The Daily Post: Who is your greatest hero?

February 2, 2011

Daily Post

Today’s Daily Post topic: Who is your greatest hero?

If you are one one my rabid readers, friends or fans you know that my greatest hero is my grandfather, Glenn Wilson.

I am sure that other bloggers will have some great choices for their heroes: Their parents, a teacher, their kids, Jesus, Ghandi perhaps, heck maybe even P-BO.

But by far the hero that we all should look up to is:

The Greatest American Hero

The Greatest American Hero

The Greatest American Hero has to be the best TV show ever aired in the early 80s. I can remember being 10 years old the day the first episode came on and I was immediately hooked!

In the show: A pair of strangers, liberal high-school teacher Ralph Hinkley and right-wing FBI agent Bill Maxwell, have a close encounter in the Southern California desert one night with “little green men”, who give our heroes a red superhero suit. The suit works only for Ralph, and the two, accompanied by Ralph’s cute lawyer girlfriend Pam, reluctantly team up to battle criminals. Problems ensue when Ralph loses the suit’s instruction book, so he had to master the suit’s powers on his own.

Some cool trivia about The Greatest American Hero:

William Katt’s (who played the Greatest American Hero) first major movie roll was playing Tommy Ross in the greatest horror movie of all time: Carrie.

Stephen J. Cannell is the genius behind some of the greatest TV shows of all time: Hunter, The Commish, Renegade, Silk Stalkings, Riptide, Hardcastle and McCormick, and even 21 Jump Street.

The unsuccessful pilot for a spin-off series, “The Greatest American Heroine”, produced in 1986, screens as the final episode in syndication.

Although DC Comics tried to sue the producers for copying Superman, the show’s premise is closer to that of another DC Comics character, Green Lantern, who was given a power ring by an alien to become a superhero.

In March 2002, plans were reportedly underway at Disney to make a feature film of the TV series.

Ralph’s son Kevin was only seen occasionally during the first season and was phased out as the show went on.

William Katt’s real life mother, Barbara Hale, played Ralph’s mother Paula Hinkley in a few episodes.

Connie Sellecca was rarely seen during the second season due to her real-life pregnancy.

Bill was kidnapped a total of eight times and was shot five times. Pam was kidnapped six times.

According to Stephen J. Cannell, the emblem on the suit (and also on the clothing of the aliens) was inspired by the square-handled scissors on Cannell’s desk.

In the pilot when Ralph is taken to a mental hospital wearing his super outfit, a man tells him, “That’s a bad suit, Jim!” A similar line (“Say Jim, that’s a bad out-FIT!”) was said to Christopher Reeve in Superman.(1978) movie.

The series was parodied in an episode of  Robot Chicken (2005), “Yancy the Yo-Yo Boy”.

The shows theme song was sung by Joey Scarbury and released as a single, which peaked at #2 on the Billboard Charts during the summer of 1981.

Ralph’s surname was changed near the end of the first season from Hinkley to Hanley because of the name’s negative connection with John Hinkley (the man who shot President Ronald Reagan in an assassination attempt on March 30, 1981). Ralph’s last name was changed back to Hinkley in the first episode of Season 2 (“The Two Hundred Mile an Hour Fastball”), after the furor over his name subsided. Interestingly enough, the unaired 1986 “Greatest American Heroine” pilot includes a scene in which Ralph Hinkley meets the President of the United States (who was still Ronald Reagan in real-life 1986).

Who is your greatest hero?

Robert Forto | Team Ineka | Alaska Dog Works | Mushing Radio | Dog Works Radio | Denver Dog Works | Daily Post

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Robert Forto is a musher training for his first Iditarod under the Team Ineka banner and the host of the popular radio shows, Mush! You Huskies and Dog Works Radio Shows

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About robertforto

Robert Forto is the owner of Dog Works Training Company in Alaska, a canine behaviorist, mushin' down a dream, sports nut and radio show host. Robert writes a lot about his observations in Alaska, pop culture, music, and of course dogs!

View all posts by robertforto

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One Comment on “The Daily Post: Who is your greatest hero?”

  1. Michele Forto Says:

    thanx for the giggles today – I so remember that show!

    Reply

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