"A super silly way to fill in the _________!" by Roger Price & Leonard Stern graced the bottom of each Mad Libs, which emerged in 1958. At that point Stern was already a successful writer on 'The Honeymooners,' starring Jackie Gleason.
He began his writing career in film in the early 1950s, but moved on to television. He won an Emmy as part of the writing team for 'The Phil Silvers Show' and another for an episode of 'Get Smart,' in which he acted as executive producer for its entire 1965-1969 run.
Today we celebrate National Good Neighbor Day by thanking those who live around us who watch our kids when we're sick, let us borrow the chainsaw to cut down that dead oak in the front yard, lend us money and comfort when times are bleak and look the other way when they saw our wives kissing the mailman right on the mouth (to keep the marriage strife-free, of course).
The 'Entourage' pals are back with their seventh season, and the 'My Boys' friends kicked off season 4 recently, which got us to thinking about our other favorite TV friendships.
Whether it's the duo who inspired 'Guy Love' and the other guy pair who would be quick to point out that there's nothing wrong with that or the Milwaukee ladies who schlemiel-ed and schlimazel-ed their way to making their dreams come true and the Miami foursome who proved friendship (and feistiness) is even more important in your 'Golden' years, these are the 20 TV BFFs we'd be happy to call friends.
I do like the retro design of the stamps and how each looks like an old picture tube. I see a lot of familiar faces in there, including Phil Silvers, Howdy Doody, Rod Serling, Alfred Hitchcock, The Honeymooners, I Love Lucy and many others. Did they miss anybody?
I think the Postal Service isn't going far enough with this. They should release stamps commemorating television shows for each year, or perhaps more appropriately each television era. For the 70's they could include M*A*S*H and All In The Family. For the 80's they could include Knight Rider and The A Team. At least, they would be included if I designed the stamps.
They've been working on a script since 2004, but they are saying now that The Munsters movie is nearly ready to roll. I know, I know, how many times have we seen beloved TV series turned into horrible features? For every good one -- The Brady Bunch -- there's a lemon like Leave It to Beaver. The Wayans Brothers clearly believe that they have the goods to make The Munsters like the former rather than the latter.
However, I have to worry about how well they know the material when Shawn Wayans says, "Their characters are still who they were in the '50s. It's just in modern day." Umm, excuse me -- the '50s? The Munsters premiered in 1964 and ran till 1966; it was set in present day. Didn't the Wayanses notice that?
Hmmm, a bunch of "Best Of" sets are being released this week. I've never liked this idea (most of these sets don't have episodes that I'd like to see, and I'd like a complete collection), though I guess I can understand why they release them. They want to see if fans are interested and aren't sure if it warrants a whole season being released. Though I'm not sure why shows like Banacek and B.L. Stryker are getting "Best Of" sets since they have already had season sets released.
- B.L. Stryker - Best Of
- Banacek - Best Of
- Beany & Cecil - Classic Collection, Volumes 1 and 2
- Charles in Charge - Best Of
- The Crow: Stairway to Heaven - Best Of
- Curious George - Sails with Pirates and Other Curious Capers
- Death Note - Vol. 6
- Dirty Jobs - Collection 3
- Entourage - Season 4
- Everybody Hates Chris - Season 3
- Fat Albert and the Cosby Kids - Halloween
- The Golden Age of Comedy
- Heroes - Season 2
- The Honeymooners - Color, Collection 4
- NCIS - Season 5 and Seasons 1-5 sets
- One Tree Hill - Season 5
- Robson Arms - Season 3
- The Shield - Season 6
- Shockwave - Season 1
- The Untouchables - Season 2, Vol. 2
Whew, after all that, here, in alphabetical order, are the ten I love -- within my own parameters! Feel free to comment with your choices, if your favorite isn't on my list.
I'm sure there are a lot of TV fans out there who really don't know Gleason or his work, or if they do know it, it's from his work on The Honeymooners. They don't remember the other TV shows he had (which aren't usually shown anymore) or his work in films like The Hustler, Gigot, and Requiem For A Heavyweight (OK, maybe they're familiar with Smokey and the Bandit). Nor are they aware of his innovative sitcom filming techniques, using multiple cameras to film the show for videotape.
Today is Jackie Gleason's birthday (he was born in 1916), and there's a new official web site up at JackieGleason.com, and it's quite good. Not only do you get pictures and an in-depth career timeline and forums, there are also various video clips to watch, including Gleason as characters such as Joe The Bartender, The Poor Soul, Rum Dum, and, of course, Ralph Kramden.
YouTube also has some classic Gleason clips. After the jump, Ed Norton trying to teach Ralph how to play golf.