“Blankit’s First Show” premiered on UK TV

Saturday, July 12, 1986

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From Club Sandwich N°36, 1985:

Readers of Club Sandwich No. 33 will remember Linda’s account of how she found her dream pony while in Texas with Wings. An Appaloosa, one of a breed long linked with the American Indian, his son Blankit (a pun on the white, spotted ‘blanket’ covering his rear end) now lives happily in England. While this beautiful, distinctive animal was preparing to be judged against other horses for the first time, MPL decided to capture the process on film. Blankit’s First Show is the result, as these stills show.

Seen first at trainer Peter Larrigan’s Parkhurst Stables, Blankit runs free under blue, blue skies to the sound of Paul and Michael Jackson singing ‘The Man’: the song’s mood of freedom and optimism fits perfectly. (In all, four tracks from Pipes Of Peace are used and fit in amazingly well.) Appaloosas’ tails are generally trimmed, but Linda prefers to keep Blankit’s natural and a sequence with his trainer in a sunlit barn confirms it hasn’t harmed his looks.

Peter used to work in a circus, where he learned that animals respond better to kindness than to cruelty. Blankit certainly seems at ease, but how will he behave at the show, where he’ll be exposed to mares for the first time? ‘Sweetest Little Show’ accompanies the final preparations, then Paul’s slightly distorted voice recites a few words of encouragement to “All you horse riders” (an unreleased track) while Blankit goes through his paces before an inscrutable, bowler-hatted judge.

In contrast to this very English scene, Linda relates on the soundtrack how an Indian community were almost— but not quite — saved from massacre by their Appaloosa ponies. Back at the show, ‘The Other Me’ is highly appropriate since Blankit is on his best behaviour, compared to his high spirits at Parkhurst. The judging over, he gambols with relief while Peter anxiously awaits the verdict. Success! Almost as the credits roll, the rosette for best turn-out is attached to Blankit’s gleaming bridle. The churning sounds of ‘Hey Hey’ play us out.

You don’t have to be horse mad to enjoy Blankit’s First Show, which refreshes the mind as it delights the eye. MPL hope to show it on British TV, while it would make an excellent second feature to any family film.

Last updated on May 3, 2020

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