series of goofy animated movies, Mr. Limpet I think it was, and also regained a measure of fame as the sex-obsessed landlord in late period "Three's Company," but the perfect melding of actor and character was Barney Fife. He brought a lot of joy to a lot of people. Not a bad legacy.

See also:

Bruno Kirby
Steve Irwin
Gerald Ford, James Brown
Belson, O'Neil & Fender
Saddam Hussein
Larry Melman
Sean Taylor
Anthony Tortora
George Carlin
Bo Diddley
Yankee Stadium
Bush Presidency
Lux Interior
300,000 Egyptian Pigs
Jay Bennett
Carradine, Butera & Taylor
Farrah, Jacko
Lead Seed

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