The Little Rascals star Jackie Lynn Taylor has died, aged 88. The 1930s child star, who appeared in five Our Gang comedy shorts as Little Rascals leader Wally Albright's girlfriend Jane, passed away on Monday (05May14) in Citrus Heights, California.
The actress also appeared in the Laurel & Hardy films The Devil's Brother and Babes in Toyland.
Taylor, who later became one of the first female TV co-hosts in Southern California, wrote about her time as a silver screen movie star in 1970 book The Turned-on Hollywood 7.
Getty/Warner Bros. via Everett Collection
Every year, people all over the entertainment world pull together their lists of the best performances, actors, directors, film, and shows of the year, making special note of all of the newcomers who managed to breakthrough into the mainstream with exceptional projects in 2013. However, when we were running through out lists of the best breakout actors of the year, we happened to notice that many of our new favorite television characters bore some strong resemblances to some of our favorite characters from classic sitcoms.
With that in mind, we've picked 10 of our favorite breakout television stars of 2013 and cast them in roles from our favorite shows of yesteryear.
Joe Lo Truglio as Barney Fife from The Andy Griffith ShowAs the weird, bumbling, food-obsessed Det. Charles Boyle, Joe Lo Truglio has been stealing scenes week after week on Brooklyn Nine-Nine, and we think he could continue to put all of that strange ineptness to use as Barney Fife, the nervous, incompetent deputy to Andy Griffith's Sheriff Andy Taylor. Lo Truglio's proven that he excels at making life more complicated for others, and he would be able to portray the perfect mix of heart and humor.
James Wolk as Wally Cleaver from Leave It to BeaverJames Wolk specializes in characters that are charming, popular and intelligent, which makes him the perfect pick to play the Beaver's charismatic older brother. Sure, he's a lot older than Wally was on the show, but it's hard to think of an actor who would be better at portraying a character described by all of the girls as "the most," because as Zach on The Crazy Ones, Wolk is the most charming, funny and attractive actor on TV right now.
Tatiana Maslany as One of Charlie's AngelsIt's not quite a sitcom, but Charlie's Angels had the right combination of action and comedy that would make it the perfect vehicle for Orphan Black's Tatiana Maslany. On the show, she's proven that she can handle whatever twists and turns come her way, as well as being able to hold her own in a fight, but Maslany is also funny and charming enough to handle the show's more humorous moments with ease. Plus, with Maslany at the forefront, this would finally be a Charlie's Angels reboot worth watching.
Andre Braugher as Lou Grant from The Mary Tyler Moore ShowAndre Braugher's been a well-respected television actor for a long time now, but as Captain Ray Holt on Brooklyn Nine-Nine, he proved that he can handle comedy just as well — if not better — than he does drama. We think he'd be perfect to take on the role of Lou Grant, Mary Richards' tough but loving boss on The Mary Tyler Moore Show. He's already got plenty of experience keeping a group of goofballs in line, and it would finally give him the chance to break out and play something other than a cop for a change.
Malin Ackerman as Samantha from BewitchedJust try and put the terrible Nicole Kidman and Will Ferrell film out of your mind for a second, and instead picture Malin Akerman as the loveable witch struggling to balance her magical powers and her role as a normal housewife. Ackerman's honed her comedy chops on the new sitcom Trophy Wife, and her perky-yet-sarcatsic demeanor makes her the perfect choice to take on Samantha. Plus, she's proven that she's great with phsyical comedy, which will come in handy when it's time for her to wiggle her nose.
Nicole Beharie as Agent 99 on Get SmartA beautiful, intelligent, highly skilled agent tasked with balancing both her bumbling, confused sidekick and a top secret mission? It may sound like Nicole Beharie's Sleepy Hollow character Abbie Mills, but it's actually Agent 99 from the sitcom Get Smart, which proves that Beharie would be the ideal choice for the role. She's got the looks, smarts, and comedic chops to take on the slapstick spy comedy, but also has plenty of experience with the more action-intensive elements. On top of all that, she's a compelling actress, who would be able to give the character enough depth to keep her from being a complete caricature. Just add Tom Mison as Maxwell Smart, and you've got yourself a show.
