UnXplained Ends Too Soon?

 DATELINE:  Shatner Show Sort of Ends…

 Survivor Mysteries!

For the first batch of the UnXplained series, Shatner hosted a bunch of tales of survival and unusual, perhaps supernatural, abilities that caused people to overcome the worst odds. Now, the most extraordinary of these survival oments came when a commercial interrupted the series, and William Shatner himself promised us that the series is not done, after all, and will return “soon.”

Such a threat actually became a delight.

The series brought its limited run to another intriguing close with an episode that again brought disparate episodes into a kind of cohesive pattern.

We saw a six-year old boy, lost in wilderness, who walked 18 miles overnight to find a road to safety. He felt something was following him: coyotes, or something else. How he chose to make the right turns is something inexplicable all right. But he did it.

One of the hosts ofAncient Aliens recounted his boyhood experience, also unusual, when time stood still and he was able to rescue a 13-year old friend from going over a waterfall to certain death.

Another tale, close to our heart and chilling to our personal experience, related to a Titanic survivor, one of the bakers, whose story is often recounted in movies as an episode that many would call fictionalized. The wonderful scenes are from A Night to Remember!

Yet, the baker who was soused, inebriated, managed to survive in below freezing water for two hours when most others who fell into the Atlantic died, of hypothermia, in ten minutes.How did it happen? Why? No one can explain.

There was the tale of the man whose parachute did not open, and he fell three mile—defying all physical laws to end up with a broken spine (that also miraculously healed) and he was able to walk away from what should have been sure death.

And, one of the other tales told a weird, extra-sensory experience about a British woman, Clare Henry, whose avoidance of a foggy car crash that should have killed her was owed to a casual friend who had recently died in a car crash.

Yes, that friend was Princess Diana who appeared before Clare and directed her to pull off the road before she would have been killed in multi-car pileup.

 

The moments gathered together all featured some rising above physical laws and physics to areas of puzzling survival. There are hints of guardian angels and directive spirits, protective forces, and other dimensions, yet as some of the experts note:  these things have not been studied by science enough to figure out if there are forces in the universe that transcend our world.

 

Yes, we want old bill Shatner’s show to return.

 

 

 

 

 

Dorian to Visit Oak Island

 Trump Can’t Find Nova Scotia on US Map!

DATELINE: Hurricane Dorian On Schedule to Hit Oak Island!

 Expect a special episode of Drilling Down on Oak Island, and additional footage on Curse of Oak Island when the series begins in November.

With all the celebrity visitors to the treasure hunting Lagina brothers, it seems only natural that in their seventh season they become interrupted by an unwanted visitor. A storm is brewing out in the Atlantic, west of Greenland.

Yes, tourism is a big business on the little island, and they are making the most of it with the TV series inspiring a renewed interest in the Nova Scotia properties. It’s just a skip and hop from New England to drive up there.

Property values have never been higher, and with Americans ready to bail out on a crypto-Nazi takeover of the government, you may find that a couple of small islands are paradise. After all, during the American Revolution, the colonists spent time there.

Unlike today’s tourists, Dorian is going by sea. A direct hit. Put two lanterns in Rick Lagina’s steeple. We heard that Trump wants to send a crew to help with any cleanup—because he thinks Nova Scotia is part of Greenland.

Down from his Cat 5 angry self, the hurricane now denuded into a tropical storm will stay out in the North Atlantic, passing over the area where Titanic rests two miles below the ocean, unfazed by the churning waves above, and the storm will lash out at Alex Lagina and Gary Drayton if they haven’t gone back to Michigan looking for gold bricks under the lake.

The Laginas have run out of places to dig by now, and they have tackled draining the swamp, but are keeping their boggy findings to themselves, lest it hurt the ratings. However, if Dorian dumps another five or ten inches of water into the swamp, it may be a hopeless delay resulting in another season of tedious pumping out of the area.

