Adam Finley: The Five: You can't see me
When we limited our lists to just five items, Adam was able to take that format and run with it, coming up with some very creative lists. This one is a good one; he talks about his favorite characters that are never shown on screen. As I went over his posts, I looked at some of the lists he created and thought "I could have never come up with that," which I think is a pretty high compliment.
Originally published on May 24, 2006.
Some of the most memorable characters in television were never actually seen. They were talked about, and their presence, even if it was always offscreen, was often crucial to the plot. I've come up with five awesome (but unseen) TV characters. Here they are:
Vera: From what I recall, Vera, the wife of beer-lover Norm Peterson on Cheers, made only one appearance on the show, and that was just her legs. According to both Wikipedia and IMDb, she was played by George Wendt's real-life wife, Bernadette Birkette.
Maris: When Fraiser spun off from Cheers, they must have liked the idea of an unseen wife, because that's exactly what they gave Fraiser's brother Niles (David Hyde Pierce). There's a great in-joke in the "The Brother from Another Series" episode of The Simpsons in which David Hyde Pierce plays Cecil, the brother of Kelsey Grammer's Sideshow Bob. When Bart leaps on him, covers his eyes, and says, "Guess who?" Cecil replies with, "Maris?"
Carlton the Doorman: This was the first one I thought of. Carlton was the doorman on Rhoda, and while his distinctive voice could always be heard on the intercom, he was never actually seen. He was played by the late Lorenzo Music, who would later become the voice of Garfield.
Scooter's Uncle: Okay, let me preface this by saying that while I was a huge fan of The Muppet Show, it's not as if I have every episode memorized. However, I don't think Scooter's uncle, who owned the theater, ever made an appearance. He was the reason, however, that Kermit sometimes had to unwittingly let Scooter have his way, or risk losing the theater.
Bart Furley: Ralph Furley (the late Don Knotts) knew when to put his foot down as a landlord on Three's Company, but he could also be kind of a pushover. That wasn't the case for his brother Bart though, who seemed to instill a deep fear in his younger, nerdier brother. Bart was never seen, save for one episode, "Furley vs. Furley" when Ralph finally decides to face his brother head on. He was played by actor Hamilton Camp, who passed away last year.
And before anyone says it, yes, I just realized I forgot about Charlie from Charlie's Angels. That's what happens when you limit yourself to only five.
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