Who's the leader of the club that's made for you and me?
n today's excerpt - to help finance the construction of his new theme park, Walt Disney launched a new 1955 television show that revolutionized programming and dominated the daytime ratings with the unheard of strategy of letting regular kids be the stars of a show. For the kids that starred, the work was hard, and they survived in part with their own small subversions. For example, the pre-teen boys who starred in The Mickey Mouse Club defied the wishes of the show's producers and tilted their Mouseketeer caps back to show off their golden pompadours:
A guy could have the coolest hair in town, but no one would know about it if he wore his Mouseketeer cap according to regulation.
The guys had to have their waves out. And producers' demands that they wear the stupid hats way down on their heads wrecked everything. 'All the guys hated the ears,' Lonnie says now. 'They'd always want us to wear it like a monk.'
"The solution: the boys would act like they were going along with the producers' ridiculous rules until the last second before shooting started, then sneak the cap back two inches or so, just as cameras started to roll, pushing as much hair as possible forward with it to approximate a decent wave.
"More than ten million children watched the first season of The Mickey Mouse Club, and two million Mouse ears sold in the show's first three months,
The Mickey Mouse Club made a generation of kids feel like they belonged to their own elite group, a feeling that would lodge itself in their hearts and make them remember Mouseketeers Annette, Tommy, Darlene, Cubby, Karen, Lonnie, Sherry, Doreen, and the rest of the gang for the rest of their lives."
Author: Jennifer ArmstrongRead more at campaign.r20.constantcontact.com
Title: Why? Because We Still Like You
Publisher: Grand Central
Date: Copyright 2010 by Jennifer Armstrong