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Bob Denver


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Bob Denver
A Brief History about actor Bob Denver

Gilligan Antics


Bob Denver was born Robert Osborne Denver on January 9, 1935 in New Rochelle, New York, but he was raised in Brownwood, Texas. He attended Loyola Marymount University and graduated with a degree in political science in Los Angeles, California and attended the Sylvia Herpolscheimer Academy for Performance Arts. His first work was not in acting, but as a mailman. He also coached physical education at Corpus Christi School, a Roman Catholic elementary school located in Pacific Palisades, California. He also taught math.

Bob Denver got a huge break when he screen tested to be on the show, The Many Loves of Dobie Gillis (1959). He was cast as Maynard G. Krebs. Maynard disliked the words "work", "marriage" and "police". Any time those words were used, there would be fear and even some fainting involved. This sitcom ran for four years. Bob Denver landed some small roles in movies but his next big part was Gilligan on Gilligan's Island.

He was a comedic character. He enjoyed the verbal humor when he played Maynard G. Krebs and he accepted the part of Gilligan because of the physical comedy involved.

His real life wasn't anything like the characters he played on television. He was an introverted, well read man who enjoyed children. He especially loved his own four children from three different wives. He was married a total of four times.

After Gilligan's Island ended, he performed in other television shows and offered his voice for the animated series The New Adventures of Gilligan and its sequel Gilligan's Planet. He often wore his sailor's cap from the show and was referred to as "Little Buddy".

He died from complications of cancer on September 2, 2005 at Wake Forest University Baptist Hospital in North Carolina. There was a Twitter and Facebook trend in September 2012 reviving his death even though it happened seven years prior. You can't believe everything you read on Facebook.

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Gilligan was the bumbling, goofy first mate of the Skipper and invariably created mini-catastrophes on the island for the castaways, often revolving around trying to get rescued. There was the time Gilligan ate the glow-in-the-dark paste that was meant to be a beacon to a ship that was passing close to the island. In one episode he had been collecting feathers from exotic birds to use for pillows and right before the Mars Land Rover was going to film them requesting help, Gilligan stepped in glue and everyone was covered in feathers so they looked like weird birds from Mars instead of the missing castaways. Because of his kindness and innocence, he was forgiven his many transgressions.

Gilligan made many discoveries during their internment on the island that led to disastrous results. These discoveries often challenged Gilligan and he had some big decisions to make. There was the time when he found seeds and when eaten you could read minds. When the seeds created discord among the castaways, Gilligan collected all of them up and burned them to retain peace.

Most of the manual labor on the island was done by Gilligan with little complaint.

He would get chastised or the Skipper would swat his hat at him when he interrupted with what seemed like random pointless thoughts but would trigger some hidden knowledge in the Professor to solve a problem.

Gilligan met Jonas Grumby while serving in the United States Navy. The Skipper was saved from being struck and killed by a runaway depth charge by Gilligan and as a result, when The Skipper purchased his ship the Minnow he hired Gilligan on as his first mate. Gilligan's past isn't complete, just snippets of information gleaned from random statements made by Gilligan on the island. An older brother is mentioned and this is where he acquired his famous red shirt. His father was short, wore glasses and had a mustache. His Aunt Sarah had a "sneaky disease" and he imparted some advice to Ginger that was from his grandmother. Gilligan once mentioned that he was born in Pennsylvania, but nothing specific. He also mentioned childhood friends like Skinny Mulligan, Fatso Flanagan and Billy Maguire.

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