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Multiple Years / Our Gang - Darla Hood
Darla Hood was the most famous of the Our Gang girls. Born in Oklahoma in 1931, Darla began auditioning for roles at age three. At age four she joined the Our Gang troupe, debuting in 'Our Gang Follies of 1936.' Darla's Oklahoma twang is noticeable in some of her early films. Darla's stint with the Our Gang series came during its heyday. Her character was both wholesome and coquettish. Alfalfa, Waldo, and Butch all vied for the pretty brunette's affections. She made the transition from the Hal Roach era of Our Gang to the MGM era. Her last Our Gang appearance came at age 11 in 'Benjamin Franklin Jr.' in 1943. Darla became a regular member of The Ken Murray Show during the 1950-51 TV season. She later reprised her Darla role in a spoof on a 1962 episode of The Jack Benny Program. (Jack played Alfalfa.) During the 1960s and 1970s she attended numerous cast reunions where she was a great favorite of young and old fans. In 1979 Darla was busy planning a 1980 Our Gang reunion when she entered the hospital for a minor surgical procedure. She contracted hepatitis--likely from a tainted blood transfusion--and died suddenly. She was just 47 years old.