There is a ship down there in the muck, perhaps about as rotten from wood eating bacteria as the Titanic is from metal-eating bacteria.

Of course, gold coins cannot be eaten by bacteria, if ever there were any treasure to begin with. After all, why build an elaborate tunnel system if you’re leaving the treasure in a sunken ship in a swamp?

 

 

While England Collapsed

DATELINE:  Boris Bad Enough?

 Boris Brexist

If watching the British version of Trump has any productive value, the nitwit of England, Boris Yeltsin Johnson is going down the tubes. His government is crumbling on national TV. The usually civilized Brits have painted themselves blue and are on the tribal attack, not seen since the Romans found it necessary to build Hadrian’s Wall.

Brexit’s wall is something akin to Trump’s wall, via Hadrian the Emperor (he was the guy who made his boyfriend a god).

We are now learning our history and not from the History Channel where we thought everything was a conspiracy of ancient aliens and golden treasure hunters.

It now appears that the British constitution isn’t worth the paper it’s written on. For a thousand years, politicians in England have trusted the goodwill of politics, which now seems naïve at best. There is no written constitution in Britain, and that is certainly not what keeping  the Trumpian term  “great” in Great Britain.

Indeed, Trump has wondered if England will ever be great again, or if it will continue to sleep the fitful nightmare of a leader with a massive flow of hair that indicates hyperbole lives even in the land of Queens.

TV ratings on the popular TV show about a great British bake-off have gone south. The big climax is a contest on making cookies (which the Brits call biscuits) while the government crumbles.

You can expect America’s great stable genius and expert on everything with his theory of know-nothing to enter the fray and make matters worse. It will be the red-coat revenge for Yorktown’s surrender.

 

Dangerous Hunting Game

 DATELINE: Richard Connell Classic

 Fay Wray Sees Something!

If you are looking for the prequel to 1933’s King Kong,you will have found it with this first major adaption of Richard Connell’s famous (or infamous) story called The Most Dangerous Game.

Right from the opening credits, you will recognize the style and tone of the classic big monkey movie. That’s for a number of reasons: foremost, the producers of the Kong and Son thereof films honed their approach to the topic with this classic.

You have the basic premise of a sea captain taking his ship and passengers out into remote and uncharted waters where lurks an island with mystery. It almost seems like the same prologue to each film.  Officers are concerned with strange locales not on maps.

Instead of Bruce Bennett (or is that Cabot), you have interchangeable leading man Joel MacRae as the resilient young adventurer. When he is washed up on the shores of a strange island, he meets none other than Kong’s leading lady, Fay Wray, who is also stranded there with her brother, played by—you guessed it—the man who gave us the Eighth Wonder of the World—Robert G. Armstrong (not Carl Denham this time, but a ne’er-do-well with the same personality).

They are the guests not of a giant gorilla but of the King of the Island, General Zaroff, (played in slimeball style of the 1930s by Leslie Banks). It seems he has a strange fetish: he likes to hunt big game that is truly dangerous, like people. Back in those pre-Hitler times, he was not a Nazi, crypto-Nazi, or neo-Nazi, but some kind of twisted member of the aristocracy.

With its chase scenes through the jungle, the pounding music, and the production values of Merriam C. Cooper, you have a sense of been-there, done-that, from the next year version of King Kong.

It is a delight to feel the similarity, and you keep wondering where the dinosaurs are.

 

The Last Monarch

DATELINE: Birth & Rebirth

Seasons come and go, and so does life. We were surprised to see a late season chrysalis on the nearby tree. We waited for the inevitable cycle of birth and transformation. The beautiful green cocoon with its threaded gold leaf like a zipper held firm in the wind.

And so we waited for the inevitable blackness to befall it.

 

Usually within 24 to 48 hours after turning black, the chrysalis will start to crack open like an egg, and the inside beauty shall emerge—depending on weather and dryness. But it was chilly lately, the end of a coolish summer.

