My esteemed blogging colleague Rick Brooks does a bit of cheerleading for TCM’s recent Saturday morning scheduling of Bowery Boys films…and I just wanted to kick in my two cents and say I’m enjoying the heck out of these guilty pleasures as well. I saw on Facebook a few days ago—courtesy of FB compadre Brent Walker, the co-author of the OOP Citadel tome The Films of the Bowery Boys (co-authored with David Hayes)—where the passing of gang member Charles J. “Buddy” Gorman at age 88 on the first of April went largely unnoticed. Gorman, who played “Butch” in Bowery Boys opuses like Blues Busters (1950) and Ghost Chasers (1951), would appear in a total of fourteen Bowery flicks from 1946 to 1951; he went largely unnoticed in these films as well (most of those actors were just there to remind you that Leo Gorcey had a gang) though he has a not-too-shabby part in Angels' Alley (1948) along with future Bowery Boys player Bennie “Butch” Bartlett. (So many Butches.) He also had bit parts in such TDOY favorites as Whistling in Brooklyn (1943), White Heat (1949), The Reckless Moment (1949) and the 1945 Universal serial The Master Key—but his best-remembered movie showcase to me is as a wise-cracking studio messenger boy in the Jack Carson-Dennis Morgan-Doris Day tune fest It's a Great Feeling (1949). R.I.P, Buddy—you will be missed.
(Update: I made some changes to this obituary since first posting this morning—I was able to Google the missing parts of the interview that blogger Missy Rosenberry did with Buddy in April 2009. It’s in three parts: one, two and three—and she also wrote up a nice little tribute shortly after his passing. The article is where I "liberated" the photos of the late Mr. Gorman.)
Speaking of Brent, you should not only check out his latest book—Mack Sennett’s Fun Factory, a staggering compendium on the studio owned by one of the pioneers of motion picture comedy—but his companion blog, Mack Sennett. And tell him I sent ya.