Lively, entertaining reviews of, and essays on, old and newer films and everything relating to them, written by professional author William Schoell.

Thursday, November 10, 2011


I AIN'T DOWN YET: THE AUTOBIOGRAPHY OF MY LITTLE MARGIE. Gale Storm with Bill Libby. Bobbs-Merrill; 1981.

Gale Storm appeared in some musicals and other movies for Monogram and other studios before finding lasting fame on two hit TV series, My Little Margie and Oh Susanna!. A big problem with this book is that it's less of a performing arts autobiography than it is an inspirational tome about alcoholism. Storm can't figure out why she began drinking [the fact that it got serious when she switched from hit TV shows to dinner theater may have had something to do with it] but she was in serious denial over her problem even when her liver expanded to "three to four times its regular size." The book has a few pages on show business and the people Storm worked with, and many, many more pages that read as a testimonial for an alcoholism clinic that Storm credits with saving her life and for which she eventually became a paid consultant. This book may have some value for people with drinking problems, but if you're expecting something that tears the lid off TV and tinsel town, look elsewhere. Storm doesn't even have that much to say about her co-stars. Sections are written by her husband, four children, and even the head of the aforementioned clinic. Storm's religiosity occasionally becomes borderline cloying. Readable, fast-paced, and not badly done for what it is, it still should have been so much more.

Verdict: Watch an episode of My Little Margie instead. **1/2.

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