"THE GREAT AMERICAN TOURIST TRAP"
By way of contrast, "The Great American Tourist Trap" takes viewers to slightly more accessible sites: consider the Parrot Jungle, the Television Stars' Hall of Fame, go-karts and tantalizing souvenir stands. From purple mountains' majesty to stuffed pandas, wish you were here!
[ Courtesy: Pete Delaney - 09-18-2016 ]
After some quick clips from stock footage and 7 1971 first series episodes illustrate the toil of work, the picture brightens to a magnificent sunrise as we hear Judy Garland singing "Over The Rainbow." Then, donning his K-Mart Hawaiian shirt and funny straw hat, Jean Shepherd drives his car south to salute the American vacation.
It's a mainly a celebration of the non-Disney, non-Universal attractions of the Kissimmee I Orlando region of Florida. Jean is seen having a hell of a great time at worlds (Sea World, Shell World, Marache-Mohawk World), lands (Gatorland) and jungles (Parrott Jungle.)
He finds a small concrete prediction of the future in the geodesic Xanadu house complete With videotaped fireplaces.
Shep also visits the Six Flags TV / Movie Stars Hall Of Fame Wax Museum just in time before it dosed forever one week later. He also indulges in "one of the silliest things created on earth!", the game of golf.
Then, through new footage and a few recycled clips from the Jean Shepherd TV movie, "The Great American Fourth of July and Other Disasters" (1982), we are in Dillon, South Carolina's famed "South Of The Border" motel/ restaurant, where we discover that gift shop "slob art" of the 1980s is as tacky and worthless as the items we saw in Little America, Wyoming nearly 15 years earlier.
More recycling ends the show as we are treated to extended clips from the 1971 "Flying", "Maine", "Food" and "Hawaii" episodes.
Music played on the show:
"Maple Leaf Rag" Scott Joplin
"Old Mac Donald Had A Farm" Spike Jones
"Somewhere Over The Rainbow" Judy Garland
"If I Only Had A Brain" Ray Bolger
"Jaws" John Williams
"Puttin' On My Top Hat" Fred Astaire
"Theme From The Lawrence Welk Show" Lawrence Welk
"Star Trek 2, The Wrath Of Khan" Elmer Bernstein
"Why Do Fools Fall In Love" Frankie Lymon & The Teenagers
"There's No Business Like Show Business" Irving Berlin
"Raindrops Keep Falling on My Head" Burt Bachrach
"Ballet Mecanique" George Antheil
"Alley Cat" (?)
"Peace Three" Nonesuch Guide To Electronic Music
In the 1985 Press Kit Shep wrote a small piece
The Devil Has All the Best Lines
by Jean Shepherd
I'm not one for fantasies. In fact, I can't honestly say that l've ever consciously had one. As a kid, I never fantasized that I was Joe DiMaggio or Mickey Mantle or Humphrey Bogart. Sure I admired them. But fantasizing that I was them? Never.
But there are things that we all secretly would like to have done-or have been had time and circumstances allowed. I wonder how it would have felt to have been a knight during the reign of Richard The Lion-Hearted, or a buHalo hnnter on the Great Plains in the days of Cochise.
I've always seen television, at least my television, as a kind of magic wand. You can go places and do things that nobody in his right mind could ever pull off. For example, who among us has never wanted to visit Death Valley? Now there's a romantic name. Death Valley Soottyl The 20-mule team! .All of that. Well, why not go? And not just as a visitor, but as a participant.
So, in my new public television series, I played the role of a grizzled prospector struggling across the salt flats under the blazing sun, my only companion my faithful burro Flower. Who wouldn't like to do that? And what red-blooded male hasn't
always secretly wanted to turn a few laos at Indianapolis - the Brickyard- the home of the legendary 500? Why not? So seated in a magnificent million-dollar Dusenberg, in another of my new shows dressed in the costume of an early Indy
race driver, I raced against the heroic "Duke" Nalon, a real race driver of the Indy's glory days. What a gas!
How 'bout playing the Dev.il, with cape and sinister Palm Beach hat, visiting night time New Orleans for a little recreation and a field trip to see how sin is progressing on earth? We did, and 1 can tell you l began to feel that I was typecast as Satan by the end of the shoot. I loved it. As George Bernard Shaw said, "The Devil has all the best lines."
Fantasies? No. Television is magic, and I love it.