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April 23, 2014

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The oddest thing you'll hear today: Jack Klugman and Tony Randall sing "You're So Vain"

by Bob Sassone, posted Sep 24th 2009 8:11PM
The 70s were a crazy time. A lot of TV and movie stars cut record albums for some reason. Not that celebrities singing isn't something that still goes on today, but back then they would often sing as their characters or in the tone of their characters.

Like The Odd Couple's Jack Klugman and Tony Randall singing (and arguing as Oscar and Felix) "You're So Vain." Most of it is sung by Klugman, and it's truly bizarre.

[via Bill Corbett]

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Quincy, M.E. has yet to make money

by Brad Trechak, posted Aug 25th 2009 11:03AM
Quincy, M.E.While he'll always be known to me as Oscar Madison on The Odd Couple, television audiences also know Jack Klugman from his 1976 to 1983 series Quincy, M.E. (The M.E. stands for "Medical Examiner," just so you know.) Well, he's now suing over lost profits from that television show (and not for the first time either).

A lesson that has long been learned in television negotiation is that you never take profit shares from the net of any show or movie. The magic of Hollywood accounting can have that piece of programming in debt for centuries. I think Gone With The Wind has yet to make a profit. If you are ever negotiating salary, make sure it's a percentage of the gross profits, not net.

Not that any of this wisdom helps Jack Klugman at the moment. Hopefully his case can bring to light some of the insidious accounting practices in the entertainment industry, but I'm not holding my breath.

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Modern-day Felix Ungers: Seven TV neat-freaks - VIDEOS

by Allison Waldman, posted Dec 16th 2008 3:02PM
Tony RandallDo you think when Neil Simon created the character of Felix Unger in The Odd Couple he knew that he was spawning a generation or two (maybe more) of Felix Unger wannabes? Today, over 40 years since Felix became part of our movie/TV collective conscience, there are lots of people and characters that bring to mind Tony Randall's alter ego.

It's Tony's Felix that I think is etched in our minds. He made Felix all he could be, and week in and week out -- opposite Jack Klugman's Oscar Madison -- he typified the ultimate neat freak, persnickety, hypochondriacally, impossible-to-live-with, supercilious know-it-all that made us cackle with laughter.

So, as I was watching TV -- an occupational requirement -- recently, it occurred to me that there are quite a few Felix Ungers on screen right now. Most are fictional, like Two and a Half Men's Alan Harper and, most obviously, Adrian Monk. But there are a couple of Felixes in real life on TV, too, like MSNBC's Keith Olbermann and ESPN's Mike Greenberg.

By my count, there are seven "Felix Ungers" currently on TV.

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The Odd Couple: Password - VIDEO

by Bob Sassone, posted May 29th 2008 6:05PM

(Originally aired Dec. 1, 1972)

Since CBS will debut a new, updated version of the classic game show Password this Sunday at 8, I thought it would be a good idea to talk about one of the great episodes of The Odd Couple, appropriately titled "Password." (it's also Jack Klugman's favorite). It's the one where Oscar is asked to go on the game show and he gets to choose his partner. Will he choose Felix, a nut for the show, or his girlfriend, who isn't too, um, bright? The answer after the jump...

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Jack Klugman sues NBC over Quincy profits

by Allison Waldman, posted Mar 29th 2008 9:41AM
Jack KlugmanThis is a very odd story, and not because it involves one-half of TV's most enjoyable sitcoms ever, The Odd Couple, but it's not about that show. It's about his other successful series. Jack Klugman has filed suit against NBC Universal over profits from Quincy, M.E. The oddity is that the show hasn't been in production for 25 years and this hasn't come up till now!

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TCM is letting celebrities pick the movies in November

by Bob Sassone, posted Nov 3rd 2007 10:36AM

Martha StewartWe first told you about this back in August, and now the complete list is out: Turner Classic Movies is letting celebrities program the network for the month of November. Each celeb is picking three or four films, and here are a few of the more interesting choices (it started Thursday with Alfred Molina's picks).

