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The last Greatest Event in Television History. We mean it.
January 25, 2014 6:14 AM   Subscribe

First we had Simon & Simon, Hart to Hart, then Too Close for Comfort (!!), and finally, Bosom Buddies.
posted by Kitteh (60 comments total) 25 users marked this as a favorite

 
I miss TV show theme songs.
posted by symbioid at 7:06 AM on January 25 [3 favorites]


Mike Post for instrumentals, Alan Thicke for sitcom jingles. Sigh.
posted by linux at 7:12 AM on January 25 [2 favorites]


The full Bosom Buddies episode, with cameos by Hanks, Scolari, and Billy Joel
posted by gimli at 7:58 AM on January 25 [4 favorites]


I propose a meetup for a rendition of the Madame's Place opening.
posted by sonascope at 8:08 AM on January 25 [6 favorites]


Adam Scott nails the mind-bending awkwardness of the 'Monroe sitting in a chair looking sad' version of the 'Too Close...' credit sequence SO HARD. It's just amazing. These are wonderful.
posted by mintcake! at 8:16 AM on January 25 [8 favorites]


And when we're warmed up, full episodes of Space Academy and its adventurous spin-off.

Mind you, if we do Space: 1999, I've got dibs on Barbara Bain. I'm very good at acting as if I've overdosed on Botox and have no articulating neck bones, so I have to turn my whole body every time I want to look at something. Also, if [1980] we do UFO [1980] I want [UFO] to wear a [1980] mesh shirt and [UFO] hurl myself [SHADO] into a tube of [SHADO] some sort.
posted by sonascope at 8:18 AM on January 25 [7 favorites]


...is there where I admit that as a small child, Too Close For Comfort and Three's Company were my favorite tv shows?

I maintain that the first few seasons of Three's Company were awesome.

I'd like to think my taste has matured since then. Maybe.
posted by sara is disenchanted at 8:19 AM on January 25 [1 favorite]


They'll never come close to this.
posted by timsteil at 8:26 AM on January 25 [2 favorites]


I propose a meetup for a rendition of the Madame's Place opening.

FELDMAN ALERT LEVEL RED. Also: the bass part in that theme song is 100% killer disco freshness. Wow.
posted by mintcake! at 8:27 AM on January 25 [1 favorite]


The Bosom Buddies episode was genius. Pissed off Tom Hanks FTW!
posted by vibrotronica at 8:29 AM on January 25 [3 favorites]


Adam Scott nails the mind-bending awkwardness of the 'Monroe sitting in a chair looking sad' version of the 'Too Close...' credit sequence SO HARD.

I cannot help but watch that and hope that Adam Scott would tackle the most very special episode of Too Close For Comfort ever, despite all the wrongness that would be in play.
posted by sonascope at 8:32 AM on January 25 [4 favorites]


I was super into this show for a little while because I expected to grow up to be a comic book artist (nope) and Henry was as close as any TV show got back then.
posted by SharkParty at 8:36 AM on January 25 [2 favorites]


The Monroe assault episode is even more horrifying than you expect it to be. It's insane.
posted by mintcake! at 8:45 AM on January 25 [3 favorites]


Neat. Props for getting the car and the bus for the parking meter suntan in the Bosom Buddies one.
posted by cashman at 8:46 AM on January 25 [1 favorite]


A few nitpicks. One, they don't refer to Paul Rudd being the original director of the Simon and Simon remake until he quit the project. No Paul Scheer. No World's Tallest (Something) to say "No." and no side by side comparisons in the end credits.

But I loved it. I love all of these.
posted by inturnaround at 8:55 AM on January 25 [1 favorite]


I'm always surprised by how borderline-annoyed I am at the prologue to these credit sequence, and then doubly surprised by my transports of delight at the credits sequences themselves. I think I clapped at the "Bosom Buddies" episode; I know I kept gasping "ohmygod... ohmygod" under my breath.
posted by Elsa at 9:08 AM on January 25


I think America is ready for a Bosom Buddies reboot.
posted by Nelson at 9:09 AM on January 25


I'm always surprised by how borderline-annoyed I am at the prologue to these credit sequence, and then doubly surprised by my transports of delight at the credits sequences themselves. I think I clapped at the "Bosom Buddies" episode; I know I kept gasping "ohmygod... ohmygod" under my breath.

