I found out this morning that Sir Norman Wisdom, OBE, died on the Isle of Man on October 4th, 2010. Through clips on YouTube I have only too lately become familiar with the works of Norman Wisdom. A British stage, screen and TV actor his career spanned many decades on the other side of the Atlantic mostly unnoticed by the American audiences. He was a veteran of WW2 having served in a communications bunker working for the British High command after serving the first part of his career as an Army musician in India. His affable disposition and friendly demeanor made him a favorite of all of his audiences. He was nominated for a Tony Award for a Broadway production in 1966. However, it was his portrayal of the common man Norman Pitkin over many films that gained him fame and admiration, even from the likes of Charlie Chaplin.
His Wikipedia biography can be found here.
Norman did a few films centered around his characters reluctant and nonchalant service in the British Military. It is for these roles that I know of his work from YouTube. His was truly a comic masterminds skill and I am sorry that I never got to enjoy his work in its prime. joy the
Enjoy the following few clips from “The Square Peg”, the one with the bayonet is especially funny to me.
…and the Royal Navy wasn’t immune from his attention either!