Photoset from a 3/5/2006 Captain Ben reunion!
One of the first things I read was one of your first inquiries from Rick Green (in Guestbook 1) about the early 60's show about "a captain, a side kick and a girl crew member". The date of the inquiry was February 1999, and since that time no one has responded, not even those who were directly involved and who still are in the Tulsa area. (Perhaps that speaks volumes).
Of course, everyone knows that Phil is still in Tulsa and is still involved in the industry as a talented free lancer. Unfortunately, I have no idea of where Linda is now.
I suspect the reason memories of the show are so faint is that the show was not on the air that long. Just try and go up against King Lionel in Tulsa at that time and see what happens to you in the ratings. Big Bill was tough also. Perhaps the show should be known best as launching the acting career of Wayne Johnson whose talent blossomed later in the role of Tuffy. On Captain Ben, Wayne was the "evil villain" whose plans for the destruction of the world, (or at least the ruining of the balance of nature), formed the "adventure" segment of the show. Perhaps, it was the conversion of this evil and ugly personality into the gentle, lovable and fluffy character you know as Tuffy that left the Lookout Mountain crew with no worlds to conquer, so it left the air. The world was at last safe.
Since the adoption of the Telecommunications Act of 1992, when a great deal of regulatory authority over cable television was placed with local governments, the majority of my practice has involved representation of municipalities in negotiating cable televison franchise matters, including renewals. I am also currently involved in the transfer of a television station in the Oklahoma City market. So, I am back where I started... almost.
I think Tuffy summed up our feelings about Captain Ben during my last visit with him at the station when he exclaimed, "We had fun".
It was fun.... and I am happy that Rick remembered.
When I was very small, like four years old...this would be about 1962...KTUL ran a serial type flying show that I believe was produced at KTUL studios on Lookout Mountain. Two guys, their secretary that got kidnapped once, ran a flying service with a fake plane that was always stalling and crashing, once in the jungle with some very scary natives. One native took a flying service patch and was going to sew it directly onto his skin (the pilot had theirs on leather jackets)
What was the name of this show? My photographic memory fails me after more than 40 years, as I could not read yet, but I believe the logo patch even had the number 8 on it, and the star was one of your regular announcers on KTUL.
I told Jim that the show was undoubtedly "Captain Ben" and forwarded his note to the Captain (aka Bob Jernigan). Bob replied:
I asked if that "Bozo" wasn't Doug Montgomery. Bob responded:
Jim came back:
On reading the Captain Ben page, it must have been Wayne Johnson that kidnapped Clancy and scared me so badly that I had to turn off the TV! I am sure she was rescued, but the camera was at his back, as I recall, and a wreath of cigarette smoke really made him just too sinister for me, at age four, to watch one second longer. To think that this was the guy that I loved so much as Tuffy on the Mr. Zing show later on is really an eye-opener!
I would enjoy hearing from both Wayne and Bob should they care to email their most loyal fan of 43 years.
I did forward the note to Bob. Tuffy retired to his ranch out west of Tulsa.