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Sherry Alberoni ...
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Sharon Baird ...
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Bobby Burgess ...
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Lonnie Burr ...
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Tommy Cole ...
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Eileen Diamond ...
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Darlene Gillespie ...
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Judy Harriet ...
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Cheryl Holdridge ...
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Cubby O'Brien ...
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Karen Pendleton ...
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Mickey Rooney Jr. ...
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23 November 1980 (USA)  »

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Whither Tommy Kirk?
29 November 2014 | by (North Carolina, USA) – See all my reviews

While it's wonderful that Walt Disney Productions was able to invite as many of the original Mouseketeers as they could, this otherwise charming, nostalgic special was inarguably marred by the absence of one of the studio's biggest stars of the late Walt-era: Tommy Kirk.

According to the book "Tinker Belles and Evil Queens: The Walt Disney Company from the Inside Out," by Sean Griffin, Kirk had already kicked drugs and retired from show business, now working in a cleaning and upholstery firm. Though the book implies he was in the special, it isn't true. But the reason for that, along with an inaccurate statement that all this happened in 1984, was that a member of the studio's publicity department said to him, "If I had my way, all you people would be buried in the same grave." The "you people" he was talking about: gay people.

It is therefore ironic that out gays and gay allies would play a major part in the studio's return to prominence just a few years later. But Kirk's absence still cast an unhappy shadow over the reunion.

7/10: Three points off for the sin of omission. However, the aforementioned book is also guilty of the sin of omission: it fails to mention the presence of Dennis Day, the other (known) gay male Mouseketeer from the original MICKEY MOUSE CLUB, in this reunion.


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