And apparently this is my reaction to seeing Gillian Jacobs in absolutely anything. (The good part. Not the annoyance.)
posted by Navelgazer at 9:16 AM on January 25 [1 favorite]


I don't
What is this
I'm
My childhood
Oh goodness
Thank you Metafilter
posted by Big_B at 9:29 AM on January 25


My very special wish list:
  • Very special episode of Diff'rent Strokes that has Megan Mulally as Nancy Reagan telling the boys, played somehow by Keegan and Peele, to Just Say No. Adam Scott as Mr. Drummond.
  • Very special episode of Facts of Life that tackles drunk driving, in which Aidy Bryant as Natalie complains repeatedly about how her knee won't stop shaking. Adam Scott as Mrs. Garrett. Sarah Silverman as Jo. Gillian Jacobs as Blair.
posted by mcstayinskool at 9:30 AM on January 25 [6 favorites]


Any details on how these were made? Really great reproductions of some of the shots.
posted by OwlBoy at 9:34 AM on January 25


I LOVED Bosom Buddies during its original airing. (Give me a break. I was 8 years old.)
posted by mudpuppie at 9:37 AM on January 25


Any details on how these were made? Really great reproductions of some of the shots.

Well, for the Bosom Buddies one, Paul Rudd moved in with Adam Scott and immersed himself in the character as if he was really from the '80s. At one point he didn't even recognize an iPhone and threw it on the ground in terror!
posted by mokin at 9:38 AM on January 25 [6 favorites]


55 second mark: Adam Scott fails re-enactment by being noticeably pastier and doughier than Peter Scolari.

Also Rudd's Hanks' fro is a little nutty.
posted by dgaicun at 9:40 AM on January 25


No World's Tallest (Something) to say "No."

How the heck did you miss the world's tallest streaker?
posted by schoolgirl report at 10:00 AM on January 25 [4 favorites]


Seriously, how has Paul Rudd not aged at all? If they did a Clueless reboot today, I'm pretty sure he could play the same role he did in the original and no one would notice.
posted by bluecore at 10:34 AM on January 25 [5 favorites]


I LOVED Bosom Buddies during its original airing.

OH YES me too. (I was, like, ten.) My best friend and I watched and dissected every episode with a weird intensity, and sometime in the second season, we sat down and carefully composed a fan letter to Tom Hanks and Peter Scolari. (We were kids and didn't have much sense that maybe these young actors had little input into the show's content; though even then, I wanted to be a writer, I can't remember whether we ever considered writing to the writers or producers.)

In it, we first emphasized how much we enjoyed and appreciated their performances and the writing (I KNOW), then as diplomatically as ten-year-olds can outlined some problems we had with what we described, I'm afraid, as "the show's decline in quality."

A few months later, "Bosom Buddies" was cancelled.

And about six months after that, a postcard arrived at my house. On one side was a picture of Tom Hanks, one knee bent to press a foot puckingly against the brick wall against which he leaned, his hair ruffled and sun-lit, his faded jeans casually rumpled, a playful smile on his young face.

On the other side was a handwritten message thanking us for our praise and our criticism, ending with (and I'll reproduce these words as closely as I can) "based on the results, obviously you were right. love, Tom Hanks."
posted by Elsa at 10:42 AM on January 25 [55 favorites]


"puckingly"? What has happened to my brain? I suppose I meant "puckishly" but what does that mean in this context I don't even
posted by Elsa at 10:54 AM on January 25 [1 favorite]


I think America is ready for a Bosom Buddies reboot.

How would that work these days though? Are there still gender-segregated apartment buildings? Or would the reboot take place in 1980?
posted by Ray Walston, Luck Dragon at 10:56 AM on January 25


It should take place in 1968 in The Barbizon, where Bethany Van Nuys lives. Anna Camp can play the Donna Dixon role. As the show progresses, she will eventually turn into Lilly Sinclair (the Lucille Benson role on "Bosom Buddies"), the aged proprietor with the saucy stories.
posted by Elsa at 11:02 AM on January 25 [2 favorites]


I think too much about "Mad Men" and "Bosom Buddies," don't I? It's okay, you can be frank.
posted by Elsa at 11:03 AM on January 25


I had forgotten how, uh, ripped Scolari was in those days. I had such a crush. I'm not sure I ever forgave Hanks for becoming The Famous One afterwards.
posted by emjaybee at 11:10 AM on January 25 [2 favorites]


emjaybee, are you watching "Girls"? With a total lack of irony or pretense, I will say: Scolari is killing it in his occasional appearances as Hannah's dad.
posted by Elsa at 11:12 AM on January 25 [1 favorite]


sonascope: "I propose a meetup for a rendition of the Madame's Place opening."

