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Barbara Eden (1931-2018)...?


Cinemartian
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No Merchandising. Editorial Use Only. No Book Cover Usage.Mandatory Credit: Photo by Moviestore/REX/Shutterstock (1574060a)I Dream Of Jeannie , Hayden Rourke, Larry Hagman, Barbara Eden, Bill DailyFilm and Television
 

Bill Daily, the affable TV actor who starred as Major Roger Healey in “I Dream of Jeannie” as well as on “The Bob Newhart Show,” died Sept. 4 in Santa Fe, N.M., his son J. Patrick Daily confirmed. He was 91.

“He loved every sunset, he loved every meal — he just decided to be happy about everything,” said his son.

The longtime New Mexico resident was a staple on series of the 1960s through 1980s, notably as Bob Newhart’s daffy neighbor, airline pilot Howard Borden, on CBS’ “The Bob Newhart Show” sitcom from 1972 to 1978. In the 1980s, he appeared as psychiatrist Dr. Larry Dykstra on NBC’s “ALF.”

Newhart remembered his co-star from their early days in the Chicago comedy scene in the 1950s.

“I called him our bullpen man. Whenever we were having trouble with a script on the show, we’d have Bill make an appearance,” Newhart said. “In recent years we had hoped to have Bill be a part of ‘The Bob Newhart Show’ tributes at the TV Academy but by then he was no longer traveling. He was one of the most positive people I ever knew and we’ll dearly miss him.”

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1 hour ago, Cinemartian said:

Following a search I am assuming that this is the initial post. She was definitely a big part of entertainment and pop culture, and most importantly a pioneer in TV. There are mixed messages as many places online are not acknowledging the news; so a confirmation would be appropriate. 

I can't find any reports that Eden has passed.   Either way what did she do to be a "a pioneer in TV."? 

 

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1 hour ago, jamesjazzguitar said:

I can't find any reports that Eden has passed.   Either way what did she do to be a "a pioneer in TV."? 

 

She definitely brought a form of characterization to the tube that many have benefitted from. Performance isn't easy especially in that format. Look at all the pathetic attempts at sitcom TV today, awful. It was all over the place that she died last night. Sorry if I took the bait. 

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29 minutes ago, Cinemartian said:

She definitely brought a form of characterization to the tube that many have benefitted from. Performance isn't easy especially in that format. Look at all the pathetic attempts at sitcom TV today, awful. It was all over the place that she died last night. Sorry if I took the bait. 

You believe that the character Jeannie was an enlightened 'form of characterization'?     I have heard that said about Mary Tyler Moore and her sitcom (and I agree),  but the Jeannie character is a throw back type character;  i.e. a female character that exist mostly to show off her sexuality.   

Anyhow, to each his own,  but to me Eden wasn't a very good actress.    

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Just now, jamesjazzguitar said:

New believe that the character Jeannie was an enlightened 'form of characterization'?     I have heard that said about Mary Tyler Moore and her sitcom (and I agree),  but the Jeannie character is a throw back type character;  i.e. a female character that exist mostly to show off her sexuality.   

Anyhow, to each his own,  but to me Eden wasn't a very good actress.    

What'd you think of Liz Montgomery on Bewitched? The ditzy sexuality is a one difficult to pull off in that classic fashion, but yes I agree about the sex symbol. Other note, Agnes Moorehead was a versatile actress. 

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22 minutes ago, Cinemartian said:

What'd you think of Liz Montgomery on Bewitched? The ditzy sexuality is a one difficult to pull off in that classic fashion, but yes I agree about the sex symbol. Other note, Agnes Moorehead was a versatile actress. 

Funny but I was going to mention Montgomery on Bewitched as another female character with special 'powers'.  The character Liz played was fairly conventional but she wasn't as ditzy as Jeannie.   But to me neither character pushed women characters 'forward' in a way that would make them a  "pioneer in TV" like Mary Tyler Moore or say,  Marlo Thomas in That Girl.   

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56 minutes ago, jamesjazzguitar said:

New believe that the character Jeannie was an enlightened 'form of characterization'?     I have heard that said about Mary Tyler Moore and her sitcom (and I agree),  but the Jeannie character is a throw back type character;  i.e. a female character that exist mostly to show off her sexuality.   

Anyhow, to each his own,  but to me Eden wasn't a very good actress.    

