Thursday, May 8, 2014

Pop Quiz: Mystery Men

Back-to-back quizzes?! How hideous! But I'm still caught in the maelstrom of performing my show for three weeks and there are still two more to go, so I cannot devote the time needed in the evenings for TV & movie viewing, nor indulge in the photo work for one of my in-depth tributes. So here we go again. I recently did a quiz about identifying actresses from obscure or unusual photos. Now it's the men's turn! See if you know who the following celebrities, past and present, are. Some are difficult, some are less so, but hopefully the photos are enjoyable regardless. Play on! I don't really think I need to identify our cover boy today, but I will (Mario Lopez.)  He's not one of the subjects, but this vintage glimpse of him was amusing to me, so I used him as a appetizer!

1. Now for our first gentleman. I feel like this is a difficult one. Who knew that the useful character actor and theatre actor-director (and temporary victim of the Hollywood blacklist) that many of us know was once a brooding-looking hunk?!
2. This is a rather stark portrait of an actor whose career spanned a long period of time (1943-2000), but had some holes in the middle, mostly thanks to booze-related brawls and reputation-damaging behavior.
3. This "German count" is one of the 1950s' more appealing and handsome young male actors who really never got his due in the movies, but stayed busy on TV. He's a fave around here for, among other things, slinking around shirtless for part of a 1964 movie.
4. Does this tyke's face ring a bell at all? He emerged as one of filmdom's most successful and promising young men, though long time success was not to be.
5. There's some chub in the cheeks of this actor, who managed to find great success in both TV and the movies. His work in television made him a legend, but he also copped an Oscar nomination for one of his hit movies.
6. Who is this handsome tree-climber? A very busy 1960s leading man who then veered more into television as a guest on countless shows and in many TV movies.
7. My, what an imposing looking sheik we have here. He seems to have those wonderful luminescent eyes that worked so well in the early days of movie-making.
8. I feel like this one is a "gimme," but we'll see if it stumps anyone. A supporting player with some of Hollywood's big name stars, he then was sent to television before reinvigorating his screen career in a major way.
9. This is quite an exotic creature dripping in satin and pearls, quite an eye-poppingly scant get-up for the era.
10. Here's a rather cute-looking cowpoke, a far cry from the way I was first introduced to him when he was an older, more rotund troublemaker on television.
11. Who's this blond swinger in a Tarzan-like get-up? His character was actually called "Jackra the Magnificent" and the actor was usually seen a bit more buttoned up than this.
12. Those are some intense, pretty eyes, belonging to an actor with a highly up and down career, often playing heavies.
13. What a pretty pup this is. He grew up to be a popular and handsome 1940s and '50s leading man before essaying fatherly roles on TV and in a string of zany comedies.
14. Do you know this young'n? I don't think it should be too hard to identify who he is, a man who gave the world more than a few laughs over the course of his four-decade-long screen career.
15. Whoooaa! Check out the Brylcreemed 'do on this next gent! What a brooding, serious stare he has going on, too.
16. These soulful eyes and pouty lips belong to a man who would one day make women's hearts beat faster and their knees go weak, but not necessarily for the reasons implied.
17. Now this is a difficult one, I believe, but worth it just for a glimpse at the handsome devil shown below. A Mexican actor who got on board when "Latin lovers" were taking the movies and the world by storm, he enjoyed a long career as a supporting player that stretched into the early-1980s!
18. It probably won't be too difficult to discern the identity of this smartly-dressed young man, but it's a nice look at how pretty his eyes were in his youth. He eventually became one of the most famous movie stars on the planet.
19. This photo could have fit into half a dozen categories from ones about chests to one about bulges, but I opted to show it here. This humpy young man is less known for his acting than he is for other pursuits, but he has starred in a movie and costarred in a few others.
20. BONUS:  No, this isn't a man, baby, but I came upon this person after I'd already posted the quiz with ladies in it.  So she's tagging along here! Who is she?
And now.....  here come the answers!

