Saturday, July 5, 2008

TODAY'S TWD: HARRY REEMS

'New Amsterdam', 'Journeyman', and 'Doctor Who' were not the only series this season to give us history lessons about the real world. With the historical Tiddlywinkydinks, we've looked at Walt Whitman, HG Wells, Bill Buckner, and lots about Agatha Christie.

But who'd ever guess that we'd be covering Harry Reems in Toobworld?
'Swingtown' is turning into a goldmine for trivia about what was going on back in the mid-1970s, and a great example happened this past week with the arrival of Harry Reems to the swinging neighborhood.

It was the televersion of Harry Reems, of course, in Chicago to raise awareness and money in order to fight the obscenity charges against him because of his involvement in "Deep Throat".

Allison Waldman of TVSquad did her research for her review of "Go Your Own Way", the latest episode of 'Swingtown':

The actor playing Harry Reems (Rick D. Wasserman) was quite good, but the standee of Harry was all wrong. The moustache was right, but Harry had a very hairy chest. I don't know about you, but I demand accuracy in the depiction of porno stars from the era.
I've only seen one Reems movie - "Wet Rainbows". I probably should expand my knowledge on his work. Ha!

But in the meantime, here's info about him from Wikipedia:

Harry Reems was born Herbert Streicher to a Jewish family in Bronx, New York on August 27, 1947. He served briefly in the United States Marine Corps before electing to pursue an acting career, principally in off-Broadway theater.


Looking for ways to support himself, Streicher began to appear in dozens of short, silent stag films, often referred to as "loops", during the early 1970s. He eventually went on to appear in approximately 140 feature-length sexploitation and hardcore films between 1971 and 1989, with Deep Throat (1972) and The Devil in Miss Jones (1973) being the best known.

For the production of Deep Throat in Florida in January 1972, Streicher was hired to be part of the lighting crew, but the director was unable to cast one of the roles and asked him. He was paid $100 for the one day of acting work. Streicher was unaware that the director had given him the name "Harry Reems" until he saw the movie.

Reems's appearance in Deep Throat led to his arrest by FBI agents in New York City in July 1974, and indictment in Memphis, Tennessee in June 1975 on federal charges of conspiracy to distribute obscenity across state lines. He was convicted in April 1976 with 11 other individuals and four corporations. His conviction was overturned on appeal in April 1977 because his activities in making the film occurred before a U.S. Supreme Court ruling on obscenity in 1973 (Miller v. California), and Reems was granted a new trial. The charges against Reems were dropped in August.
Reems's defense claimed that he was the first American actor to be prosecuted by the Federal government merely for appearing in a film, and he received considerable support from established Hollywood and New York celebrities during his trial. His successful appeal was handled by attorney Alan Dershowitz.

Today, outside organized religion, he continues to meditate, pray and offer gratitude to God. "If I didn't put God in my life, I'd be dead now," he said. "I am not religious. I'm spiritual, 100 percent."

He continues to identify himself as "Harry Reems".

BCnU!
Toby OB

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