Goodbye Big Guy

kieljaws

I’ve reached the age where I’m getting used to talking about most of my heroes in the past tense, but it doesn’t make it any less sad. A couple of days ago the world lost yet another of my favorite character actors, Richard Kiel. He’s still best remembered as “Jaws” in the Roger Moore era James Bond films, but only looking back now did I realize what a huge part he played in the movies and television of my childhood and youth…

kielkanamit

He was Kanamit in the To Serve Man episode of the Twilight Zone

kielsolarite

He was the bizarre, grotesquely cute and sad solarite in Phantom Planet

He was Voltaire on Wild Wild West…He fought Clint Eastwood in Pale Rider…and he was the inquisitive, lovelorn caveman Eegah. The list goes on and on. And he had a pretty long career for someone with acromegaly…they rarely live past middle age. Ted “Lurch” Cassidy only made it to 46. Kiel lived to his 70’s. The guy was over 7 feet tall and he could be intimidating as hell, but he was also funny and quite likable, even when playing monsters, which he was admittedly typcast as. You could tell that he loved what he did though, which is one of the things that makes watching him work a blast and a half…

kieleegah

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2 comments

  1. mlbradford · September 19, 2014

    What a great star – shame there aren’t many tribute blogs out there
    You might like to see this:
    http://bradscribe.wordpress.com/2014/09/15/towering-influence/
    Cheers!

    • jayghastly · September 20, 2014

      It’s cool to see that others still remember Kiel as fondly as I do…

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