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Tuesday, August 14, 2012

The Next To Last Batch Of Honorables.

This, of course means that next time will be the last of the Honorables, and we
will proceed directly to the Top Ten.

Continuing on, in descending order, getting stronger as we go:

"The Red Buttons Show"

Not everybody, even just a couple of years younger than me, remembers that
Red Buttons hosted his own variety show in
Prime Time in the early to mid 50's.
I remember seeing it when I was seven, and really enjoying it.
It's virtually impossible to find this theme on the internet.
For the cognoscenti, The "Ho Ho song", a.k.a. "Strange Things are Happening" appeared to be his theme song.
And he certainly opened with it every week.
But it wasn't his theme song.
For those of you not familiar with the "Ho Ho song, A.K.A. "Strange things are Happening", there are several examples of it on YouTube.
I remember hearing the theme music for the Red Buttons Show when I was seven, and it was great.
It was kind of an instrumental version of "Ho Ho", but had enough individuality to
be it's own entity.
It stayed lodged in the recesses of my brain until I was in New York a few years ago and went to the Museum of Broadcasting.
The musical theme for the ending was the one I remembered when I was seven.
It was great.
It was served up in a minor key,and totally captured what was good about the Red Buttons show.
At some point, I will have a lot more to say about Red Buttons.
Probably at least a two-parter.

"The Virginian"

One of those majestic western themes that I really appreciated just before I changed
the channel.

"Married With Children"

Sinatra singing "Love and Marriage"? Hard to beat it. And they gave it a nice
ironic twist.
The song was actually written for Sinatra to sing in a Musical version of "Our Town"
on TV in 1955. With such other notable singers as Paul Newman and Eva Marie Saint.

"The Trials of O'Brien"

Peter Falk, pre-rumpled, already breaking in his Columbo character. This time as
a lawyer. It had a great jazzy theme, that broke into a solid lush instrumental in midstream. Delightful.


A one season documentary shown on ABC in the sixties. FDR voice was done by
Charlton Heston. The show was illuminating, and the theme music was inspiring and gorgeous. Composed by my personal favorite, Alex North.

The last batch of Honorables will appear next time, then as advertised, it's on to the Top Ten.


My books ,"Show Runner" and it's sequel,"Show Runner Two", can be found at the Amazon Kindle Store.
Along with the newer ones, "The Man Is Dead", and "Report Cards".
You can search by typing in my name, Cindy Williams, Laverne & Shirley, The Odd Couple, or Happy Days.
Check them out.
You don't need a Kindle machine to download them.
Just get the free app from Kindle, and they can be downloaded to an IPhone, IPad, or Blackberry.
The paperback, "Mark Rothman's Essays" is still available for people without Kindle.
I have many readings and signings remaining, and the thing about Kindle is you can't sign one.
If you'd like one, contact me at
And now, we've got my reading of my "Laverne & Shirley Movie" screenplay on YouTube.



  1. More from my lifetime misspent reading credit crawls:

    - "The Virginian" was the only TV theme (as far as I know) composed by Percy Faith. (Next time you hear "A Summer Place", put "The Virginian" melody in front of it. Or vice versa. Fits like a glove ...)

    - "Trials Of O'Brien" was composed by Sid Ramin, who also did the "Patty Duke Show" theme.

    - Finally, "F.D.R."
    I remember this one because ABC kept it on the shelf for a couple of years. Eleanor Roosevelt died during the production, and the producers had to clear some sort of legal issues with the estate in order to use original footage they had of interviews with her.
    The theme music, which I remember to this day, was composed by Alex North.

    ... and one more thing ...

    ... the voice of FDR was Charlton Heston.
    (I have reference books to prove this, chiefly "The Complete Directory To Prime Time Network TV Shows", by Tim Brooks and Earle Marsh, which has gone through seven editions so far; another revision is about due, I should think.)

    Til next time ...

  2. Mike, I really appreciate you supplying the composers that I left out. It saves me a lot of work.
    I've only listed them when I thought it was significant. