Happy Memorial Day and Happy Birthday James Arness!

Here in the US we are observing Memorial Day, in honor of those who gave their lives during war. It seems that every year I post a pic from Paths of Glory (1957) on this date, and this year is no exception. We thank those who made the ultimate sacrifice, and we pray that there be no more sacrifices asked for.

Paths of Glory promo still

On a less somber note, today we also celebrate the birthday anniversary of the late great James Arness, who was born on this date in 1923. Here he is about to put the smackdown on Timothy for being an abusive jerk to Virginia Baker in the Gunsmoke episode “The Gentleman,” first airing on June 7, 1958.

The Gentleman  - 1958

Video of the Week: “The Gentleman”

Our video for this week is the Gunsmoke episode “The Gentleman,” which first aired back on June 7, 1958. Timothy is Tiller Evans, the abusive suitor of saloon girl Boni Damon, played by Virginia Baker, who was married to (but separated from) Jack Palance at the time.

It’s frightening to watch Tim go from sweet to vicious in the space of about five seconds. It’s also rather irritating to see Marshal Dillon and Chester blame Boni for her predicament, rather than just say “Wow, that Tiller Evans is a jerk, he shouldn’t be hitting her like that. Let’s get him!” I know, it was the Fifties. Tim could now say that he was punched out on-screen by both Peter Graves and James Arness. How many actors can say that?

Pic of the Day: “House of Numbers” revisited

Our pic today is another from House of Numbers (1957), the prison drama with a twist directed by Russell Rouse. Timothy is uncredited as Frenchy, colorful cellmate to Arnie Judlow (Jack Palance). I’m fairly certain that’s supposed to be a hearing aid he’s fiddling with.

House of Numbers

Strangely enough, Tim also sported a hearing aid-like device (or maybe it’s a transistor radio?) in another of his prisoner roles, that of genial Nick in Convicts 4 (1962). A year after this film, he would manhandle Palance’s wife Virginia Baker in the Gunsmoke episode “The Gentleman” (6.7.58).

Pic of the Day: “Fifth Man in a String Quartet” revisited

Our pic of the day revisits the McCloud episode “Fifth Man in a String Quartet”. It was first broadcast on February 2, 1972. Timothy’s unnamed apartment house manager is taking McCloud (Dennis Weaver) to investigate the apartment of a musician suspected of murder.

Fifth Man in a String Quartet - 1972


If Tim had not been fired (I’m not 100% certain that’s what happened, but all signs point to it) from Duel at Diablo (1966), he would have worked with Weaver four times and not three. For sure they appeared together here, in the Gunsmoke episode “The Gentleman” (6.7.58), and in What’s the Matter with Helen? (1971).

Pic of the Day: “The Gentleman” revisited

Today we take another look at Tiller Evans, the abusive suitor of the Gunsmoke episode “The Gentleman”. It was first aired on June 7, 1958. He’s got Marshal Dillon (James Arness) in his sights, but it won’t be ending well for him.

The Gentleman - 1958

This episode was directed by fellow Brooklynite Ted Post. He enjoyed an almost 50-year career as a prolific director of television programming, including 56 episodes of Gunsmoke. He passed away just this past August at the age of 95.

Pic of the Day: “What’s the Matter with Helen?” revisited

Today it’s time for another look at the Curtis Harrington-directed shocker What’s the Matter with Helen? (1971). Timothy is briefly but memorably seen as a panhandling tramp in 1930s Hollywood. Here he thanks Adelle (Debbie Reynolds) and her beau Linc Palmer (Dennis Weaver) for their generosity and for “giving a damn.”

What's the Matter with Helen?

Tim had worked with both Reynolds and Weaver previously – with Reynolds in The Second Time Around (1961), and with Weaver in the Gunsmoke episode “The Gentleman” (6.7.58). He would work with him again the following year in the McCloud episode “Fifth Man in a String Quartet” (2.2.72). If Tim hadn’t been fired from Ralph Nelson‘s Duel at Diablo (1966), that would have made four times he’d worked with Weaver.

Pic of the Day: “The Gentleman” revisited

It’s way past time that we took another look at “The Gentleman,” the Gunsmoke episode that was first broadcast on June 7, 1958. Troublemaker supreme Tiller Evans is about to get his clock cleaned by Marshal Matt Dillon (James Arness). Right in front of Delmonico’s too! That can’t be good for business.

The Gentleman - 1958

If you search a bit, you may still be able to buy furniture from the Delmonico-Gunsmoke collection, which has apparently been discontinued. Bummer!