Whoopi Goldberg likes A Face in the Crowd and Funny Girl. Jerry Stiller likes A Night At The Opera. Kermit The Frog loves dancing to Singin' In The Rain and The Band Wagon. Martha Stewart would probably have some decorating ideas as Mr. Blandings Builds His Dream House.

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Brett Somers dead at 83

by Bob Sassone, posted Sep 17th 2007 3:36PM

Brett SomersVeteran Match Game panelist Brett Somers has died at age the age of 83.

I was going to say that Somers "was" married to Jack Klugman, but an interesting fact: even though they separated in 1974, while The Odd Couple was on the air, they never divorced! Somers played Klugman's ex-wife on the show.

Besides her many game show appearances, Somers also guest starred on The Love Boat, The Mary Tyler Moore Show, Love, American Style, Barney Miller, Battlestar Galactica (the original), The F.B.I., The Defenders, Ben Casey, Naked City, and many other shows.

Somers died of cancer in Westport, CT on Saturday. Her co-star Charles Nelson Reilly died earlier this year.

Update: GSN is having a marathon this Saturday from 9am to 4pm, featuring Somers' Match Game appearances and a Password where she guested with Jack Klugman.

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The Odd Couple, Season 2 - DVD review

by Bob Sassone, posted Sep 1st 2007 2:03PM
Odd Couple season 2The first thing I noticed about this DVD is that on the back it says in fine print that the music has been altered for the release, and I got a little apprehensive after the whole WKRP In Cincinnati fiasco. But looking over the episodes I can't find any music replaced or any weird edits to the music that would then make a scene oddly edited. So I would buy this and not even worry about anything missing.

But there are a few things missing extras-wise, but we'll get to that in a minute. Overall, how is the second season set of The Odd Couple? Click on the link below for a look.

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Celebrities pick their favorite movies for TCM

by Bob Sassone, posted Aug 29th 2007 2:19PM

Martha StewartTurner Classic Movies has asked several well-known celebrities to pick their favorite movies, which will be shown every night throughout November, and I have to say I'm very impressed with their picks.

Some of the choices fit the celeb. For example, Martha Stewart picked Enchanted April, Madame Bovary, Mr. Blandings Builds His Dream House, and Anna Karenina, which you can imagine Martha watching at home, a bowl of popcorn in her lap (and critiquing the job Mr. Blandings did), and James Ellroy's picks (Stakeout On Dope Street, The Lineup, Armored Car Robbery, and Murder By Contract) stay along the lines of his noir/mystery background. But a few picks are interesting. Access Hollywood co-host Maria Menounos picked the 1932 cult classic Freaks, and Food Network icon Alton Brown picked the Lee Marvin classic Point Blank. As for non-human celebs, Kermit The Frog picked Singin' in the Rain and The Band Wagon.

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Rod Serling's The Velvet Alley - VIDEO

by Bob Sassone, posted Aug 12th 2007 3:00PM

Serling and Playhouse 90 producer Martin ManulisI've been looking for a copy of this Playhouse 90 episode for years. VHS, DVD, some guy doing a puppet show version of it in his living room, whatever, I've really wanted to see it since seeing snippets of it on the excellent PBS American Masters episode "Submitted For Your Approval" (it's on one of the Twilight Zone DVDs). And now, thanks to YouTube, we can all watch it.

Well, most of it anyway. After the jump, I posted the opening of the show (complete with intros and commercials!), and then if you follow this link you can find other segments of the show (on the right), but I have no idea what order they go in because they aren't labeled. It's well worth watching though. I mean, look at the cast: Art Carney, Jack Klugman, Leslie Nielsen, Burt Reynolds, and the kid is Mickey Dolenz from The Monkees! They don't do TV like this anymore.

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The five greatest TV police detectives

by Bob Sassone, posted Mar 27th 2007 3:27PM
Peter FalkWelcome to TV Squad Lists (formerly 'The Five'), a feature where each blogger has a chance to list his or her own rundown of things in television that stand out from the rest, both good and bad.

