Kids are impressionable and inquisitive – which almost spelled disaster for The Adventures of Superman star George Reeves.
The actor, who was best known for playing the iconic superhero, used to recount a tale about how he was extra cautious about meeting children at public events because they were incapable of separating the actor from his super-powered character. In at least one instance, this appears to have led to some very real danger.
While attending an event, Reeves was approached by a young boy who pulled a pistol on him – not to rob him, but to test the theory that Superman was really invulnerable to bullets. Reeves demonstrated some true heroism (and quick thinking) while staring down the barrel of a Luger pistol by telling the boy that the bullets would bounce off of him and injure innocent bystanders. Apparently satisfied with that explanation, the kid handed over the weapon and tragedy was averted.
This interesting bit of superhero trivia was recounted in the 2006 film Hollywoodland, although researchers are at least a little bit skeptical of its veracity. While Reeves himself told this tale on numerous occasions, historians have never been able to find verifiable proof of it happening. I believe it, though – if only because my own uncle donned a bath towel cape and took a header down the cellar stairs because he believed he could fly after watching the show. Clearly, some kids really bought into the program…
For more trivia and history on George Reeves’ tragic life, swing by the actor’s IMDB page. [via Reddit]