Shepherd’s Og and Charlie stories we’ve known about focus on our brute-like heritage that hasn’t really changed. This would conform to the joke about the discovery of the missing link between our bestial past and civilized man. The link, of course, is us, a part of Shepherd’s attitude that shows up consistently in other contexts.
Thus, I was surprised upon beginning to listen to an “Og and Charlie” from the 1964-1965 Syndicated Shepherd series, because he begins by emphasizing the birth and development of music, with Og starting mankind off on this aesthetically joyous and peaceful path, suggesting a variation on the old saw—about music having charms to soothe those savage brutes. Well, I figured that Ol’ Shep has bamboozled me here: Og’s creation of music in this story shows that he has evolved and we really are headed onward and upward.
Then Shepherd links our musical world to that other part of our heritage by playing more music—some headhunter chants as they return from a successful raid, commenting that “We’re all in it together,” emphasizing the downer with: “You, Beethoven, the headhunter.” Yes, Shepherd has been consistent after all—we’re still a bit bestial. With one Og and Charlie story, that Ol’ Shep has double-bamboozled me.
To end on a corny and platitudinous note (pun?), I’ve always found music to be one of the most glorious, varied, and elegant inventions–whether I understand or enjoy the specific form or not!
Dee Snider of Twisted Sister,
singing their marvelous
“We’re Not Gonna Take it”