I don’t care if my age is showing when I do these articles. I grew up with television; we were both toddlers and grew into our teens and old age together, and believe me; we have both come a long way! If you have similar memories about anything, then we are a part of living history and should be glad to share this first hand information before they are lost forever. When I was little we had fun and carefree programs about the difficult situations we could all get into and the non-earth shattering consequences. None of these were critical, but the innocence of youth is something that today’s television has taken away. Hope I can bring you back to the good old days and for those who were not around back then; an appreciation of days gone by.
Back when the comic strips were something we looked forward to seeing in our newspapers; we followed the adventures of caricatures like they were our friends. We loved the Bumsteads; Dagwood, Blondie and their daughter Cookie and son Alexander. Dagwood, the typical bumbling dad was famous for making sandwiches of weird concoctions and worked for a grouchy boss named Mr. Dithers. Blondie was a housewife and mother. When Dagwood would come home, he would announce his arrival as he opened the door to give Blondie enough time to make it to the kitchen before the door slammed and her salt and pepper shakers mounted on the wall would fall off into her waiting hands. Looking back, this seems to be the only thing I truly remember that stayed in my mind about this show that only lasted one season from January to July of 1957. The comic strip and comic books of the Bumsteads were what truly hooked me on this old show.
The cast included:
Pamela Britton …………. Blondie Bumstead
Arthur Lake ……………. Dagwood Bumstead
Florenz Ames …………… J.C. Dithers
Stuffy Singer ………….. Alexander
Ann Barnes …………….. Cookie
Pamela Britton who played Blondie on this series was a film actress who played with several leading men like Frank Sinatra, Clark Gable and Edmond O’Brien. Although several actresses played Blondie, on radio and movies, she was the one who played Blondie on this television series. She became a bit more famous later on by playing the nosy landlady Loralee Brown in “My Favorite Martian.” She died of a brain tumor at 51 years of age in 1974.
Arthur Lake was born into a circus family and appeared in vaudeville and then early motion pictures. He starred in the long running Blondie radio series and then in the television program of the same name and a few movies of the Blondie series. Arthur Lake earned a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame and was a good friend of newspaper tycoon William Randolph Hearst. He married his wife Patricia, who he met at San Simeon, the Hearst mansion and national landmark. It was believed that his wife was the daughter of Hearst and his mistress Marion Davies. Lake died of a heart attack at the age of 81 in 1987.