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Wednesday, September 7, 2016

'Tab Hunter Confidential' DVD/BD Extras: More of the Untold Story of America's '50s Teen Idol

  • Tab Hunter Confidential [Blu-ray]
The 36 minutes of  bonus interviews in the recently released (and spectacularly produced) Blu-ray edition of (the Unreal TV reviewed) documentary "Tab Hunter Confidential" scream for this separate review. These additional comments by Hunter, several big stars/friends of the era, and other Hunter admirers can be considered the missing link between the theatrical version of "Confidential" and the Hunter biography of the same name. These people showing Hunter arguably even more love in the extra footage than they show in the film further validates that Hunter always being kind to both people and animals has its rewards.

Before getting to the primary topic du jour, the graciousness of Hunter deserves special mention. The documentary enhancing long-time regard for Hunter, his being very nice in an Unreal TV interview, and Hunter showing immense gratitude for the ongoing love for his film is behind a request for an autographed copy of the "Confidential" Blu-ray. Rather than ignore such requests or say "no," Hunter considerately has his PR rep. reply that Hunter either has to give all of us signed copies or none to any of us one. This makes the related disappointment very palpable.

Hunter himself remains the star of the show in the extra scenes, which approach the depth of the Hunter autobiography of the same name as the film. His numerous topics include more insight into his relationship with his challenging mother. telling his "where I was when Kennedy was shot" story, and great humor related to fellow teen idol (sorry Tab; I know that you HATE labels) Troy Donahue.

Other "Confidential" information that Hunter shares from the book relates to his first sexual encounter and his secret romance with Anthony Perkins.

Seeing uber-awesome film historian Robert Osborne throw in his two cents regarding lecherous Henry Wilson and his stable of hot young studs. Fellow Wilson stallion Robert Wagner (of the soon-to-be-reviewed 1967 caper film "Banning") shares his memories both of Wilson and of Wagner's deceased wife (and Hunter's very close friend) Natalie Wood.

Awesome gay rights poster boy George Takei shares his memory of being a young closeted man who learns of Hunter on seeing a shirtless photo of this blonde Adonis (sorry again, Tab) on the cover of a fan magazine. Seeing the eyes of Takei light up as he discusses subsequently rushing to see his first Hunter movie and watching every one that comes out (no pun intended boys) after that is terrific. Takei offers the true bonus of uttering his catchphrase.

Other household names who share memories of Tab in the bonus feature are Debbie Reynolds, John Waters, and "Lust in the Dust" co-star Lainie Kazan.

The only way to end this personal tribute to Hunter is to say that I casually know Tab Hunter and no one in Hollywood today is Tab Hunter. Thank YOU for your graciousness throughout the few months of my helping spread the word about your story and the kind and caring man underneath the oh-so-stunning packaging,

Anyone with questions or comments regarding Hunter is still strongly encouraged to either email me or to connect on Twitter via @tvdvdguy.