TV Cream

Hall of Fame

LAUREL, Stan

laurelEasily forgotten (by Americans, at least) that he was an Ulverston lad, but the heavy reliance that Hollywood film comedy had on the British music hall thanks to ex-pats like Stan and Chaplin means we can regard the man’s multifarious triumphs as British through and through, Hal Roach or no Hal Roach. Ever as humble as he was dedicated, he came up with set-pieces and bits of business for loads of their classics, without an on-screen credit. Anyway, do we have to rehearse the glue-brush-in-face, piano-down-stairs, fresh-fish-hooting brilliance of the man? He was quite simply comedy personified, from soup to hardboiled eggs and nuts.

FINEST HOUR: It’s neither original, nor especially big or clever, but just look at that soft shoe shuffle in Way Out West. Just look at it!

4 Comments

4 Comments

  1. Glenn Aylett

    May 16, 2021 at 3:57 pm

    He also lived in North Shields, where I was born, and the town has a statue of him in Dockwray Square, where he lived as a boy, and has an old people’s home named after him. Stan joins Ridley Scott, Michael Rodd and Neil Tennant in the list of famous people who lived in the town before they were famous.

  2. Sidney Balmoral James

    May 16, 2021 at 10:51 pm

    There is also a statue in Bishop Auckland, where he was christened (plus one with Olly in Ulverston his birthplace). There has been something of a resurgence in statues of entertainers in recent year but it’s a shame that they are mostly so unimaginative – the Hancock one is particularly poor. The one of Ken Dodd at Lime Street Station, meeting Bessie Braddock however is an excellent concept. The one of Tommy Cooper is terrifying. Now what about a statue of Larry Grayson in Nuneaton?

    • THX 1139

      May 16, 2021 at 11:59 pm

      I’m sure I heard Larry refused the offer of a statue, so that’s why there’s never been one there.

  3. Richardpd

    May 16, 2021 at 10:57 pm

    I heard Laurel & Hardy performed in the North East when on live tours.

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