Albert Tsai as Dennis from Dennis the MenaceAt only nine years old, Albert Tsai has become one of the biggest breakout stars of the year through his role as the quirky, hilarious Bert, one of Kate's stepsons on Trophy Wife. When it comes time for Tsai to properly break out, say into feature films or a reboot of a classic sitcom, we think there would be no better vehicle for him than as everyone's favorite troublemaker Dennis the Menace. He's got enough charm to keep Dennis loveable, despite his antics, but would also be able to give the character a much needed dose of weirdness.
Corey Stoll as Fred from I Love LucyAs Rep. Peter Russo on Netflix's House of Cards, Corey Stoll did most of the show's heavy emotional lifting. If he's looking for some lighter fare, we think he'd do a great job as Fred Mertz, the stingy husband of Lucy's best pal Ethel. Since Fred fought in World War I and lived through the Great Depression, it gives Stoll enough gravitas to ground the character, while also giving him plenty of screwball plots and slapstick comedy to keep things light and up-beat — plus, no Kevin Spacey around to manipulate all of his actions. It's a win-win.
Rebel Wilson in Her Own Version of The Carol Burnett ShowRebel Wilson's show Super Fun Night may not have done as well as many were expecting, but she's still had a pretty stellar year. We think that the best way for her to capitalize on that would be her own Carol Burnett-inspired variety show. She's already got plenty of experience writing sketches, and even created and starred in several sketch shows and comedies in Australia. And since she showcased her musical talents in last year's Pitch Perfect, she's become the ideal candidate to bring back the variety show format to a younger generation.
Michael Ealy as Lionel from The JeffersonsThough his new sci-fi drama Almost Human has only just begun airing, Michael Ealy has become one of the most popular new television stars, due to the perfect combination of good looks, charm and talent. We think all of those qualities would serve him well as Lionel Jefferson, the smart, kind, wise-cracking son of George and Louise. Ealy's already proven that he has enough charm to take on the part, but Lionel's complicated relationship with his father and his wife, Jenny, would give him plenty of opportunities to showcase his acting talent. With Ealy on board, there's no doubt that Lionel would become much more than just a funny supporting character.
Taylor Swift became something of a teen girl hero after weathering Kanye West’s “Imma Let You Finish, But... ” storm, championing over vapidity as the nerdy girl who gets the guy in the “You Belong With Me” video, and spreading her girl power all over the teen-skewing music industry like pixie dust. A dude breaks her heart? He becomes persona-non-grata to her millions of fans come time for her next album. Who needs him? In doing so, Swift has built a mini-empire on concert tickets, number-one-selling albums, merchandise, and anything she can put a picture of her face on.
There was a time in which Swift was the ultimate poster child for crushing all that boy drama into tiny, ground-up pieces and re-purposing it as fuel for her career and her seemingly endless success. Swift, while still the girliest of girls, was upheld as someone who was all about turning her experiences into industry. It was an admirable feat. It was mature. It was independent.
Now, as Swift's fiercest, angriest album yet sells big in stores all over the country, Harper’s Bazaar releases her most docile interview to date. Where Swift was previously concerned with making a name for herself and being a self-professed over-achiever, she now talks about letting her boyfriend “take the wheel,” touts a huge wardrobe dilemma (she can never wear the same dress twice, so she has to buy so, so many pretty dresses, you guys!), and gives us an idea of the only topic upstanding young ladies should talk about with their friends: boys!
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Yes, girls love dresses. Yes, all girls have boy problems and need to turn to their friends to air them. Yes, relationships should have give and take. But that’s not what Swift is saying here, and the fact of the matter is that the Fearless singer occupies a very sacred and important celebrity space: that of a powerful young girl who other young girls emulate and idolize. In this interview, she takes a mere second to say that’s she’s in control of her own financial destiny and descends immediately into a series of silly schoolgirl chats. Swift is given the chance to speak her mind and instead spends most of her time gushing over boys and pretty things — it puts a bit of a halt on her status as a role model. Although we know Swift is a dynamic young woman (or at least we hope that part of her still exists deep down), her interview reads more like a 1950s etiquette manual than that of a symbol of girl power.
