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Thursday, September 10, 2015
Martin Milner - Requiescat in Pace
Martin Milner's recent passing brought social media tributes perhaps more from Baby Boomers in whose collective memory is cherished two particular television shows: Route 66 and Adam-12. He also appeared in quite a number of guest spots on different series and TV movies, and I always looked forward to seeing him as one of my favorites.
I think it was when we covered the episode from Murder She Wrote in the Ann Blyth series last year: Murder She Wrote: "Reflections of the Mind" and the comments left by readers who shared a love of Mr. Milner's work that I became aware of the mini-cult surrounding this fine actor. His charm, I suppose, was his constancy, we could count on the excellence of his work and the feeling in his non-showy way, we could depend on his character. He didn't have to be a hero, he was just a guy and we were glad to know him.
It is especially interesting to recall that this actor began at the tail end of Hollywood's great era, when he played one of the boys in Life With Father (1947) covered here in a previous post, and in the wonderful I Want You (1951). We also saw him in Our Very Own (1950). He could play goofy, earnest, innocent types. He could play strong and virile romantics. He could play just a guy we knew and really liked. He did it effortlessly and without a lot of show.
And at just the mention of his name, some of us cannot help but be reminded of our childhoods.
Rest in peace.