Ah, the police detective genre. It's one of the staples of a network's TV lineup. We all have our favorites, whether the characters are in blue uniforms or suits. Here are my Top 5 (and just so we're clear, I'm talking about police detectives, not private eyes or amateur investigators. I'll have that list tomorrow!)

1. Lt. Columbo (Peter Falk): No contest, really. Sure, there are some other great cops and detectives, but not many with the sheer Sherlock Holmes-like smarts as Lt. Columbo. He walked around sorta lost and bumbling, with a constantly lit cigar, a rumpled raincoat, and hair that made it look like he just woke up. But he was no fool, which all the murderers found out a little bit too late.

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The Five: TV movies they don't show anymore

by Bob Sassone, posted Jan 29th 2007 1:30PM
James Franciscus

You don't see as many made-for-TV movies today as you used to. Sure, Lifetime does some and you'll find some on cable and the odd one on CBS, but the networks don't really do them anymore (and if they do they stretch them to two or more nights and call them a mini-series). But you could see them all the time in the 60s, 70s, and 80s. Here are five they hardly show anymore, if ever, but I remember them fondly.

1. One Of My Wives Is Missing (1976): Mystery about a man who reports his wife missing, then a woman shows up claiming to be his wife and he says she isn't. Stars Jack Klugman, Elizabeth Ashley, and James Franciscus. I pride myself in being able to figure out the shocking endings and plot twists that so many movies have (that's what happens when you watch so much TV, not much surprises you anymore), but this movie completely blew me away. It doesn't just have a twist ending, it has about three, and you just smile at the end because it's so clever, and you try to think back to everything that happened to see if they played fair. I haven't seen this movie in about 15 years. It's not on DVD and I can't remember the last time someone ran it. (It was remade years later with a different title, but it wasn't as good.)

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Odd Couple season one coming to DVD - again

by Bob Sassone, posted Dec 24th 2006 8:10PM

Odd CoupleHere's an odd little tidbit I didn't know. The first season of The Odd Couple that was released earlier this year was not released by Paramount. It was actually released by Time-Life (they also did that cool Get Smart set). But now the first season is going to be released again.

Paramount has announced that they too will release the first season of the show on April 24. TVShowsonDVD says that the set will probably be the exact same set as the one released by Time-Life, but there's no official word on it yet.

I'm still waiting for season two to be released! As I've said before, the first season of the show is rather lackluster to me. It's not that funny, and it has a different apartment set and wasn't filmed in front of a live audience. The later seasons are much better, as I think any fan or even crew member on the show would tell you.

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Happy Odd Couple Day!

by Bob Sassone, posted Nov 13th 2006 2:20PM

Klugman and Randall"On November 13, Felix Unger was asked to remove himself from his place of residence. That request came from his wife."

Happy Odd Couple Day! Today's the day Odd Couple fans can celebrate the 70s ABC sitcom. How to celebrate? Maybe if you're a really messy guy you can clean the entire apartment today. Vacuum all the rugs, scrub the shower, clean out the fridge and throw away all the old food. And if you're a really neat guy, maybe you can walk around in an old shirt, go one day without sweeping the kitchen floor, or drink beer and leave the cans on the coffee table.

The Odd Couple is one of the best sitcoms of all-time. Smart, well-written, great cast. Except for that odd first season where they had that different apartment and used more cameras and didn't have a studio audience. But after that it took off. Hey, is it even being shown anywhere nowadays? I'd love to watch it again.

[via TV Tattle]

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DVD Review: Twilight Zone Complete Definitive Collection

by Bob Sassone, posted Oct 4th 2006 4:00PM
Twilight Zone DVD setThere have already been so many Twilight Zone sets released already that even hardcore fans might be wondering if they should spend the money on yet another set. Is it really presented in a different way, packaged differently, and have enough extras to buy it?

The answer is a definite yes. This is one of the best TV DVD sets I've ever seen, and an absolute must for diehard fans of Rod Serling's classic show.

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