Whip Wilson

Active - 1939 - 1955  |   Born - Jun 16, 1911 in Granite, IL  |   Died - Oct 23, 1964 in Los Angeles, CA  |   Genres - Western, Action

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A cross between Buck Jones and Lash LaRue, or so his publicity claimed, Whip Wilson is by many fans of B-Westerns considered the final nail in the genre's coffin. A fairly successful singer, Wilson (born Roland Charles Meyers) was discovered by Jones' longtime business partner, Monogram producer Scott R. Dunlap, who tested the waters by awarding him a supporting role in the Jimmy Wakely Western Silver Trails (1948). Despite plenty of evidence to the contrary, Dunlap was convinced of Wilson's potential and starred him in no less than 23 oaters (1949-1952), beginning with Crashing Thru (1949), which at least had the saving grace of Andy Clyde as the comic sidekick. But Clyde was later replaced by Fuzzy Knight and former Red Ryder Jim Bannon, neither of whom was of much help to the newcomer. To compound matters, the bizarre popularity of PRC's Lash LaRue led Dunlap and Wilson to concentrate on the latter's whip-wielding skills, an entertaining dexterity but not enough to insure sustained popularity. Following his stint as a B-Western hero, Wilson taught Burt Lancaster how to use a whip in The Kentuckian (1955) and ran a Los Angeles apartment building complex.

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