Skip’s Quips: With Baseball Season A-Comin’, ‘Damn Yankees!’ Should Be on the Menu

Blog Sketch 082813I always thought Damn Yankees! was a severely underrated musical.

It has fun, catchy songs. Great, inimitable turns by Gwen Verdon and Ray Walston. And an amusing, baseball-centric story relating to the Washington Senators’ Devil-assisted quest for the pennant.

Now that baseball season is nearly upon us, this film should be on the plates of cineastes everywhere.

I’m not sure why it isn’t. For some reason, it’s hard to find on TV these days, despite the fame of many of its numbers (“You Gotta Have Heart” and “Whatever Lola Wants” included). There are laughs and charm within this piece of celluloid. Someone should schedule it for the telly more often.

I admit that my thoughts do turn to baseball when February and March roll around, and though a wealth of film choices pertaining to the Great American Pastime is available year-round, musical options are limited. That’s one of the reasons why Damn Yankees! is so valuable. It’s unusual, an anomaly. And good enough to be a standard.

I, for one, can’t wait to see it again.

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