Tuesday, March 21, 2006

The Knife Guy cometh

Channel-surfing late at night in Reno last weekend, KJ and I stumbled upon the Knife Guy. We hadn't seen him on TV in a couple of years, and thought perhaps he had taken ill. Or dealt himself a fatal blow with a tactical folder. Or maybe just ran out of paranoid survivalists willing to shell out $200 for a lifetime supply of samurai swords.

The Knife Guy, whose real name is Tom O'Dell, formerly hawked his wares on Shop At Home TV — a low-rent kissin' cousin of HSN and QVC that appears even more narrowly targeted at the trailer park demographic than its competitors. Into the wee hours any weekend night, you could spin past Shop At Home and find Tom bellowing — at the top of his tobacco-dessicated lungs — the virtues of various bowie knives, katanas, and other aggressively lethal-looking cutlery, in a raspy Tennessee drawl thicker than blackstrap molasses on Rocky Top in January.

Then, suddenly, the Knife Guy and his "big'uns" (as Tom likes to call the largest blades in his arsenal — the kind one might employ for sport hunting, say, woolly mammoths) disappeared from the Shop At Home cablewaves. Weekend nights lost their anticipatory luster. But like televangelists, I Love Lucy reruns, and Tony Robbins, the Knife Guy couldn't be kept off the air forever. Or so it appears.

The Knife Guy's current cutlery extravaganza lacks even the basic local-PBS-station-on-pledge-night production values of his Knife Collectors Show on Shop At Home. In fact, the show we caught on Saturday evening looked like it was shot in Aunt Em and Uncle Henry's Kansas storm cellar under a 40-watt incandescent bulb, and recorded on a 20-year-old Betamax. But there was Tom — no longer accompanied by Shaun, the towheaded younger fellow whose job it was to lend a soupçon of frat-boy sex appeal to the old program — still raving about the insanely discounted deal one could score on a boatload of combat tactical specials.

I was so happy to see him I almost called up and ordered a Scottish claymore or an O'Dell's Royal Flush Bowie Collection my own self.

But I refrained.

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1 insisted on sticking two cents in:

Blogger LazGunX (Rick) offered these pearls of wisdom...

If any of you are interested, my son, a friend of his, and myself, created somewhat of a parody/tribute video to Shaun Leflar and Tom’s antics on http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o5UPWhxe-D0

As unbelievable as it sounds, there is a huge following for these guys, and a big push to get them back together.

If any of you have ever seen them, check my crazy video out, and make a comment. I think you'll like it.

6:56 PM  

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