Thursday, December 3, 2009

The amazing Chicken Boy

One of the most beloved landmarks in Los Angeles' Highland Park neighborhood is the famous Chicken Boy on Figueroa, atop the La Fuente No. 6 restaurant.

1973 Photo from Los Angeles Public Library

Chicken Boy is a 22 foot tall fiberglass statue that once graced a fried chicken restaurant in downtown L.A., on Broadway between 4th and 5th, across from the Grand Central Market.

He's well-built, likely influenced by the emphasis on health and glamor prevalent in Hollywood. His head is nicely coifed and his comb and wattle are neatly trimmed. He's holding a bucket that promises a tasty fried chicken dinner.

The look in his eyes has changed since 1981, though. He seems mellower, less confrontational. Is it because he's matured, with all his travels?

After being saved from demolition when his downtown restaurant closed, Chicken Boy spent many years in storage, while his fans searched for a new home for him. He had a brush with celebrity as the star of his own movie, a PBS documentary, and a guest appearance on a comedy radio show. Neverthless, he was still homeless. Finally, in October of 2007, a home was found for him, in Highland Park. You can read all about it here.

Los Angeles Public Library photo

Here he is at the height of his glory, on Broadway in 1981.

The look in his eyes has changed since 1981, though. He seems mellower, less confrontational. Is it because he's matured, with all his travels?

No longer homeless - Chicken Boy.

8 comments:

Gilly said...

He's very realistic! Hadn't realised he was so tall until I read the piece about him!

Statues and Mascots can get well loved sometimes, so that their removal causes an outcry! Somehow we can relate to the mascot in a way we never transfer to the product.

mo.stoneskin said...

Chicken Boy is truly amazing. I'm, um, well and truly inspired.

Beverly said...

If I were a Chicken Girl, I believe I would have designs on Chicken Boy.

Sue (Someone's Mom) said...

He really does look real...well, at least from the neck down. This made me smile!

Sue

KathyR said...

Have you ever seen the yellow chicken car that used to be parked in/around Santa Monica?

And do you have any idea what happened to the Carpetieria genie that used to grace the shop near my house in North Hollywood? He was awesome. ;-)

ifthethunderdontgetya™³²®© said...

I'm willing to accept that Chicken Boy is a force for good, based on g's recommendation.

But he still seems a bit scary.
~

M. Bouffant said...

I was at the Future Studio a few wks. ago, right under C. B., & met Amy, who preserved him.

I even remember seeing him in his original location. Came to town in '73, just like the picture.

Which makes me old, though not sad.

Gary's third pottery blog said...

OMIGOSH!