No More 'Lollipops': In 2014, Shirley Temple Phenom Looks More Weird Than Cute

Watching 'On the Good Ship Lollipop' through 21st-century eyes brings on discomfort, not nostalgia.

Chaya Kaye
Chaya Kaye

Eighty years on, Shirley Temple's performance of "On the Good Ship Lollipop" underscores how much times have changed: In this day and age, it's unlikely for a toddler to be filmed wearing a mini dress that barely covers her privates and performing for a gaggle of adult men.

Watching the video through 21st-century eyes doesn't bring on a wave of nostalgia as much as it does discomfort: The cute-as-a-button Temple, who died Monday at age 85, glides down the aisle of a plane seating about a dozen grown men, stopping by each row and giving the performance her all as she sings about candy shops, tootsie rolls and lemonade.

Once the most celebrated Hollywood child star, Temple sings the lines, "On the good ship Lollipop, it's a nice trip into bed you hop, and dream away on the good ship Lollipop," as one man snaps her up and places her on his lap, after which she gets passed around among the group as the song goes on.

Temple got her start in Tinseltown at age 3, starring in dozens of films and winning over fans with her singing, dancing and acting – but she is perhaps most associated with her rendition of "On the Good Ship Lollipop," which she first sang in the 1934 film "Bright Eyes."

Temple said she was about 8 when adoring crowds shouting their love for her made her realize she was famous. "I wondered why," she recalled. "I asked my mother and she said, 'Because your films make them happy.'" That is certainly one way of putting it.

Temple performs 'On the Good Ship Lollipop'Credit: Screenshot from YouTube

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