   Our last vision was of the Monarch flying south for the winter, heading for Mexico, perhaps, as long as ICE did not stop him at border!

Madhouse/Funhouse/Nuthouse & Then Some!

DATELINE: One Last American International Horror

 

 

 Cushing & Price

 

Madhouse is a nuthouse extravaganza movie with a funhouse spirit.

Vincent Price finished up his American International contract, which featured so many classic Edgar Allan Poe tales done outrageously, that it seemed inevitable that he would go out with a blaze. Here, he plays a movie star who made a bunch of movies as “Dr. Death,” a hideous murderer. Art imitates life here.

His career went south when he was accused of cracking up and murdering his fiancée. Whether he did it or not is the crux of the horror. You may find more than a fair share of suspects trying to “gaslight” the old star.

Well, after a dozen years in a madhouse, he returns to acting to star, good grief, in a TV series based on his infamous character.

If you haven’t guessed that most of the funhouse nuthouse stuff is all tongue-in-cheek, you miss more than most of the Hammer House parody.

Joining Price is Peter Cushing as his best friend, fellow actor, and screenwriter of all those grisly murder movies.

If that is not spicy enough for you, A-I studios dug up their two other favorite stars of the 1960s—Boris Karloff and Basil Rathbone—and featured them in amusing cameos. It’s no mean feat, as the two legendary stars were long-gone for about a half-dozen years by the time this film was before the cameras.

You have to love a movie that begins with everyone watching a film in a Hollywood mansion with the final credits rolling out the words, “The End” in blood red letters.

If shameless overacting isn’t your thing, then you may not appreciate the golden opportunity Price has been given: he even dresses the part, in white trench coat and matching fedora.

There is even an O.J. Simpson moment when Scotland Yard has everyone try on the murderer’s glove: if it fits, you know the rest…So, O.J.’s lawyers found the idea in this movie!

Playing Mr. Toombes, Price puts a cutrate on fellow cast members as they are all mysteriously dispatched as the new TV series takes place at British studios. It is a nicely set film with solid production values to make you forget this is what a good cast and production team can do with a low-budget.

 

 

 

 

Dorian Blows Trump’s Mind!

DATELINE: Hard Blow to Blowhard

With Hurricane Dorian threatening the United States, we have had political opportunist Trump leading the charge to show his humanitarianism. Talk about fake news!

After denigrating the hurricane when it seemed about to hit Puerto Rico, he charged the political hacks of the island had willed the storm to hit them. Of course, it veered away, and so did Trump’s inane and malicious comments.

Now we expect Trump to request that a nuke be dropped into the eye of the hurricane—but only when it reaches Baltimore.

Next, Dorian was poised to hit Trump’s beloved Winter White House, the former Post estate, now labeled his golf course of choice.

This gave the President an opportunity to wax eloquent about the great people in Florida for whom he cared so much—especially since he needs the state and its voters for re-election.

Cynics may charge that his concern for the “average voter” corresponds to self-interest. That might be unfair until the Imbecile-in-Chief held a press conference and announced that Dorian was going to put the great Trump state of Alabama in harm’s way.

This caused some widespread consternation among meteorologists: the storm is nowhere near Alabama, but its voters are on the pea-brain of Trump. He was corrected about his geographic idiocy, but he managed to repeat the wrong assertion again later in the day’s tweets. He is, at best, slow on the uptake.

If that is not enough to roil your storm warnings, Trump said that he had never heard of a Category 5 hurricane before this week. However, enterprising reporters uncovered a half-dozen times he said the same thing over the past three years.

It seems you cannot teach an old dog much of anything.

Séance at Spring Village

DATELINE: Titanic Spirits Beckon Us!

 Five Who Dared!

Apparently, we are the first ones to hold a séance at Spring Village since the Titanic sank.

You would think that someone around here might have done conducted some kind of paranormal event—considering that two of the residents died on Titanic. And, also, considering that the neighborhood has been rife with ghost tales for nearly two-hundred years, we are ripe for supernatural activity.

