Sunday, October 10, 2010

Universal Studios, 1970-ish

Happy 10/10/10! I have no doubt that today will be extremely lucky for all of you.

Sorry about the lateness of today's post, I accidentally had it set to publish at 6 o'clock tonight! Duh.

Anyway, today we'll look at a few vintage photos of Universal Studios. Back in 1970, there was really no place like it. I loved my visits, particularly if Frankenstein's monster was around for a photo op. Where are the pictures of me with the monster? Who knows. Anyway, one of the many props guests could pose with is this neato jet fighter. You can see it in a detail from a panorama of about the same era. In the background, a circus wagon... climb in it and pretend to be a captive, man-eating gorilla that escapes and strangles people.

That poor, poor baby. Just moments after this photo was shot, he was crushed to jelly beneath those heavy rocks.

And how about another panorama? Nothing extraordinary here, but it does give you a sense of the place, and how it sprawled over several levels of hilly terrain - terrain that could pass for locations all over the globe.


Connie Moreno said...

I remember very well my 8th grade class trip to Universal. I had the entire class on the lookout for Robert Wagner, LOL!

Major Pepperidge said...

Connie, it's funny you should say that... Robert Wagner is prominently featured in a guide book from about that time!

Chuck said...

I have a slide of me at Universal taken the following year holding one of those giant boulders. I'd always wondered about the blood stains on the rock; now I know.

That was a trip that expanded my horizons and changed my life forever. I saw giant sequoias, towering waterfalls, a Mexican town get flash flooded, the set from "Ironside," and some place with a pink castle, a train, a riverboat, and talking birds. I was two and a half, and I've never been the same since.

Chuck said...

Forgot one comment.

The plane on display isn't actually a fighter, although it's based on one. The T-33 was a two-place trainer based on the P-80 (later F-80), the Air Force's first successful jet fighter. My father did his advanced pilot training in one of those beautiful, silver machines.

It's still neato cool, and I thank you for sharing.

TokyoMagic! said...

I'm trying to figure something out. Are those "dummy" heads in the cockpit, or are those just helmets mounted to the seats for a photo op? I guess if it was a photo op, that guy probably would have gone up there. But still, I can't make out any heads or faces inside of those helmets. Hmmmm.

Thufer said...

WOW, I remember this stuff. Those 'rocks' were a lot of fun. That whole pull off/out area was so cool. Lots of stuff there to check out.

Chiana_Chat said...

Of course, posing by the cool jet would've looked even better if there wasn't a Circus wagon parked right beside it! ;)

Nancy said...

i remember really enjoying our visit there in 2001, esp the backlot tour. seeing the Bates Motel was SOOOO cool! ;D

Anonymous said...

In the aerial shot, the green area behind is the Toluca Lake golf course.

My Dad wanted to caddy there when a small boy, Grand-Dad wouldn't let him and they moved to Colorado instead.

Dad would stand up there and wave him arms out at that landscape saying how he remembered all that city as orchards and farms.

I'm almost old enough to do the same in another place.


Anonymous said...

the jet is not a fighter, it's a boeing b-37 tactical nuclear bomber. This prop is from the movie Stragic Air Comand, staring Jimmy Stewart.

Major Pepperidge said...

Anon, I remember the gigantic B-36 from "Strategic Air Command", but not this much smaller aircraft. Is it really a bomber? It seems so small. Granted it has been years since I saw the Jimmy Stewart movie, but you sound like you know what you are talking about!