What. The Hell. Did I just watch?
posted by symbioid at 11:37 AM on January 25 [2 favorites]


mudpuppie: "I LOVED Bosom Buddies during its original airing. (Give me a break. I was 8 years old.)"

No no no... Gimme a break was a different show.
posted by symbioid at 11:40 AM on January 25 [1 favorite]


Jesus, I haven't watched that opening in decades.

Two things jump out. Okay, three.

-How much cocaine was involved with getting Billy Joel to do the music? Good luck with that these days. Oh, wait...

-Wow, Peter Scolari was ripped.

-Still have that crush on Wendy Jo Sperber.
posted by Sphinx at 11:51 AM on January 25 [2 favorites]


Sonny Sonny Sonny

I don't know why, but I still say that whenever I meet or read about someone named Sonny.
posted by Ber at 12:02 PM on January 25


Bosom Buddies was one of those lame high-concept shows that would have made me gasp something like "fuck, no!" (I was not just ten) and quickly change the channel, so I didn't realize until now that Tom Hanks was ever in a TV show.
posted by pracowity at 12:09 PM on January 25


I have to say, Paul Rudd really captured the gangly, herky jerky, puppet like nature of Tom Hanks' running and other attempts at "athleticism."
posted by Saxon Kane at 12:26 PM on January 25 [3 favorites]


so I didn't realize until now that Tom Hanks was ever in a TV show.

Then you may've missed Hanks' early dramatic turn as Uncle Ned, the vanilla extract-swilling alcoholic on a very special episode of Ronald Reagan's favorite show, Family Ties.
posted by item at 12:28 PM on January 25 [7 favorites]


Family Ties.

Another show I would quickly flip past. I guess there weren't many I would watch, come to think of it.
posted by pracowity at 1:07 PM on January 25


Should contain a trigger warning. Just kidding. Mostly.
posted by digitalprimate at 1:37 PM on January 25


I know the S&S one is old hat, now, but MAN, I slobberingly love love LOVED that show as a kid, and just hearing the theme music again makes the hairs on my arms stand on end.

that one, and Matt Houston, with Pamela Hensley / princess Ardala as the lovely CJ. Had my nascent hormoney things all jiggered up, I tell you what
posted by hearthpig at 1:48 PM on January 25 [1 favorite]


so I didn't realize until now that Tom Hanks was ever in a TV show.

Are you familiar with his early made-for-TV movie career?
posted by Nelson at 2:17 PM on January 25


Sadface! Wendie Jo Sperber died of breast cancer in 2005. She was one of the first large women on television allowed to be sexy, and will be missed.
posted by mediocre at 2:27 PM on January 25 [3 favorites]


Would so watch the entire series of Bosom Buddies re shot with the original scripts and production design/costumes starring this cast.
posted by Sara C. at 2:33 PM on January 25 [1 favorite]


emjaybee, are you watching "Girls"? With a total lack of irony or pretense, I will say: Scolari is killing it in his occasional appearances as Hannah's dad.

I am not and did not know he was on it! He was pretty good in Newhart but didn't get enough to do, and that's the last time I saw him in anything.
posted by emjaybee at 3:08 PM on January 25


I am not and did not know he was on it!

Oh boy! He's only in a half-dozen episodes so far, starting with the very first, but when he and Hannah's mother (played by Becky Ann Baker of "Freaks & Geeks" fame, also well-remembered for a small role in A Simple Plan) show up, they're fantastic. They just feel so real to me.
posted by Elsa at 3:37 PM on January 25


I only just realized yesterday that Adam Scott is part Italian (mother's maiden name was Quartara, so possibly even Sicilian) -- explains his looks a lot. I've been catching up, following running out of Party Down to watch, with his indie career -- The Vicious Ones is definitely another side of him, although Bachelorette has he and Lizzy Caplan almost perfectly reprising Henry and Casey.

I confess to have partly hated Paul Rudd ever since practically heaving celluloid after watching The Shape of Things (which wasn't at all his fault, it's a misogynist polemic along the lines of Oleanna). But I've really liked some of his recent work, such as in P&R, Admission, Prince Avalanche, and Our Idiot Brother.

Anyway, somewhere this was called the last Greatest Event in Television History (which I only recently realized can have a double meaning!), and I hope that's just more fake in-narrative hype, because these have all been very decent television-that-you-mostly-watch-on-your-computer. Even though, of all of them, Simon & Simon was the only actual original series that I would watch more than grudgingly (in the case of TCFC, with a gun to my head).
posted by dhartung at 3:40 PM on January 25


dhartung, I only hope you've caught up on Burning Love.
posted by Navelgazer at 3:45 PM on January 25


Oh come on, Hart to Hart has its moments.
posted by maledictory at 4:06 PM on January 25 [1 favorite]


This was adorable. I'm going to have to catch up on Parks and Recreation somehow.

