Do you hear the grasshopper? (Kung Fu)

Do you hear the grasshopper? (Kung Fu)

Kunk Fu Televison Serie

Kunk Fu Televison Series

Remember back in the early 70’s when the TV series “Kung Fu” first came on the air? This was one of those kind of shows that people either loved fanatically or hated dreadfully. I fell in love with it after the pilot “movie of the week” in 1972. The character of Kwai Chang Caine (David Carradine) roamed the wild west dispensing the wisdom of a calm, meek, reserved, Shaolin monk, yet, when need be, could open a can of whoop ass like no western character had ever seen. Jumping up and kicking high, landing skull cracking blows to his aggressors. The coolest thing, and I think probably pretty revolutionary was the fact that all the fight sequences were shown in a mixture of full speed and slow motion, showing the blows landing with loud cracks and thuds. Even cooler was the surprised look on the face of the unlucky cowpoke at the receiving end. It amazes me that I can recall, from the age of 12, the fact that the show came on ABC, Thursday night at 8p.m.. My problem with that was, at that time, it was shown opposite “Gunsmoke” on CBS, which was a show my dad watched religiously. Over the years I have managed to watch the entire series and each episode, but at the time it aired I could only catch the show periodically for 2 basic reasons.

  1. If Gunsmoke happened to be a rerun that week.. or…
  2. If my dad was busy

Of course, even then it was problematic because we didn’t have cable TV in Sugar Grove, VA in 1972,. We only got maybe 3 channels on a good day. (Did I mention we only had the one black and white TV as well) As luck would have it, ABC, Channel 19, WKPT, Kingsport, TN, only had good reception if the antennae was pointed perfectly, and the weather was just right. (and if there were no airplanes flying overhead to disturb the signal).

I was saddened to hear  of David Carradine’s death last year. Most of the press he received following his death, unfortunately, was about the manner of his demise, rather than his incredible acting career. After all, I have always held firm that what a man does in his personal life, is his own business, within limits of course.

I used to love those Kung Fu flashbacks that were part of the show. Young Caine getting schooled by the elderly monks on the secrets of life and living, always with a little dose of Kung Fu wisdom.

Master Po: Close your eyes. What do you hear?
Young Caine: I hear the water, I hear the birds.
Po: Do you hear your own heartbeat?
Caine: No.
Po: Do you hear the grasshopper which is at your feet?
Caine: Old man, how is it that you hear these things?
Po: Young man, how is it that you do not?

You can watch the entire pilot episode for Kung Fu ..just use the “Vodpod” on the bottom right column of this blog. The episode is broken into 8 parts, hosted on Youtube.


1 Response to “Do you hear the grasshopper? (Kung Fu)”

  1. 1 wrmcnutt
    06/04/2010 at 14:21

    “Please . . . do not mess with me . . . for I am, over qualified . . . to kick your ass.” – Kwai Chang Caine (paraphrased)

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