Monday, May 4, 2015

Epic Reel of Vintage St. Louis News Outtakes Is Like Anchorman, Only Real

Posted By on Mon, May 4, 2015 at 11:28 AM

click to enlarge Eat your heart out, Ron Burgundy. - YOUTUBE
  • YouTube
  • Eat your heart out, Ron Burgundy.

"First, bend over, grab your knees, put your head between your legs and kiss your ass goodbye."

And with that, former Channel 4 weatherman Mike Fenwick kicks off what is surely the most bizarre and wonderful peek into the pastel-and-plaid world of St. Louis broadcast news in the 1970s and 1980s. The clip of Fenwick telling his viewers to inspect their posterior Doppler readings comes courtesy of YouTube user St. Louis Flashback, a self-described St. Louis historian who posted two jaw-dropping videos over the weekend.

Edited with an insider's glee, the two-part "St.Louis Local TV News Bloopers -- 1970s-80s" actually features only a few clips of the kind of news bloopers one would usually find on YouTube. Instead, most of the 50-plus minutes of footage reveals the behind-the-scenes antics and obscenity-filled rivalries between the most trusted faces in St. Louis news -- including well-known anchors Elliott Davis and Larry Conners.

"St. Louis Flashback" didn't want to give his real name, but told us, "I collect these things -- anything from local TV, movie theaters and KXOK radio. I don't give out names or how I got the items." He adds, "I know people people who have worked in all media since the '60s."

And some of those people's colleagues are surely red-faced now that this video is out there. There may be no Sex Panther cologne or hand grenades, but we guarantee that after watching reporters whipping out their "solid journalistic tool" or demonstrating how to build a ballpoint pen from your wife's douche-nozzle, you'll wonder if Anchorman wasn't actually a documentary focusing on the golden age of local news in St. Louis.

See also: Goodbye, Tim Ezell: Our 7 Favorite Moments From FOX2's Goofiest Anchor

Here are a few screen grabs of our favorite moments from both videos, which are embedded in full at the bottom of the story:

1. Elliott a destruction.

click to enlarge YOUTUBE

First of all: yes, that is current "You Paid For It" host Elliott Davis of Fox2 standing at the scene of a massive blaze, which has apparently turned an Air National Guard outpost into an apocalyptic hellscape. Yet despite Davis' resplendent afro and badass leather jacket, it appears that a bunch of broadcast reporters heard Davis sign-off "I'm Elliott Davis ... at a destruction" and promptly lost their minds.

What follows after the Davis clip is a series of juvenile parodies, proto-memes that predate the internet by decades, that only get weirder and more committed. The decomposing remains of a deer skull make an appearance, and even Larry Conners gets in on the action.

2. A Journalist is Always Ready for an Interview.

click to enlarge YOUTUBE

A well-produced clip that was seemingly filmed for the Channel 2 staff's own, um, personal enjoyment, this reporter demonstrates that a real newsman always keeps his tools handy and within immediate reach.

Turn the page for more outtakes and blooper-reel shenanigans.

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