We like to keep the actual bad news to a minimum around these parts of the interwebs, and it sucks to come back from a wonderful Andre Johnson uppercut of a four-day weekend with a sad story, but we can’t control the news… yet. Actor Leslie Nielsen passed away yesterday at 84 of complications from pneumonia. While this may seem like news more suited for part-time bullfighting enthusiast Vince and FilmDrunk, we wanted to pay respect to Nielsen’s contributions to the sports world as well.
Despite his roles in terrible spoofs like 2001: A Space Travesty, Superhero Movie, and two of the Scary Movie sequels, sadly among many others, Nielsen will thankfully always be Lt. Frank Drebin, Police Squad. Growing up, Naked Gun and Airplane! had huge impacts on my sense of humor, as I’m sure they did for the majority of people in our generation. The Naked Gun franchise gave us OJ Simpson, Reggie Jackson trying to kill the Queen of England, and Priscilla Presley’s stuffed beaver. Most of all, Nielsen gave us a terrible umpire, the best worst National Anthem of all-time, and the most reusable comedy quotes before Anchorman was even a drop from Will Ferrell’s pen. And I can’t wait for Spring Training to go to a game and yell, “Hey! It’s Enrico Palazzo!” one more time.
In the meantime, we can remember his contributions to sports comedy…
(Not a Nielsen clip, but it’s his movie so it counts.)
(Not sports-related, but the “Hill of beans” speech and the USC marching band death aren’t on YouTube so I gots to do what I gots to do.)
(I know that this clip doesn’t have anything to do with Nielsen, but it’s his movie and this is my post, so Kareem Abdul-Jabbar makes the cut.)
- Geek & Sci-Fi