Barbara Eden is a wonderful actress. She began her career in the 1950s, which meant she was often typecast as Marilyn Monroe-like characters. She even played the Monroe-ish Loco in the 1958 TV version of "How to Marry a Millionaire," which co-starred Lori Nelson and Merry Anders.

I loved it in 1990 when Eden was reunited with her "I Dream of Jeannie" co-star Larry Hagman on the CBS hit series"Dallas." She played a scheming woman of wealth named Lee Ann De La Vega, who had a score to settle with J.R. Ewing.  

 

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14 minutes ago, Hepburn Fan said:

I could easily watch old TV shows more than old movies. The channels offering classic TV run episodes of the same show over and over. Too bad TCM can't do for old TV what they do for old movies. Yes jakeem, very cool. I loved many of the space TV shows. Guess I'm a sucker for blinking lights, so I must include Batman. Make believe works for me.

I also like "Mission: Impossible," which was years ahead of its time in style and subject matter. And "The Wild, Wild West," which featured James Bond-like adventures in the 1870s. Of course, I love "The Avengers," which was fun and satirical -- and a great introduction to many British actors and actresses.

I still rank "The Dick Van Dyke Show" as my all-time favorite sitcom. 

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1 hour ago, jakeem said:

 

I still rank "The Dick Van Dyke Show" as my all-time favorite sitcom. 

I still wonder who Larry Mathews' parents bribed or blackmailed to get him the part of Ritchie Petrie. He was absolutely the worst child actor in the history of television, maybe the movies too. He would either be whining through his lines or almost  laughing through them. Nothing against Mary Tyler Moore, but she was hardly "pushing women forward" in The Dick Van Dyke Show. Every time she ran up against a difficult situation she would break into "Ooooh Rob!" and start crying. I realize she was just starting out and captive to the producers, and that the producers were captive to the values of the 50s that still permeated the 1960s, but still!

if you want to discuss 60s television, sometime we really MUST discuss human sexuality and the probability that five people with what I imagine were healthy sex drives would remain celibate on Gilligan's Island for years on end. OK, maybe four. Gilligan might have been asexual.

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14 minutes ago, calvinnme said:

I still wonder who Larry Mathews' parents bribed or blackmailed to get him the part of Ritchie Petrie. He was absolutely the worst child actor in the history of television, maybe the movies too.

Perhaps, but Ritchie had the coolest middle name in television history! They even built an entire episode around it.

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Off-Barbara Eden's-alleged-death-topic:

What made Mary Tyler Moore's character of Mary Richards so culturally important was unlike previous female sitcom leads, she not only left home to live on her own in the big city of Minneapolis; she was dedicated to her career and advancing herself, and her main goal in life was not to get married - unlike even her friend and semi-career oriented co-star, Rhoda. Even Marlo Thomas' "That Girl"'s dream sequence in each opening title montage was her in a wedding dress.

Mary was independent, dated a number of men, took The Pill and openly (albeit subtly suggested by the writers) had - GASP! - sex. Shoot, Mary (Richards) dated Walter Cronkite....and....who knows if "that's the way it was" with Walter, too!?

 

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9 hours ago, calvinnme said:

I still wonder who Larry Mathews' parents bribed or blackmailed to get him the part of Ritchie Petrie. He was absolutely the worst child actor in the history of television, maybe the movies too. He would either be whining through his lines or almost  laughing through them.

Reminds of the line from the episode where Rob tries to get Ritchie and next-door Millie's son to play "real kids" in front of a Little League baseball wall for a commercial on the Alan Brady Show:
Laura:  "You mean Ritchie can't act?"  Rob: "Well, with a week of coaching, he could probably play the wall..."

13 hours ago, calvinnme said:

Are you sure you didn't mean this?

The longtime New Mexico resident was a staple on series of the 1960s through 1980s, notably as Bob Newhart’s daffy neighbor, airline pilot Howard Borden, on CBS’ “The Bob Newhart Show” sitcom from 1972 to 1978.

“I called him our bullpen man. Whenever we were having trouble with a script on the show, we’d have Bill make an appearance,” Newhart said. “In recent years we had hoped to have Bill be a part of ‘The Bob Newhart Show’ tributes at the TV Academy but by then he was no longer traveling. He was one of the most positive people I ever knew and we’ll dearly miss him.”

