Opie Vs. Jethro

The importance of being the loudest ‘voice’ must not be underestimated.  Just ask Jethro Bodine.

Here at Visual Edge Design we harp on the importance of SEO, strategically designed websites, well written content, constantly growing keyword rich blogs, etc, for a reason.

We talk about strategies, rankings, visibility, and growth, but it all comes down to one thing.

You must constantly fight to have your voice heard.  If you don’t, the other guys voice WILL be heard, no matter how incorrect it is.

Here is a prime example.opie

If you haven’t already, you need to watch Cinderella Man starring Russell Crow andRenee Zellweger.  It is an amazing true story about human perseverance and triumph directed by Ron Howard.  That is where the Opie reference comes in as Ron played the cute little boy character on The Andy Griffith Show years ago.

But where does Jethro from The Beverly Hillbillies fit into this?

Well, Cinderella Man, among other things, is about the historical fight between James Braddock and Max Baer Sr.  Max was favored 8-1 over James and a lot of people thought that Max would actually kill James.

That’s the big tension builder.  Max had killed Frank Campbell in the ring some few years before hitting him hard enough to separate his brain from his skull.

Now every good movie, in my opinion, has a good guy and a bad guy.  James Braddock was the good guy and Max Baer was the man killing machine bad guy.

Or at least that’s how Ron Howard portrayed him.  And it worked!  I hated the guy while I was watching the movie.  I’m sure that most people watching the movie did as well.  Ron did his job swimmingly coloring Max Bear Sr. as the villain.


jethro_bodineHere’s where Jethro comes in.

The character of Jethro was played by Max Baer Jr.  Yep, the ‘killers’ son.

So when the movie came out, Junior was extremely upset at Ron Howard’s portrayal of his father as the bad guy.

What Ron didn’t tell you was that Max Baer Sr. was so distraught after killing Frank Campbell that he had nightmares, cried several times from there out, and actually donated his subsequent fighting purses to Frank’s widow and two children.  He then went on to support her and put both of Frank’s kids through college.

The night of the fight Max went to Frank’s widow, Ellie, and offered her the hand that killed her husband.  She said “It even might have been you mighten’t it?” instantly forgiving Max.

Max Baer Jr. (Jethro) said in an interview with the New York Daily News in 2005,

My father cried about what happened to Frankie Campbell. He had nightmares. In reality, my father was one of the kindest, gentlest men you would ever hope to meet. He treated boxing the way today’s professional wrestlers do wrestling: part sport, mostly showmanship. He never deliberately hurt anyone.”200px-Max_Baer_at_Speculator_NY_1935

Upon his death in 1959, Max Baer Sr.’s funeral was attended by over 1500 people including former champions, politicians, celebrities, and common folk alike.  It stood as a testament to his extensive philanthropic achievements which are too long to list in this one blog post.

Suffice it to say Jethro’s dad was not the killing monster that Opie made him out to be.

But, the movie had the louder voice.  Therefore, the picture was painted and the opinion was formed in the general public.

So, make sure you are doing everything you can to make your own voice heard.

By the way, remind me sometime to tell you a few actual historical facts behind another favorite movie of mine, Tombstone.

Teaser: Doc is not saying ‘Huckleberry’.

By Michael Graves