Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Let's hear it for GREGG PALMER!

Gregg Palmer, who previously went under his real name of Palmer Lee, toiled as a Universal-International contract player alongside the likes of Rock Hudson, Tony Curtis and Jeff Chandler. Yet unlike those three good-looking gents, Gregg never became a star. In fact, you could even say that once he allowed himself to go to seed a bit, he became much more employable than in his male starlet days. Mostly as a supporting player in TV Westerns and as a member of the unofficial John Wayne stick company. And as such, his carreer lasted into the 1980s. 

I recently came across Gregg Palmer as the cavalry officer befriending Rock Hudson's Taza, Son of Cochise (1954) in the Western of that name, one of those throwaway Universal potboilers that usually promise more than they deliver. But this one held my interest mainly because of Mr. Palmer, who actually managed to upstage a loin clothed Rock Hudson. There was something of the young Clark Gable in the young Gregg Palmer that the studio obviously missed. Too bad because Gregg could actually act and was as handsome as any in them thar Universal hills. As far as can be determined. Gregg Palmer still lives in his little bungalow in Encino, CA, enjoying his retirement at the age of 86.    

A little aside: according to the usual online sources, Palmer Lee was Gregg's birth name. Really? For some reasons, I doubt that the son of Norwegian immigrants would be named Palmer Lee. But maybe that's just me.


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