Good heavens, even those two who perished on that ill-fated voyage of 1912 were well-aware they lived in a haunted house. It’s a point hard to ignore when orbs and bumps in the night are everywhere.

It seems to us that what goes around comes around.

If you live over a natural mineral spring that Native Americans felt was some kind of ancient vortex and miracle cure for what ails you, you may have a good site for reaching other dimensions.

Since the Titanic went down in the frigid Atlantic, Albert Einstein theorized that wormholes and other tunnels warped time and space, making it even more likely that beings from another time and place might go wherever they wished.

And, wouldn’t two who died on Titanic make an appearance at the ancestral home?

Since moving here, I have been an advocate that something odd and decidedly paranormal has been taking place in the vicinity. It became more imperative when the activity seemed to center on me personally, as if one spirit wanted me to write his life story. Well, I did: it’s called Tales of a Titanic Family, and then I followed it up with something more about his life and death, entitled Chess-Mate from Titanic.

Perhaps even that has not been enough. So, we have arranged a séance here in the house where a library is dedicated to Richard White, a college student whose graduation gift was a first-class ticket to oblivion and infamy on Titanic.

Oh, he has been hanging around me for decades, but I never paid it no mind until something brought me to a place that I learned was his home. No, I had no idea when first I came here.

Recently, we had a group of ghost hunters, led by Susan Allen and Eric Metzler, and capped off with a special assistance from Kadrolsha Ona, the celebrity Queen of Paranormal.

Unlike Houdini, and his 100+ seances that he usually debunked, we had two video cameras and a plethora of audio tape recorders for the standard EVPs (electronic voice phenomenon to you novices).

Call us ready or not. The séance went off with plenty of hitches: It was not what I expected—we developed sea sickness, mal de mer on the deck of Titanic, and one spirit went hysterical on us, looking for her husband who was not allowed on a lifeboat with her.

Have we learned a lesson from this tampering with the unknown? Not really, as we plan to do a follow-up in September.

 

Dr. Russo’s books on Titanic are all available in print and e-book formats. The latest is Titanic Mysteries on Mill Circle. A book on the seance will be available before the 2020 New Year.

Shatner Show Tackles Remote Viewing

DATELINE: Brain on the Download

  

If irony lives, it is in the form of William Shatner hosting, forty years after Leonard Nimoy, a TV series about the unexplainable. It’s called inexplicably, The Un-Xplained.

In this week’s intriguing episode, Shatner asks about the capability of the human mind, and one of the concepts is “remote viewing,” or what we may have called the medium’s channel: séance.

Science has christened séance as a purely scientific endeavor, not paranormal.

Taking it out of the supernatural realm, the notion of remote views tells us that the mind—and gifted people—can see other places, other times, and collect data that is both historical and futuristic. We are aboard, Captain Kirk. Let’s go where no man has gone before.

We have been postulating the theory that we are not reincarnations of trans-dimensional beings, but that trans-dimensional beings channel us to see the world they once knew and receive updates on the human condition. It is one step beyond being a zoo specimen for those of us who are the orbs of another world.

Among the brain issues examined during this intriguing hour episode, we discover acquired savant syndrome—in which a man received a bump on the head, soon becoming a concert pianist without ever showing interest previously.

Remote viewing was shown to work in solving crimes by Los Angeles police, and used by the Pentagon first during the Iranian hostage crisis of 1979. It was a means to identify people and their treatment while in captivity. Nothing was drawn to parallel séance—except to note that remote views have occurred in certain individuals for thousands of years, giving them an ability to see what happened at great distances at greater times. Soothsaying by another name?

Quickly moving toward the concept of downloading brain information, the show glossed over moral issues and whether a computer version of your brain would have consciousness.

Indeed, there seemed to be an opinion that the brain was wired to outside forces, like an Internet of the universe, tied to wormholes and other dimensions.

We have pondered whether remote viewing is a two-way street. Can the conscious entities of the past (trans-dimensionals) be looking at the world through us.Are we the channel for them?

Perhaps they see us as a spirit orb in their dimension, just the way we see them here and now.

 

 

 

 

Astrology Over Astronomy for Ancient Aliens

DATELINE: Return to Oak Island

   Crossover Taylor!

It’s Labor Day weekend, and Ancient Aliens is about to wrap Season 14 with its 13thepisode on how a “Constellation Code,” may prove that aliens gave secret information to humans through messages in the stars. This also is another misleading episode, differing from  the one advertised for showing all week.

For several weeks Ancient Aliens has engaged in some bait-and-switch tactics when it comes to keeping the contents of the new release private. Again this week, the episode is not what they claimed it would be:  why? The series may be more secretive than the National Security Council of the Trump Administration.

Well, if Ancient Alien theorists are to be believed, our academic intelligentsia is about as dumb as the rocks they cannot turn over. Though many scientists debunk the fortune-telling that comes from reading the stars to predict the future, Ancient Aliens revels in it.

Now, they say the mirror effect that puts star constellations as part petroglyph buildings and monuments is proof that aliens gave early culture a heads up about who they were and where they came from: two places seem to be the most frequently copied on earth as ground-level star maps—and these could be the origins of alien life that seeded earth.

They even trot out Travis Taylor’s visit earlier this year to Oak Island (featuring the Lagina brothers) where he showed how the island is actually a place with key stones aligned that are stars in the heavens. What does it all mean? Why is this evident? He has no idea.

Robert Clotworthy’s voice-over is on familiar ground this week. He almost seems to be doing a promo for the upcoming season of Curse of Oak Island.

Giorgio visits Italy to look at monuments that again seem to indicate constellations in the night sky. The only reason for this, the theorists insist, is to show that ancient people knew their gods were actually space creatures. They even go one step beyond this twilight zone to say 90% of people know their zodiac sign, more proof that the message “we are not alone” is writ big in the sky.

Our Worst Fears about Gronk

DATELINE: Water on the Brain?

Gronk (retired New England Patriot tight end Rob Gronkowsky) gave a rather humorless presser the other day in which he made some fairly peculiar statements in layman terms.

He alarmed us greatly when he began to talk about liquids in his brain, caused by football injury.

In his own simplistic way, he may have spoken about a hideous condition that surely means he would be mad to return to football. He discussed the ways you may recover and find some balm for the body and mind after the cruel sado-masochism of playing a game that makes jousting in armor appear to be civilized.

Gronk used terms that reminded us of the old phrase, “water on the brian.” You don’t hear it much anymore. It was a misleading term about spinal fluids unable to flow out of the head region. Doctors mght have called it “hydroencephalus” many decades ago.

Today it might better be explained in terms of concussion sysdrome: that repeated brain injury that has led former players to die too young, too suffer too much, to kill themselves, and to become violent shadows of their pleasant selves.

We think of former Patriot Junior Seau. Some players have donated their brains to research. It is frightful.

Gronk admitted that his brain injuries have given him mood swings already. He is not yet 30. If anyone wants to encourage him to return to the place that is already making his future a nightmare, they are greedy, mindless fans of a bloodsport.

We hope it is still early enough for full recovery for Gronk, though we fear that damage to the brain has been done and even in healing there will be scars, both mental and physical.

Liquids in his head and water on the brain, the end product of hydroencephus or concussions, is the horror no one in the NFL wants to face directly. Yes, they are men paid handsomely for the privilege of being media stars and marvels of physical heroism.

The price, we fear, may be far more devastating. It might make young stars like Gronk a shadow on the Moon, like a werewolf or cursed creature of night.

We do not think his simple declaration about strange liquids in his head should be dismissed as a childlike and preposterous notion. It is deadly.

 

Time to Cancel the Trump Show!

