Archive for the ‘Decade: 1970's’ Category


August 4, 2017

“New York: this is your last chance!” Ba ba ba ba ba, ba ba ba ba…

And so goes the intro to Rhoda, the Mary Tyler Moore Show spin-off starring Valerie Harper as Rhoda Morgenstern, a 30-something, single, Jewish, New York woman who moves back to her hometown after living in Minneapolis. I loved this show as a kid. I had a mad crush on David Groh who played Rhoda’s love interest Joe and spoiler alert – husband. This is another show better left in my memory. It’s not bad, but it’s a bit flat all these years later. I watched two episodes of Rhoda and had enough. Oh well, I’ll hold on to the memories. Giving Rhoda a 3 out of 5 for old-time sake.

John Heard 1945 – 2017

July 22, 2017

Actor John Heard died yesterday at the age of 72. Heard is best known as the dad in the Home Alone franchise and for a role in The Sopranos. I’ll remember him best as the amoral friend of Susan Dey’s love interest, William Katt in the 1977 film First Love. Hearst had a child with one of my other favorite actors, Melissa Leo. RIP.

John Heard and Susan Dey in First Love (1977)

The Hardy Boys/Nancy Drew Mysteries (1977)

July 3, 2017

Tried watching the first episode of The Hardy Boys/Nancy Drew Mysteries (1977) on DVD from Netflix. To be honest, I’m not sure I ever watched these when they were first on television. Like many old shows, HB/NDM was probably best left to some vague, youthful memory. The quality definitely did not hold up all these years later. Even giving a handicap for time period. But honestly, when I look back at 1977, there’s no handicap necessary. This was the year American television gave us All in the Family, MASH, Charlie’s Angels, Happy Days, Barney Miller, One Day at a Time, Soap, The Jeffersons, Lou Grant, Rhoda, Alice, The Waltons, The Rockford Files, Family, Roots, The Mary Tyler Moore Show, and Maude! The Hardy Boys and Nancy Drew just didn’t rank at the top of the heap. Too bad because those feathered haircuts sure were dreamy. LOL. Best to stick to the classic novels which still enthrall young readers today. 2 out of 5. Next.

That Gay Episode: ‘Mary Tyler Moore’ Comes Out Of The Closet (Decider)

May 9, 2017

Photos: HULU ; Illustration: Dillen phelps; from Decider

Brett White over at Decider continues the series, That Gay Episode this time focusing on the famous Mary Tyler Moore episode where Phyllis finds out her brother is gay. From Decider,

Gay people worry about how they’re perceived — not for vanity reasons, but survival reasons. The period of a gay person’s life — be they minutes, months or years — between acknowledging their queer identity and proudly flying a rainbow flag are a nonstop internal Q(ueer) & A session.”Do they know I’m gay?” “Wait, does this make me seem gay?” “When do I tell them I’m gay?” It’s hard to express who you now know you are when you’re dealing with people whose perceptions of you run back decades.

These are the issues at the heart of The Mary Tyler Moore Show‘s 1973 episode “My Brother’s Keeper.” Unlike Cheers‘ “The Boys in the Bar,” which tackled machismo and gay panic by making half the cast straight-up homophobes, “My Brother’s Keeper” saved its big gay reveal for the very end. To get all meta, this is a gay episode that literally plays it straight for 24 of its 25 minutes.

Read the full article.
Read Kenneth in the 212’s blog post about how this episode and other quintessential queer moments on television personally affected him.

Classic TV Bloopers: Uncensored

April 9, 2017

Amazon Prime streams a pair of blooper reels from film and television. I watched Classic TV Bloopers: Uncensored. Most of the scenes are from television during the 60’s and 70’s. Think I Love Lucy, The Dick Van Dyke Show, The Mary Tyler Moore Show, Happy Days, M*A*S*H*, The Andy Griffith Show, and Laverne and Shirley. Uncensored means you get to hear your favorite celebrities swear like sailors. This makes for two hours of whimsical entertainment. Reacting to their mistakes is even funnier than the mistakes themselves. Enjoy a trip down memory lane with your favorite television stars. 3 out of 5.

