This Week in the Mercury


Tuesday, July 3, 2012

R.I.P. Andy Griffith: The Cunning Hillbilly

Posted by Wm.™ Steven Humphrey on Tue, Jul 3, 2012 at 10:14 AM

As Sarah mentioned in GMN, comedian/actor Andy Griffith—he of The Andy Griffith Show and Matlock—passed away this morning at the age of 86. While many remember him for the previously mentioned shows, he was also a very good actor (check him out in this trailer for 1957's A Face in the Crowd) and stand up comedian—though he made his mark on TV by practically pioneering the "cunning hillbilly" genre, in which a country bumpkin isn't as bumpkin-ish as some city slickers would like to believe. Check out his very first appearance as Mayberry's Sheriff Andy Taylor from this 1960 episode of Make Room for Daddy starring the also great Danny Thomas. Taylor is pretty different from the gentle, patient character he'd later become—here he's kind of hilariously evil. Action starts about 45 seconds in.

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