DATELINE:  Limited Series Ratings Down

Donald Trump once infamously said that he wanted each day of his presidency to be like a TV series episode. The Trump Show is not Another World, or even As the World Turns. It is stomach-turning overkill.

What fat old soap star failed to understand, among a million misunderstood points, is that even a soap opera is only on for five days per week, and it usually moves at a snail’s pace. The main characters may not appear every day. Trump violated his own comprehension of what his White House should be.

Even Dallas or Dynasty was on only for twenty weeks of the year—and then took a hiatus. It built toward a stunning climax. It did not try to create a climax each day. That is bad plotting, as Casca and Cassius might tell Brutus.

It certainly is what any decent soap writer would tell the notorious bed bug hotelier.

Trump’s show has no co-stars and no one receives a good bit of dialogue. Woe to them who ad lib, because they will find themselves out of the series post haste. Just ask Mattis, Scaramucci, Spicer, and Sessions. 

If the villain wins in an episode, Trump must put on a superhero outfit and damn the Kryptonite of collusion.

Even the good wife (or wives as it were) must be a Stepford robot, unable to speak out that she never met people he says she adores. And, most of the women are like J.R. Ewing castoffs: blondes who don’t cut it more than a guest episode or two.

You might yearn for the episode that asks who shot J.R.? You won’t find it in the Trump teleplay. He’s the one who can go out on Fifth Avenue and shoot someone (likely a black Baltimorian) and get away with murder.

He can lock up children like Richard III and not ask for a horse to help him get away. 

We do expect the forces of the empire to all turn against him in the final page of this bad show—much like they did to Laurence Olivier when he played that Son of York: chopped liver would be too good for Trump.

Night Tide & Mermaid

DATELINE: Dennis Hopper Fantasy

How wrong could a movie genre be? Try Night Tide,a strange little low-budget movie from 1963. It stars Dennis Hopper as a sailor who meets a sideshow freak star Mora, the mermaid. The question is whether this creature is like a werewolf—she turns back from a lovely woman to a part-time fish with the full moon.

Now, this hardly qualifies as a horror movie unless you are slightly off-kilter to begin. It does qualify as a movie direction for Dennis Hopper that is off-the-beaten path of Hollywood mainstream.

For all his traditional looks, Hopper was a true rebel to the system, and his selection of $25,000 budget movies indicated his went against all Hollywood norms in the early 1960s. It likely spoke volumes about where his buddy James Dean would have gone, had he lived.

Yet, it now seems like a marvelous jazzy film noir choice, daring and delightful. Mora (Linda Lawson) lives over a merry-go-round and special effects are more suggested than actual. She is hooked into some middle-aged harridan who may be queen of the gypsies, Madame Romanovitch (Marjorie Eaton).

Hopper was absolutely stunning in his little sailor outfit, out on shore leave—by himself. That, in itself, is an odd plot twist. The seaside arcade he visits and quite cosmopolitan beatnik bar are a scream. We love the patrons with dark glasses at night inside a bistro while a jazz quartet plays David (Laura) Raksin’s film score.

We almost expected him to walk into a gay bar of the 1950s, but that would mean mermen, not mermaids.

Curtis Harrington wrote and directed this small masterpiece, which channels Edgar Allan Poe with a twist.

 

 

 

Quantum Physics & Paranormal

DATELINE: Orbs of Travel

One of the post-séance images in the library. A white smudge, quite large, likely a sphere with a diameter of several feet sat atop a cushion on the bench next to the chess table.

 

If there is any new scientific breakthroughs, it is in the field of quantum physics that have direct bearing on the issues of ghosts, orbs, divining rods, and electro-magnetic energy of light.

What is happening in this field may revolutionize the superstitious concepts around the idea that people who have died are in another dimension—or some kind of creature that represents them are.

Quantum physics may be about to take the para out of paranormal and remove the super from supernatural. Already the concept of a séance has been called “remote viewing,” and may also be regulated by laws of relativity only hinted at by visionary scientists like Einstein.

