Saturday, July 7, 2012


When television came along, the movie studios felt threatened at first. Eventually, of course, several of the studios more or less got involved in TV production, and all of the major US TV networks have been owned by conglomerates that have movie studios at one point or another. Before all that, however, one of the things MGM did to try to cohabitate with television was producing a fairly bland clip show called MGM Parade, which packaged clips from classic movies, repackaged shorts, and contained thinly-veiled advertising for upcoming movies. TCM shows these MGM Parade shows from time to time whenever they have a spare half-hour to fill in their schedule; the next such half-hour comes up at 5:30 AM tomorrow morning.

The only reason I'm mentioning it is that it aired earlier in the week and I happened to come in somewhere in the middle, which was a Pete Smith short on a circus family that does rather interesting tricks with horses, although I feel kind of bad for the poor horses. The family was having four or five guys jump up on one horse while it was running around the ring, or guys doing somersaults through a hoop and landing back on the horse. Smith had a voluminous list of credits, and looking through that list, I can't tell which short this is from. IMDb's episode guide claims this particular episode includes the short Miracle of Salt Lake, but the short I saw clearly wasn't that. If you can take Smith's voice, the short is another of his many interesting time capsules.

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