It may be the most storied head injury in U.S. history -- that the victim survived, at least -- and frankly, I can't believe we haven't blogged about it yet. In 1849, Phineas Gage was a railroad construction foreman working in Cavendish, Vermont, when a poorly-packed lump of explosive powder sent a four-foot-long, 1.25-inches-wide metal rod into his skull, through his brain and out the other side, where it landed almost 30 yards behind him. As grotesque as the accident was, there would've been nothing remarkable about it had Gage not been semi-ambulatory and able to speak just a few minutes later. Even more amazing, he made a seemingly complete recovery, and in just a few months, was back to work. But according to his co-workers, something about Gage had changed.
A few months after his accident, Gage's doctor wrote this:
From Passage of an Iron Rod through the Head
Gage was fitful, irreverent, indulging at times in the grossest profanity (which was not previously his custom), manifesting but little deference for his fellows, impatient of restraint or advice when it conflicts with his desires, at times pertinaciously obstinate, yet capricious and vacillating, devising many plans of future operations, which are no sooner arranged than they are abandoned in turn for others appearing more feasible. A child in his intellectual capacity and manifestations, he has the animal passions of a strong man. Previous to his injury, although untrained in the schools, he possessed a well-balanced mind, and was looked upon by those who knew him as a shrewd, smart businessman, very energetic and persistent in executing all his plans of operation. In this regard his mind was radically changed, so decidedly that his friends and acquaintances said he was 'no longer Gage.'
Thus, Gage the survivor -- after working for P.T. Barnum as an attraction for several years -- became of utmost interest to psychologists (and eventually, cognitive neuropsychologists). Of course, Gage's isn't the only example of amazing head trauma lived through, just the most famous. Check out this gnarly nail-gun accident:
It takes just 14 words—“Welcome to Good Burger, home of the Good Burger, can I take your order?”—to make a ‘90s kid swoon with nostalgia. Good Burger, the beloved Nickelodeon comedy about a couple of daft teens who try to save their fast food joint from corporate greed, was born out of a Kenan Thompson/Kel Mitchell sketch on All That in the mid-'90s. A year later, due to its popularity, it found itself being turned into its own live-action movie, with Brian Robbins at the helm. Today—20 years after its original release—it’s a silly cult hit that’s indelibly a part of Generation Y. Revisit the classic with these facts about Good Burger.
1. KEL MITCHELL AUDITIONED FOR ALL THAT WITH HIS CHARACTER FROM GOOD BURGER.
In an interview with The A.V. Club, Kel Mitchell explained how he came up with Ed. “I did a ‘dude’ voice, and that’s where Ed [from Good Burger] was kind of born,” he said. “I did that there at the audition. They were just cracking up.”
2. ED’S FIRST APPEARANCE WAS IN THE JOSH SERVER SKETCH, “DREAM REMOTE.”
Essentially, Good Burger was born out of a random character decision made during one little sketch. “It was where [Josh] could have a remote control that could control his entire life,” Mitchell told The A.V. Club. “So, he could fast-forward through his sister nagging, he could make pizza come really quickly. I was the pizza guy. I came to the door, and the pizza guy didn’t really have a voice, so I was like, ‘Mleh, here’s your pizza! That was the first time we saw Ed, and so they created Good Burger.”
3. ED’S LOOK WAS INSPIRED BY MILLI VANILLI.
When prepping for Ed’s debut on All That, Kel Mitchell spotted what would become the character’s signature look. “I remember I went to the hair room, and I saw these braids. It was like these early Brandy ’90s Milli Vanilli braids. I put those on, and it came to life,” he told The A.V. Club.
4. THOUSANDS OF POUNDS OF MEAT STUNK UP THE SET.
For a movie all about burgers, you better believe the production had a ton of them sitting around on set. "At one point, there was over 1750 pounds of meat on the set," Kenan Thompson told The Morning Call. "Some of it was old meat. It was so nasty. Some of the burgers would stay out there for a long time. I felt sorry for the extras who had to eat them with cold, clammy fries. But on screen, those burgers look good."
5. ELMER’S GLUE WAS USED TO KEEP THE FOOD LOOKING FRESH.
In order to keep the food looking good on screen, the production resorted to old, albeit inedible, tricks. "It was so gross, because when I scoop out ice cream in the movie, it was really vegetable shortening with food coloring,” Mitchell told The Morning Call. “When I poured milk on cereal, we used Elmer's Glue so the flakes wouldn't get soggy."
6. KENAN AND KEL CONTRIBUTED TO THE GOOD BURGER SOUNDTRACK.
Good Burger was their baby, so of course Kenan and Kel took the reins on more than just the creation of the characters, according to a 1997 interview with The Morning Call. Specifically, Kel partnered up with Less Than Jake on the hit song, “We’re All Dudes.” Because of this, the soundtrack actually charted at 101 on the Billboard 200.
7. GOOD BURGER WAS LINDA CARDELLINI’S FEATURE FILM DEBUT.
In an interview with The A.V. Club, the Freaks and Geeks star reminisced about her breakout role in the Nickelodeon movie. “That’s my sister’s favorite role that I’ve ever played! It was so much fun. It was my first film, and it was a fantastic part,” Cardellini said. “I got to play crazy! Nobody knew who I was, and I got the part from the table read.”
8. WRITER DAN SCHNEIDER INTENDED TO GIVE UP ACTING WHEN HE WROTE GOOD BURGER, BUT HE PLAYED MR. BAILY IN THE FILM.
On creating Good Burger, writer/producer/actor Dan Schneider explained to The A.V. Club: “I’ve always wanted to write, and after I was doing All That and Kenan & Kel, I got the opportunity to do another TV show—I was still going on auditions. I realized that if I took that show, I was going to have to give up All That and Kenan & Kel. I really didn’t want to do [that] ... I passed on the acting role, and that was really the turning point, I guess, in 1996, when I was like, ‘You know what? I’m going to put my acting career on the back burner, and I’m going to be a writer-producer.’ Then I wrote the movie Good Burger.” However, if you watch the movie, you’ll notice Schneider starring as Mr. Baily.
9. THE ORIGINAL TRAILER FEATURED A SCENE THAT DIDN’T MAKE THE MOVIE.
For reasons that remain a mystery, a scene where a Good Burger customer orders “a good shake” from Ed (Mitchell), only to receive an actual bodily shaking from the Good Burger employee, didn’t make the final cut. It did, however, feature for a few seconds in the theatrical trailer.
10. KENAN AND KEL REUNITED FOR A GOOD BURGER SKETCH ON THE TONIGHT SHOW.
In 2015, Kenan and Kel reunited for a Good Burger sketch with Jimmy Fallon. This time, however, Fallon played Ed’s co-worker, while Kenan came in as a construction worker as a surprise. "We've been wanting to get back together," Mitchell told E! News. "It was just about the right project ... it felt like home."
11. THE FIRST LINE IN THE FILM IS THE SAME AS THE LAST LINE.
Appropriately, the line is, “Welcome to Good Burger, home of the Good Burger, can I take your order?”—just watch the movie.
As a recurring feature, our team combs the Web and shares some amazing Amazon deals we’ve turned up. Here’s what caught our eye today, July 25.
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