The Jolly Boys Club

The Great Man has Great Friends. Meet the Jolly Boys.

Life in Summerfield would be so much simpler if Gildy only had Leroy and Marjorie to worry about and Birdie to keep them in line. But it isn't to be.

Earle Ross as Judge Horace Hooker

We meet Judge Horace Parker in the first episode.  His primary role in the beginning is to monitor Gildersleeve's administration of the estate left to his niece and nephew. But he fills the roll of both friend and foil to Gildersleeve. "The Old Goat" is played by Earle Ross. Ross was a pioneer in early radio with his own show, The Earle Ross Theater of the Air, also starring in the continuing radio drama Inspector Post. The cantankerous Hooker and Gildy battle through the early episodes, but in time a genuine friendship develops between the two.

Earle Ross

Richard LeGrand as Peavey

Another confidant of Gildersleeve's is the neighborhood druggist, Richard Q. Peavey. Mr. Peavey, played by Richard LeGrand, is reminiscent of Bill Thompson's "Wallace Wimple" character from Fibber McGee and Molly. Not only do both have a distinctively nasal "Droopy Dog" voice, both are notoriously hen-pecked by unseen overbearing wives. (Mr. Peavey wheedles an invitation to Christmas Eve at the Gildersleeve house to avoid spending time with Mrs. Peavey and her mother.) Just as Fibber McGee audiences came to love Mr. Wimple's greeting "Hello folks," audiences would respond with automatic laughs at Peavey's catch-phrase "Now I wouldn't say that…" Richard LeGrand would be a regular on Fibber McGee and Molly's later shows as Ole, the Elks Club Janitor.

 

Floyd The Barber (Floyd Munson & Mel Blanc)

Peavy GildyGildy also received wisdom and advice from rough-around-the-edges Floyd the Barber. Floyd Munson was played at least twice in the first season by Mel Blanc, but the role truly belonged to Arthur Q. Bryan. Bryan was the voice of Doc Gamble on Fibber McGee and Molly, but is more universally known for the character of Looney Toon's Elmer Fudd. (Elmer Fudd is one of the few characters at Looney Toons that Blanc never made his own.) Floyd often brings a down to earth, working class wisdom to Gildy's world.

 

Artur Q BryanKen Christy as Police Chief Don Gates

In the fourth season of the show, the gentlemen of Summerfield are joined by the terrific bass voice of Ken Christy as Police Chief Don Gates to form the Jolly Boys Club. The club begins as a service to keep the boys of the town out of trouble. But when the young men are less than appreciative, the grown men, who are really boys at heart, discover that the space above Floyd's Barbershop is a terrific place to play pinochle, drink cokes, and gather around the old piano to sing.

The Jolly Boys become a critical part of life in Summerfield, aiding and abetting Gildersleeve in his plots and schemes, as well as acting as his conscience from time to time.

 

 

Gale GordonGale Gordon as Rumson Bullard

Although not a member of the Jolly Boys, Gildersleeve's neighbor from across the street, retired millionaire Rumson Bullard, deserves mention. Bullard brings a measure of adversity to Gildy's world, very similar to the original pompous Gildersleeve character in Fibber McGee and Molly. Bullard is played by Gale Gordon, Fibber McGee's Mayor LaTrivia. LaTrivia filled the "pompous neighbor" role when Gildy left Wistful Vista.  Gildy and Rumson (Gale Gordon) alternate between disingenuous chumminess when one wants something from the other, and open rancor, (at such times Gildy is a "nincompoop water buffalo" according to Rumson.) In time Gildersleeve will date Rumson's sisters, and compete with him for the affections for pretty nurse Katherine Milford.


GG441008 The Jolly Boys Club Is Formed
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GG461204 Jolly Boys Sponsor an Orphan
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