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It’s a little dramatic, we know, but just take a look for yourself. Here’s a teen etiquette video from 1947 followed by a few choice quotes from Swift’s interview. They go together like sweetheart necklines and subservient housewives. Really.
'50s Etiquette Says: Boys like a girl because "she always looks nice ... especially when you compare her to some of the weird characters" out there.
Swifty Says: "Whether it's a summertime dress that makes me feel carefree, an evening cocktail dress that makes me feel fancy, or a vintage dress that makes me feel like a '50s housewife—which I enjoy feeling like, for some reason—I just really like dresses."
'50s Etiquette Says:Pretend you don't know anything about something a boy is interested in. Take Clara in the video, for instance. She says she knows nothing about gathering props for a play when she's actually way better at it than Wally. You're just a silly girl, who needs all this thinking?
Swifty Says:When she's with her friends, "We never talk about fashion, about career, about our ambitions or our projects ... We just talk about relationships, feelings, love, and boys." Yes, she does as all titans of of the music industry do: giggle about boys.
'50s Etiquette Says: Boys should make plans. "It's doing the girl no favor to leave it entirely up to her."
Swifty Says: "Relationships are the ultimate collaboration but it’s wonderful to hand over the reins to your boyfriend when you control so much of these big, high-pressure decisions, you know?"
'50s Etiquette Says: Bad boyfriends expect their girlfriends to have date ideas or take the initiative to call them.
Swifty Says: "If I feel too much like I’m wearing the pants, I start to feel uncomfortable and then we break up."
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Of course, we sincerely hope Swift hasn't lost her proclivity for spreading the girl power message (and with her usual excess of sparkles and polka dots), but seeing that her level of fame is so high, we're just hoping she stays away from any further comments that detract from her power as an artist and a role model for young women who measures her success in goals reached and not by the number of pretty dresses in her closet. Girl, we know you've got more in that brain. Use it!
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The God of Legion secular Hollywood’s latest Biblically-inspired action flick is old-school an angry spiteful Almighty with a penchant for Old Testament theatrics. Fed up with humanity’s decadent warmongering ways He’s decided to pull the plug on the whole crazy experiment and start over from scratch.
Fortunately for us the God of Legion is also a rather lazy fellow. Instead of doing the apocalyptic work himself and wiping us out with a giant flood which worked perfectly well last time He opts to delegate the task to His army of angels — a questionable strategy that starts to fall apart when the archangel charged with leading the planned extermination Michael (Paul Bettany) refuses to comply.
Michael who unlike his boss still harbors affection for our sorry species abandons his post and descends to earth where inside the swollen belly of Charlie (Adrianne Palicki) an unwed mother-to-be working as a waitress in an out-of-the-way diner sits humanity’s lone hope for survival. Why is this particular baby so important? Is it the one destined to lead us to victory over Skynet? Heaven knows — Legion reveals little details its script devoid of actual scripture. What is clear is that God’s celestial hitmen want the kid whacked before it’s born.
But Michael won’t let humanity fall without a fight. Armed with a Waco-sized arsenal of assault weapons he hunkers down with the diner’s patrons a largely superfluous collection of thinly-sketched caricatures from various demographic groups led by Dennis Quaid as the diner’s grizzled owner Tyrese Gibson as a hip-hop hustler and Lucas Black as a simple-minded country boy.
Together they mount a heroic final stand against hordes of angels who’ve taken possession of “weak-willed” humans turning kindly old grandmas and mild-mannered ice cream vendors into snarling ravenous foul-mouthed beasts. They descend upon the ramshackle diner in a series of full-frontal assaults commanded by the archangel Gabriel (Kevin Durand) the George Pickett of End of Days generals.
Beneath its superficial religious facade Legion is really just a run-of-the-mill zombie flick a Biblical I Am Legend. Bettany an actor accustomed to smaller dramatic roles in films like A Beautiful Mind and The Da Vinci Code looks perfectly at ease in his first major action role wielding machine guns and bowie knives with equal aplomb. Conversely first-time director Scott Stewart a former visual effects artist does little to prove himself worthy of such a promotion serving up some impressive CGI work but not much else worthy of note.