1. That darkly handsome man who started off our quiz is Sam Wanamaker, an Emmy nominee for Holocaust (1978) and the costar of movies like Voyage of the Damned (1976), Private Benjamin (1980) and Baby Boom (1987) among many others.
2. Lawrence Tierney was a promising leading man in B pictures like Dillinger (1945), which the quiz photo is from, before a series of incidents caused him to lose out on decent roles, key friends and a steady career, despite his obvious talent. He appeared several times on Hill St. Blues (1985-1987) before scoring the hit Reservoir Dogs in 1992, among other notable parts, though he remained tough and confrontational practically to the end!
3. You can read all about John Ericson here. The photo above was from 1954's The Student Prince and the 1964 film mentioned is 7 Faces of Dr. Lao, in which he appears as a lascivious, seductive Pan who makes Barbara Eden lose her composure. Ericson also posed semi-nude in Playgirl (shown here with a lucky cub!)
4. The long-haired moppet above is River Phoenix, who starred in Stand by Me (1986), scored an Oscar nomination for Running on Empty (1988), won acclaim for My Own Private Idaho (1991) among other films, but who was dead at twenty-three of drug abuse.
5. This is "The Great One," Jackie Gleason, whose The Honeymooners (1952-1957 and again in the late '60s) made him a household name while The Hustler (1961) scored him an Oscar nod. Later, he scored a huge hit with Smokey and the Bandit (1977), leading to a raft of other late-career leading film roles.
6. The guy in the tree is Bradford Dillman, star of Compulsion (1959), Francis of Assisi (1961) and A Rage to Live (1965) among many others. He also had a featured role in The Swarm (1978.)
7. The scary sheik was Bela Lugosi, better known for wearing a different sort of cloak, that of Count Dracula in Dracula (1931), a role that, good or bad, cast a shadow over him for the rest of his life.
8. Roger Moore worked with Elizabeth Taylor in The Last Time I Saw Paris (1954), Glenn Ford in Interrupted Melody (1955) and Lana Turner in Diane (1956) before TV shows like The Alaskans (1959-1960), Maverick (1959-1961), The Saint (1962-1969) and The Persuaders (1971-1972.) He then became James Bond in seven blockbusters.
9. Our bejeweled snake charmer is legendary matinee idol Rudolph Valentino, who drove female fans into a frenzy with his roles in The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse (1921), The Sheik (1921), Blood and Sand (1922) and The Son of the Sheik (1926), among others, before his untimely death at only age thirty-one.
10. I don't think I was fully aware of how handsome Howard Duff was (or how pretty his eyes were) when he was a young actor in the 1940s and '50s. My first exposure to him came with his role as Titus Semple on Flamingo Road (1980-1982), though he had a long, busy career in front of the camera.
11. The leopard print hero shown above is Richard Denning in Beyond the Blue Horizon (1942) a Dorothy Lamour movie. Denning toiled for years in bit roles (and almost played Lucille Ball's husband on I Love Lucy having done the role on radio, but the real deal Desi Arnaz was used instead.) He starred on Mr. & Mrs. North (1952-1954), played Deborah Kerr's patient suitor in An Affair to Remember (1957) and had a long-time recurring role as the governor on Hawaii 5-O (1968-1980.)
12. Those big, beautiful eyes belonged to Dennis Hopper of Rebel Without a Cause (1955), Giant (1956) and Gunfight at the O.K. Corral (1957) who reemerged later as nasty pieces of work in Blue Velvet (1986), Speed (1994) and Waterworld (1995) among others.
13. The pout-lipped hunk is Fred MacMurray of Double Indemnity (1944), The Egg and I (1947), My Three Sons (1960-1972), The Absent-Minded Professor (1961), Follow Me, Boys! (1966) and many others.
14. Stan Laurel is more readily identifiable when seen with his long-time comedy partner Oliver Hardy or in his customary black hat. Laurel & Hardy are one of the screen's most unforgettable comedy acts.
15. The sedate, pompadoured guy above is none other than silver screen wacko Jerry Lewis who, after splitting with his partner and straight man Dean Martin, starred in kooky vehicle after kooky vehicle (while also devoting countless hours to telethons benefiting muscular dystrophy.
16. The handsome guy in question is none other than horror legend Vincent Price!
17. The dazzlingly dark hunk is Gilbert Roland, of Call Her Savage (1932), She Done Him Wrong (1933), Beneath the 12-Mile Reef (1953), Cheyenne Autumn (1964), Islands in the Stream (1977) and many others.
18. John "The Duke" Wayne rode the western genre to tremendous heights with the occasional war movie or other departure along the way, winning an Oscar for True Grit (1969.) How many of us knew that it was Miss Streisand who presented it to him?!
19. The shirtless slab of beefcake is former Los Angeles Raider Howie Long, who starred in Firestorm (1998) and had roles in Broken Arrow (1996) and 3000 Miles to Graceland (2001.) Now a sportscaster (and still drop dead handsome), he had a popular, if bewildering, series of TV ads for Radio Shack in which Teri Hatcher was paired with him. In his prime (lower right anyone?) he was about as good-looking as it is possible for anyone to be!
20. Our slinky swimsuit-wearer is Jane Leeves of Frasier (1993-2004) and Hot in Cleveland (2010-present.) She won her part on Frasier after performing recurring roles on both Murphy Brown (1989-1993) and Seinfeld (1992-1998.)


John Gray said...

Your best blog to date

joel65913 said...

I did better with the women but still got 16 out of 20. I missed John Ericson, Bradford Dillman, Bela Lugosi and Richard Denning.

Fred MacMurray certainly was a looker when her was young.

Jerry Lewis' hair is an architectural marvel.

Knuckles Girlyskirt said...

Failed again...(heavy sigh)

Of course, I have trouble recognizing friends and family in old photos.

In any case, I loved the shot of Valentino. He certainly was a chic sheik.

Scooter said...

Lot's of fun!

Poseidon3 said...

Thanks, John! Joel, you are GOOD.... Knuckles, have no fear, it's all in fun. Scooter, great to see your name again! We've missed you.

NotFelixUnger said...

I am ashamed to report I got Roger Moore and Jane Leeves correct. That is it. I failed miserably on all the others. I am definitely losing my homo mojo.