10 Little Rascals Facts That Most Fans Don’t Talk About
via Movieclips Classic Trailers / Youtube
Looking back on childhood brings up a sense of nostalgia for many adults, especially those who were raised in the golden days. And there’s nothing more lovely in the world of wistfulness than The Little Rascals, a show of kids being… kids. Let’s take a look at some of the show’s facts below.
- A rascal was said to have murdered his wife. Robert Blake, a star in the 70s, was making rounds in newspapers in the early 2000s when he was found accountable for the murder of his wife. Blake, whose birth name was Michael Gubitosi, played a role in Our Gang as Mickey.
- The child actors were often targeted by imposters. Billie Thomas, George McFarland, and Darla Hood were some of the victims with people who claimed to have been them.
- Hal Roach wanted to create a series that portrayed children just being themselves, so he created Our Gang and subsequently The Little Rascals. According to Julia Lee, historian, and author of “Our Gang: A Racial History of The Little Rascals,” it was a total success.
- Alfalfa’s actor died tragically. Carl Switzer (Alfalfa) was the perfect example of career decline and tragic death that the “curse” of The Little Rascals had done. He wanted to become successful in acting but failed to do so, so he worked several odd jobs to survive. Among the jobs he got was to train hunting dogs; a man named Moses Stiltz was a customer. Things didn’t turn out well for the two and ended up with the latter shooting Switzer to death. Stiltz claimed that he did it “for self-defense” and the court ruled in favor of him. Only several years later that a witness came forward and told them that the “self-defense” claim was completely fake and that Switzer was killed without cause.
- According to Julia Lee, author of “Our Gang: A Racial History of The Little Rascals,” Our Gang and early The Little Rascals films thrived so much duly because the kids got along so well as if they were only playing on the set.
- Matthew Beard (Stymie) and Dickie Moore were friends in real life. Although they portrayed total opposites in film, they were best buds offscreen. Their friendship was ruined by judging adults, who often condemned them for being different in color.
- It was deemed “progressive” but at the same time “racist.” While the idea of The Little Rascals was an eye-opener by many for casting both white and black kids, it was a bit uncomfortable to watch; the kids were portraying irresponsible stereotypes that weren’t true.
- Petey the Pitbull died due to being poisoned. Petey, whose original name was Pal, was known for the distinctive circle around his right eye – a naturally occurring streak. Pal was immediately replaced by different dog actors, but the news was nevertheless heartbreaking.
- George McFarland, who gained popularity for portraying the lovable character Spanky, didn’t like his character so much but defended his honor until the end. A bar and a restaurant closed shops when McFarland sued them illegally using his character.
- There was a saying “curse” that surrounded the child stars of Our Gang and The Little Rascals. Some have suffered an early death, while others endured a career decline after the show.