Keep your Cosmo Kramer, Howard Borden was THE definitive lovable-dim sidekick:

"Say, Bob, have you seen my son?  He was supposed to be playing hide-and-seek in your bedroom, but I can't find him anywhere."

"Did you look under the giggling pile of coats on the bed?"
"...Ohh, so THAT'S why they were giggling!"  (exits)

10 hours ago, jakeem said:

Barbara Eden is a wonderful actress. She began her career in the 1950s, which meant she was often typecast as Marilyn Monroe-like characters. She even played the Monroe-ish Loco in the 1958 TV version of "How to Marry a Millionaire," which co-starred Lori Nelson and Merry Anders.

Although she did graduate to similar sweet-unspoken romantic leads for George Pal, in "7 Faces of Dr. Lao", and "Wonderful World of the Brothers Grimm".

wonderful-world-grimm-1962-sexy-barbara-

But, since we know she was alive as of last Tuesday (and that Dick Clark would have killed to get whatever Eternal Youth formula she's still using), any use of the past tense refers to the film roles.

10 hours ago, Hepburn Fan said:

A lot of TV from the 1960s was pretty corny. I do mean a lot.

And some of it was flat-out brilliant.  (And by "some", I mean Dick Van Dyke, the first three seasons of The Flintstones, and, of course, The Addams Family...Three sitcoms whose humor was at least ten years ahead of their time.)

I Dream of Jeannie was not prime scriptwriting by 60's standards, but the characters had fun.

I tried going back through the series again, and only those versed in classic Japanese anime will know why I laughed myself silly watching Eden's dangerously and impulsively force-of-nature optimistic Jeannie constantly pursuing her Darling Master, and sabotaging his NASA-bachelor dates with other girls.  :D

11 hours ago, jamesjazzguitar said:

You believe that the character Jeannie was an enlightened 'form of characterization'?     I have heard that said about Mary Tyler Moore and her sitcom (and I agree),  but the Jeannie character is a throw back type character;  i.e. a female character that exist mostly to show off her sexuality.   

Anyone who thinks Jeannie was a "male chauvinistic control fantasy" has very likely never watched the series in his life.  ?

A good episode to start with, to sum up the basic idea, is "How to Be a Genie in Ten Easy Lessons", from season 2:  Where Tony sighs, "Why can't I have a normal genie like Aladdin got?", and buddy Roger (the late Mr. Daily) jokes, "Well, maybe she never read that story."  Tony realizes maybe she hasn't, buys a copy of Arabian Nights, and tells Jeannie to read the book while he's at work and study up on "how a genie is supposed to act".  Unfortunately, Jeannie doesn't first open the book to Aladdin, she happens to open it to the story of the angry genie let out of the bottle:  "'And the djinn said, 'Why, in my anger, I would--'...(continues to read with horror)...Oh, I could NEVER do such things!"

So, when Maj. Nelson comes home, and insists that Jeannie act "straight out of the book", Jeannie reluctantly agrees, and has him chained over a pit of crocodiles.

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Archie and Mary did indeed change the nature of the situation comedy, and should be applauded for dealing with the modern world. I enjoyed those shows, but I felt that, in dealing with those new subjects, they tended to embrace a kind of cutsiness by way of compromise.

I've always preferred Burns and Allen, I Love Lucy, The Honeymooners, et. al., which in their own surreal and comic ways, dealt, through comedy, with serious issues as well.

Actually, just the other day I was glimpsing scenes from My Friend Irma and Meet Millie on YouTube.

 

 

Alice.jpg

 

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4 minutes ago, Swithin said:

Archie and Mary did indeed change the nature of the situation comedy, and should be applauded for dealing with the modern world. I enjoyed those shows, but I felt that, in dealing with those new subjects, they tended to embrace a kind of cutsiness by way of compromise.

I've always preferred Burns and Allen, I Love Lucy, The Honeymooners, et. al., which in their own surreal and comic ways, dealt, through comedy, with serious issues as well.

Maybe it was just me, but I always thought that Archie Bunker was a bigoted version of Ralph Kramden.

Image result for archie bunker and ralph kramden

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11 minutes ago, jakeem said:

Maybe it was just me, but I always thought that Archie Bunker was a bigoted version of Ralph Kramden.

Image result for archie bunker and ralph kramden

Absolutely, Kramden was the forerunner. Those blue collar New Yorkers morphed. Politically, they were part of the FDR coalition at one time, and now...

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