Government and private groups studying “remote viewing” have already discerned that orbs seem to be devices that travel around dimensions of the universe, including crossovers from a parallel time and place. They have called the creatures or beings within orbs “Pp” or a designation abbreviation for para-people.

One basis for the science now proposed is a principle that is called quantum “entanglement.” This condition indicates that two particles can be linked—regardless of their position in the universe or out of it. This is a connection between two items that illustrates a change in one particle in the universe may be seen in another no matter how far away it stays or goes.

This entangled pair makes it possible to know a great deal about the unseen particle from the one that is visible and within observable universe. If it sounds like a medium and the connected spirit, there is surely more than metaphor at work.

As a result of this pairing, a quantum radar device may be able to see what is happening out of sight by watching the captive item. This will provide radar with new, richer, deeper information. In some ways, the notion of such radar can be seen in the parallel of a remote viewer watching an event in the distant past, or in the distance of geography.

This new quantum radar in development will focus on photons—electro-magnetic light energy. The result of this new process can reveal much more knowledge about the unseen than all other radars have provided.

In today’s radar process, the targets are blobs, masses, or ill-defined orbs. Quantum radar will be able to see altitudes, conditions, and even passengers, and other physical aspects in what is a featureless blob of energy. It can be applied to technological mysteries like UFOs, or even to supernatural mysteries like spirit orbs.

The purpose of quantum radar will be to identify signals and other electro-magnetic characteristics that emanate from the orb target.

If the science of sighting orbs is applied to quantum physics, will there be an admission that these are actual objects that can be studied as part of the laws of the universe?

In some ways, we have already proven today with sensitive infrared cameras and electronic audio devices that something is afoot in the universe, perhaps from another “fifth” dimension, not a fantasy of “sixth” sense.

Since studying this phenomenon, the author in his contact with orbs has become more convinced that conscious orbs are an actual and natural situation outside our limited and primitive explanations of the cosmos.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Every Act of Life: Terrence McNally

DATELINE: Surviving Show Business

 Terry McNally & Eddie Albee back when….

In all my connections to Broadway writers, Terrence McNally never came up much.

Now James Kirkwood would talk about everyone in show biz! We gossiped about them all. Yet, there is no memory of him mentioning McNally.

Oh, they knew of each other: gay writers winning friends in great theater. Kirkwood certainly knew Edward Albee who was McNally’s first important boyfriend, but McNally may have been too openly gay for Jim Kirkwood. It’s the only conclusion to make.

Every Act of Lifeis a documentary on the life of McNally who worked with every actor imaginable since the death of Jim Kirkwood in 1989, and that may be the survival of your reputation in show business. Richard Thomas, Nathan Lane, Rita Moreno, F. Murray Abraham, Angela Lansbury, all share memories of their careers and personal ties to McNally and his funny and varied plays.

All Jim’s closest actor friends, like Sal Mineo, are long gone. One young writer once said to me: “Wow, I didn’t think any of Kirkwood’s friends were still alive.”

McNally survived, though people like Robert Drivas, his tempestuous and exotic actor boyfriend after Albee, died of AIDS in 1985 in the first wave of notable show business deaths. Drivas was a closet case, and yet it was open and flamboyant McNally who still lives nearly forty years later.

There is no accounting for survival, but you have to admire it when it shows up at your door. The film on the life of McNally is likely a tonic and a fizz for gay people who need superior role models. If you die too soon, you can’t be much of a mentor. If Jim Kirkwood were here, I might say you should never have told me to write your autobiography and play coy about your gay life. Yet, he did.

McNally, had I known him, would never have said such a thing, but those plays and characters never quite grabbed like Jim Kirkwood’s creations.

Oh, it’s too late now to do much about it, but we can celebrate the life of Terrence McNally, albeit a tad on the late side.

 

Dr. William Russo wrote Riding James Kirkwood’s Pony, available in paperback and e-book on Amazon.