Tuesday, May 08, 2007

Whatever Happened To...The Bear

For two years, from 1979 through the Spring of 1981, The Bear rode around the country in a semi-truck; fighting crime and getting into misadventure with his human sidekick, BJ.

The Bear was new to show biz and struggled with the pressure. Sitting in a big red rig each week was hard for a chimpanzee that is bipedal only on a part-time basis. There's very little space in the cab of the rig, at least not the kind of space that a chimp needs to just cut loose. And The Bear had some serious crushes on the women who worked for his wing man BJ during the second season. The ladies were beautiful, in a 70s sitcom sorta way, but they paid almost no attention to The Bear.

It was a stressful existence for The Bear. Every day--every hour--became painful and overwhelming.

One day, after a particularly difficult day of filming, The Bear had enough. He cozied up to the left leg of one of the female guest stars--legend says it was Judy Landers, but that isn't confirmed--and brushed his hand softly against the back of her knee.

She kicked him, and The Bear fought back hard.

And dirty.

Almost by instinct, The Bear pooped in his diaper, reached in and grabbed a handful. He knew as soon as he flung it his career was over. The big salary? Gone. The lavish Hollywood lifestyle? Over. The occasional conjugal visit at the San Diego Zoo? Forget about it.

His aim was true: Splat.

The Bear was given a quick sedative, then transported later in the evening to the office of a Beverly Hills veterinarian known to not ask questions.

He was never seen again.


primalscreamx said...

I found out where you can find 'The bear'. The family probably wants typewriters in lieu of flowers.


Jackie Lantern said...

I loved me some "BJ and the Bear". The stupid theme song goes through my head at least once a week!
Hell, come to think of it I even loved "Sheriff Lobo"....

Thanks for posting this!

The Film Geek said...

Bill: That is a great site, thanks. I dunno how their version is so dramatically different than mine...

Jackie: I liked Lobo too! Go figure.

Tim said...

It doesn't get much better than the tale of a man and his monkey...what a great show...too bad we didn't get to see more of Honey (played by Angela Aames)...what a babe!

The Goddezzz Fontezzz said...

That exact same thing happened to a guy I once dated... Perhaps he was related to the bear.

Anonymous said...

Not true at all. Where did this guy his "Crappy" information. Oh! That's right, if it's on the net it must be true. Here is a posting of the son who's dad owned and trained "Sam" the chimps real name at this link.

Mk Jones said...

Sam was kept at the Wildlife Animal Way Station in Angeles Forest north of Los Angeles. He died due to kidney failure. He was owned by Marvin Downey, and was a very big part of their family.