Thursday, January 15, 2009

Ricardo Montalban

January 15, 2009

Yesterday, for some reason I was thinking of the old Howard Stern tape they'd play of a prankster calling George Takei, pretending to be Ricardo Montalban. Takei is congenial until the caller says something obvious inflammatory, then says, "You know, I don't think this is Ricardo Montalban," and hangs up. Lots of laughs.

And just this morning in the show, for some reason I was remembering the signing at Hollywood's Virgin Megastore where Tenacious D showed up and played a couple of songs. I wondered if that was the first signing I went to, or if it was the one where I met Ricardo Montalban, the world's greatest Mexican. Wistfully, I remembered my sad attempt to speak Spanish with him (and how he complimented me on my effort), and that it was the first time I got a DVD autographed.So, it was a combination of saddening and intriguing that, two minutes ago, I discovered that SeƱor Montalban passed away yesterday. Natural causes, they say. He was 88.Dude, I absolutely love Ricardo Montalban. "Fantasy Island" was one of my favourite shows as a child, and I still remember fondly one episode that gave me nightmares. Plus, Mister Rourke was one of the first impressions (along with Tattoo) that I would do, while still in elementary school.

And don't get me started on WRATH OF KHAN. Holy monkey, I love every frame of STAR TREK II (even deleted frames). And Montalban is a big part of that. His larger than life character was a combination of gentleman and monster unequalled in any of the "Trek" films, and his death scene is as great as any I can think of.*A few years ago, a man broke into my apartment and stole my DVD collection. I had so many that he had to fill up shopping bags with them, carry them out to his car or apartment, then return for more. For whatever reason, he didn't finish the job, leaving the bags and my DVDs from the S's on. It's with pride that I still have my signed WRATH OF KHAN, and scan it here.I hope Montalban knew, in the end, how cool he was.

Smiles, everyone, smiles.

Rish "Ricardo" Outfield

*Maybe not as good as Boromir's, but probably better than Darth Vader's.

1 comment:

Afton said...

Was it the Werewolf episode?? That one freaked me out.