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: “The Gentleman” revisited

Our pic for today (and need I remind you to click to embiggen?) is a rather beautiful shot of Timothy as hateful Tiller Evans in the Gunsmoke episode “The Gentleman,” first airing on June 7, 1958. He has just gotten punched out by Marshal Dillon (James Arness) for being abusive towards Boni Damon (Virginia Baker), hostess at the Long Branch Saloon. Boni will soon be finding solace with “the gentleman” of the title, dapper Marcus France (Jack Cassidy).

The Gentleman - 1958

Tim had worked the previous year with Baker’s then-husband, Jack Palance, in House of Numbers. Also the previous year, he got punched out by Arness’ brother, Peter Graves, in Bayou. Hollywood’s a small town!

PS: Catch Tim in Bikini Beach and Beach Blanket Bingo tonight on Turner Classic Movies!