Frenzy (The Masterpiece Collection)

March 18, 2017

There’s something fascinating watching one of Hitchcock’s final films from the 1970’s. Each contains a real reach on his part to embrace the influence of the graphic nature of violence in our culture. Looking back, it’s a shame because Hitchcock’s films masterfully told a violent story without showing every detail. Implied rather than in your face. Suspense vs. gore. Frenzy in 1972 turned out to be Hitchcock’s penultimate film. Family Plot released in 1976 and Hitch died in 1980 at the age of 81 years old. Filmed in London, Frenzy follows the “Neck Tie Serial Killer” who we think might be one person, but then perhaps someone else. The only name actor I recognized was Billie Whitelaw (Maurice). The rest of the cast did a good job keeping the plot moving. I will say there was some awful misogynistic dialogue that shocked me. I assume it was used to show the cavalier nature some men in power felt about rape. It was certainly rough to witness even historically. I enjoyed the final third of Frenzy much more than the beginning and middle. I wasn’t really sure where it was going for a long time and then it crystallized on to a “wronged man” plot device, working its way into a satisfying ending. This is definitely second tier Hitchcock, but even second tier is worth investigating, especially on a quiet Saturday night. 3 out of 5 for Frenzy.

For a more detailed view of the Frenzy misogyny and even how it relates to Trump, check out Frenzy’s review on Hitchcock 52, a great film project where each week in 2016 Matt Buchholz chronicles his viewing of a Hitchcock film.

Mary Tyler Moore (1936-2017)

January 26, 2017

Rest in Peace dear Mary Tyler Moore whose ground-breaking television series, Mary Tyler Moore (1970-1977) spun off not one but three series and a reunion movie:

Rhoda (1974–78)
Phyllis (1975–77)
Lou Grant (1977–82)
In 2000, Moore and Harper reprised their roles in a two-hour ABC TV-movie, Mary and Rhoda.

Prior to her series, Moore starred with Dick Van Dyke in The Dick Van Dyke Show (1961-1966). After her 70’s television run, Moore won acclaim for her role as Beth in Ordinary People (1980). More died yesterday at the age of 80.

Nothing showcases Moore and her co-stars sense of humor and timing quite like the episode Chuckles Bites the Dust. Watch it on Youtube.

Where To Stream Her Greatest Hits (Decider).

LGBTQ Film and Television History (SlideShare)

October 28, 2016

I updated my presentation I gave at Fairfield University last Spring for a program I did here at Fairfield Public Library on Thursday, October 27, 2016 in Connecticut. LGBTQ Film and Television History is a great introduction to the many films that despised and eventually celebrated our culture. Many of these films I have reviewed here on Reel Charlie. The PowerPoint is available on LinkedIn and SlideShare. Feel free to have a look below.

The Partridge Family turns 46

September 26, 2016

Where does the time go? My dear friend Nina texted me a reminder yesterday that The Partridge Family premiered on September 25, 1970 – 46 years ago! Funny, the Callie character on The Fosters currently sports a Season 4 Laurie Partridge haircut. Everything becomes new again. Happy Anniversary a day late Partridges. Dave Madden (Reuben Kincaid) died in 2014 and Suzanne Crough in 2015. Who knew the littlest Partridge would be one of the first to leave? I hope the rest of the cast are healthy and happy.

Watch a clip from the pilot episode on YouTube (Johnny Cash introduced them!):


Where to Stream All The Best Drama Emmy Winners (Decider)

September 20, 2016

From Decider,

…we here at Decider are paying tribute to TV’s illustrious history as we take a look back at every Outstanding Drama Emmy Award-winner in history.

From the ’50s and the days of Gunsmoke to the modern-day juggernauts like The West Wing and Mad Men, this video takes you on a tour of TV’s most prestigious shows through the years… you can find out where to stream all the Best Drama Emmy Award-winners of the past below!

See the full list at Decider.

Marcus Welby (1969- 1976)

Marcus Welby (1969- 1976)

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