Bosom Buddies was on around the time I started watching less TV, but I do remember this show (TV's sort of blur from age 10-21, save for Monty Python reruns, Doctor Who, MTV and the Eddie Murphy era of SNL). Don't you love those palm trees in Central Park? I love the little slip-ups that give away it's really L.A.

And this show could be remade; there is a residential hotel that is still restricted to women in New York City on the far West Side of 34th Street, the Webster Apartments. Single rooms with two meals a day for working women and students, with a common eating area, a garden, a rooftop garden - and no men allowed above the parlor floor. And, yes, it's pretty darn cheap given its location in Manhattan. There are no $1300/mo. studios left in Manhattan, and hardly any even in the boroughs, I can tell you. When I moved to NYC 20 years ago, I almost took a room there because it was so cheap and centrally located, but the idea of living in what would be basically a dorm again put me off.
posted by droplet at 4:41 PM on January 25


These were all around when I was in high school. Very familiar to me.

The Too Close for Comfort titles caused me to remember that I had a crush on Deborah Van Valkenburgh (not Lydia Cornell) and so I looked up her IMDB entry.

I have no idea why I watched Hart to Hart, but I did. And Simon and Simon. That was the better show of the two.

And Bosom Buddies was actually pretty good but, like emjaybee, Peter Scolari was my favorite and I was really sad that he wasn't as successful as Hanks. But I liked Hanks, too, and does anyone remember how disappointing Bachelor Party was? I'd thought that it came out before Splash, but IMDB says that's not the case. What I remember were people who were fans of Bosom Buddies and of Hanks being excited about Bachelor Party and then being really unhappy with the film.

I didn't watch the Simon and Simon episode of The Greatest Event in Television History, but I watched the rest of them. I think that the Too Close for Comfort one was the best.

I can't imagine Bosom Buddies being remade without being very offensive. It was offensive in its gender stereotypes then.
posted by Ivan Fyodorovich at 8:20 PM on January 25


Bachelor Party was a terrible movie somewhat redeemed by Hanks's performance. He really sells the potato salad gag, for example.
posted by Chrysostom at 10:06 PM on January 25


It's interesting to watch some of those shows that, in conception, had a queer element that was sanitized out by the standards departments before they made it into production. Monroe was meant to be gay, was written gay, acted gay...but no, he's straight. Meshach Taylor on Designing Women? Intended to be gay, but hit the airwaves straight, but written and played with a queer subtext. My Two Dads? Bosom Buddies? It all gets weird when run through the Reaganera repressionator. Strange stuff, this.
posted by sonascope at 10:10 PM on January 25 [3 favorites]


Bachelor Party was a great movie if you were a 14-year-old boy. Which I was.
posted by sharpener at 10:14 PM on January 25 [4 favorites]


TIL that Corey Feldman was in Madame's Place. All I remember about that show was being terrified of that hideous puppet. Almost as scary as Lady Elaine.
posted by artychoke at 6:57 AM on January 26


Speaking of gay subtext. I always had this strong feeling that Lady Elaine was a lesbian for whatever reason (and I didn't really know what a lesbian was at that age, but damn if I didn't always think she was one).

I never really thought of Bosom Buddies as being gay, nor my two dads (though I'm sure that was the subtext my mom read it as... I have a hard time knowing whether my mom didn't like a show because she just didn't like it or if it was some moral concern that had her not liking it). Meschach Taylor? I didn't know he was straight on the show - totally gay. JJ Bullock, I guess I wasn't too aware of "gay" at that age to really think about that (but yet, somehow, Lady Elaine... I DUNNO!?) I mean, I knew he had a bit of the stereotypical gay thing happening, but I guess I saw him more generally as asexual than gay. But I was just like you know 8 or something so... who knows.
posted by symbioid at 7:56 AM on January 26 [1 favorite]


Lady Elaine is the role model for future tiny mean butch lesbian curators everywhere.
posted by sonascope at 5:04 PM on January 26 [2 favorites]


I maintain that the first few seasons of Three's Company were awesome.

You are not wrong, Three's Company is one of the best television comedies ever made. Farce doesn't get respect unless it has silly accents and Connie Booth's nipples in it.
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 10:57 AM on January 27


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