Saturday, January 28, 2006

Mabel-centrism

For those of you who may have forgotten my previous post, Marilyn Slater is the go-to person for all things Mabel Normand and her site, Looking For Mabel, is a wonderful testimony to the power of obsessiveness in the service of classic comedy research (it's also a reminder of how scattershot I am about classic comedy.. I envy her ability to stay focused). What I love about Marilyn's meticulous Mabel-centric research is how it leads, also, to a better understanding of Mabel's contemporaries and pre-War Hollywood as a whole. Her now regularly-updated Mabel Normand blog demonstrates that nicely as it has thus far covered the Keystone studio, Mabel's possible association with the Pasadena Rose Parade, the Aitken Brothers, and Mabel's good friend, fellow actress, and Roscoe Arbuckle's first wife Minta Durfee (Minta was still appearing in movies as late as 1971 and was represented by the Beverly Hecht Agency. Who knew?). I'm particularly fond of some of Mabel's strikingly sad poetry that Marilyn has uncovered. Be sure to check Marilyn's blog out frequenly as she has promised much, much more to come. Heck.. keep your eye on the whole darn site. You won't be disappointed.

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