16 November 2009
Todays subject, cool teachers on film. When you were there you didn't pay attention, they looked like men from the past, but teachers can be cool, not really in what they preach but in what they wear. From their elbow patches to fifteen pens in the shirt pocket, it's all in the details.
Have you ever considered how cool the Ghostbusters were before they put on their proton packs?
Well, long before saving New York from oblivion, they were sacked by the Dean at Colombia University for being wastes of space, the lecturers/parapsychologists Venkman (Bill Murray), Stanz (Dan Aykroyd) and Spengler (Harold Ramis) were actually pretty dapper, carrying heavy equipment alongside duffle coats, long macs, chinos, moccasins and plaid shirts.
Moving on to archeology teacher, and by far the most adventurous of them all, Indiana Jones (Harrison Ford in Raiders of the Lost Ark), when he's not being flashed tattooed eyelids or given an apple (a day), he's off around the world dodging Peruvians armed with bare arses and poison darts, pesky snakes, Pat Roach, Indians who can pull out your heart, Pat Roach again, and loads of them bloody Nazis.
If Mr Singleton, my form tutor carried a whip and a pistol I'd have paid far more attention. Imagine the stories on the first day back from the half-term hols, you'd never believe them. Forget for a minute, his famous Herbert Johnson hat, and leather whip, it's at school with his sensible side parting, specs, tie and tweed jacket where he looks more refined, if only the kids knew eh?
Now to the stoner English tutor, Professor Dave Jennings (Donald Sutherland in Animal House), he doesn't give a toss, Milton is boring, let's get stoned instead, I'd have swapped my maniacal English teacher for him any day. Smoking spliffs and shagging the freshers, way to go Mr J! Corduroy three-piece suit and scarf, houndstooth check and tash, dishevelled smart, scruff personified.
Then there's David Sumner (Dustin Hoffman in Straw Dogs) a mathematician so busy working out his equations at home he ignores his sexy wife, so much so the local yokels take advantage, but alas, go too far, you won't like him when he's angry. Never far away from an impressive array of heavy woolen jumpers, chinos, canvas pumps and of course the obligatory tweed jacket.
Notable mentions must go to our very own Grange Hill school, Mr Mitchell who it was okay to like, and 'Bullet Baxter' who was stern, but fair. Also to Mr Farthing (Colin Welland in Kes) whilst Mr Grice was caning the kids, Mr Sugden was Bobby Charlton, English teacher Farthing - Welland a teacher in real life, was the only person who truly understood the world of Billy Casper, and he was cool too.