1960’s Television Icons Robert Clary (87) and Robert Conrad (84) Celebrate Birthdays Today

For Robert Conrad in his prime, there was probably no such thing as a “bad hair day.” Here he is as 1880’s Secret Service Agent, James West, in a scene from an episode of his very popular ’60s TV show, “The Wild, Wild West.” Conrad turned 84 today. (Photo: CBS)

Robert Clary in a scene from TV's "Hogan's Heroes." Clary turned 87 today. (Photo: CBS)

Robert Clary in a scene from TV’s “Hogan’s Heroes.” Clary turned 87 today. (Photo: CBS)

Two Talented Men—Same Birthday!

When I was a kid growing up in the 1960s, television was one of my favorite windows into the adventures and historical heroes of yesteryear. Sure, I enjoyed books, comics, and movies as much as anyone else, but Saturday morning cartoons and nightly adventure programs on TV were more my thing.

Coincidentally, two of the stars of two of my favorite shows both celebrate their birthdays today. First, Robert Conrad, of CBS’ “Wild, Wild West” (WWW) and then later, NBC’s “Baa Baa Blacksheep” (BBB), turns 84 today. Likewise, Robert Clary, the last living “hero” from CBS’ “Hogan’s Heroes,” turns a healthy and robust 87 years young today.

Robert Conrad in a publicity still from NBC's "Baa-Baa-Blacksheep." (Photo: NBC)

Robert Conrad portrayed WW2 hero, Pappy Boyington, in NBC’s “Baa Baa Blacksheep.” (Photo: NBC)

Conrad is still very much in the public eye and has his own weekly talk-radio show over on CRN found HERE. Clary is now fully retired and enjoys spending his days with his family; singing, and painting. He has a very basic website which still sells his recordings and original artwork HERE.

Hogan, Schultz and Klink have all been made into 1:6 scale action figures. Can James West and Louie Le Beau be far behind? (Photo: Sideshow Toys) Click to enlarge.

Hogan, Schultz and Klink have all been made into 1:6 scale action figures. Can James West and Louie Le Beau be far behind? (Photo: Sideshow Toys) Click to enlarge.

Both stars also have many connections to things that interest collectors and fans of 1:6 scale, including WWII, the American West, action figures and of course, nostalgic “classic television.” Conrad’s WWW show even featured a customized GIjOE as a stand-in for one scene, playing a miniature version of James West on a chess board (see photo below). To date, Clary has not been made into an “official” action figure, but customs are sure to exist SOMEWHERE (Hello, Wayne Faucher? Rick Ratto?). Interestingly, the three “primaries” of Hogan’s Heroes (Hogan, Schultz and Klink) were immortalized by Sideshow Toys back in 2006. Perhaps a second set featuring Le Beau, Kinch, Carter and Newkirk will be forthcoming soon (keeping our fingers crossed).

Bottom Line: The staff of The Joe Report would like to take a moment today to send out a big, “HAPPY BIRTHDAY!” to both of these talented performers. Thank you for so many years of innocent, fun-filled adventure, comedy and musical entertainment!

GIjOE stood in for Robert Conrad in this scene from The Wild, Wild West when an actor of 1:6 scale was required. (Photo: CBS)

In this scene from “The Wild, Wild West,” GIjOE was cast as the perfect stand-in for Robert Conrad when an actor of 1:6 scale was required. The beautiful actress seems to be thoroughly enjoying stroking Joe’s noggin’ (the first, EVER “Fuzzhead”), and Joe doesn’t appear to be complaining too much. Also note the superb custom costume created by the studio’s prop department. Incredible! (Photo: CBS)

Robert Clary and Cynthia Lynn clown around in this publicity still from CBS' "Hogan's Heroes. (Photo: CBS)

Robert Clary and Cynthia Lynn clown around for a publicity still taken on the set of CBS’ irreverent and satirical ’60s sitcom,“Hogan’s Heroes.” (Photo: CBS)

Advertisements

3 thoughts on “1960’s Television Icons Robert Clary (87) and Robert Conrad (84) Celebrate Birthdays Today

  1. Wayne Faucher says:

    Boy, I’ll tell ya what; a James West figure might be pretty cool. His costumes were always very sharp.

  2. If you could create a working version of the slide-out sleeve derringer, you’d be SMOKIN’!!!!!!

  3. kneonknight says:

    I would imagine you could rig a spring-loaded device for the derringer. Gravity wouldn’t work, I don’t think, because even if you cast the pistol out of solid lead, it probably wouldn’t have enough weight to overcome the friction of the sleeve.

    Now I’m wondering if that “Joe West” figure is hiding away in some studio warehouse or if it got into the hands of a lucky collector. That would be an awesome piece to own, or to put into a G.I. Joe museum display.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: