Thursday, November 5, 2015


Marty at the dance

1955 was the year that James Dean got killed and Albert Einstein passed away. It’s the year Marty McFly travelled to in BTTF. It was also the year that one of my favourite actors won his Oscar, funnily enough, for a movie called ‘Marty’, where he played the title role.

Socially awkward McFly

He was always instantly recognisable, though you may have gotten his name wrong. The films he graced included such gems as The Flight of the Phoenix, The Dirty Dozen, Ice Station Zebra, The Poseidon Adventure, The Black Hole, and Escape from New York.

Escape from New York

He enjoyed many years on our TV screens playing character actors in programmes like Little House on the Prairie, The Love Boat, Highway to Heaven, Airwolf, Murder She Wrote, and Touched by an Angel. More recently he voiced the popular children’s’ cartoon character ‘Mermaid Man’ in SpongeBob SquarePants.

I am talking, of course, about Ermes (Hermes) Effron ( bird ) Borgnino (one eye) aka Ernest Borgnine.

Ermes Messenger of the Gods

If you haven’t already noticed, his filmography, as well as his personal life, seem to have wonderful synchronistic overtones for sci-fi fans, movie freaks, and lovers of strange coincidences.

The Cyclops (one-eyed Seer)

Among his many roles, he has links to the navy, ships, and the sea in general. Something he used to his advantage in one of his first TV outings playing the loveable Lieutenant Commander Quinton McHale in 62s ‘McHale’s Navy’, a sit-com for Universal.

Marty at the dance

He narrated the TV fantasy film ‘Merlin’s Shop of Mystical Wonders’, which later became part of the ‘Mystery Science Theatre’.

Hell Upside Down!

According to online sources, in 2000, Borgnine received his 50-year pin as a Freemason in Abingdon Lodge No. 48, Abingdon, Virginia. He joined the Scottish Rite Valley of Los Angeles (in the Southern Jurisdiction of the U.S.A) in 1964, received the KCCH in 1979, was coroneted a 33° Inspector General Honorary in 1983, and received the Grand Cross of the Court of Honour in 1991. He was also a member of the Loyal Order of Moose at that organization's Lodge in Junction City, Oregon.

Life preserver?
Borgnine held the honour of being the oldest living Best Actor Oscar winner around, beating James Dean for the gong. Living to the ripe old age of 95, he even managed to win an Emmy for his role in the last episodes of ER.

Marty in New York City

In the role of Marty, Borgnine plays a butcher who lives in The Bronx with his mother. Unmarried at 34, he’s good-natured but socially awkward, and faces constant badgering from family and friends. Not averse to marriage but disheartened by his lack of prospects, Marty has reluctantly resigned himself to bachelorhood.

After being harassed by his mother into going to the Stardust Ballroom one Saturday night, Marty connects with Clara, a plain schoolteacher, who is quietly weeping on the roof after being callously abandoned at the ballroom by her blind date.

Clara the plain schoolteacher!


Brizdaz (Darren) said...

Brilliant stuff.
I've never even heard of this Marty film before reading this.
But, i have now.
How deep does this BTTF rabbit hole go?

... said...

Yep, I remember this movie although I never realised it was actually called 'Marty'. How amazing is this coincidence. The more you look at 1955 as a whole, the more you see. I am so convinced about the 9/11 mega ritual each time I read about yet another connection to the movie.

A couple of nights ago, in the UK, there was a comedy show which had as a guest Philippe Petit, the real high-wire artist of Man on a Wire. He was brilliantly funny, and the original film clips of him with flared trousers crossing the wire between the towers just was great to watch... Also intriguing... as you notice he isn't wearing the leather jacket and red top in the clips as he is in the dramatised film.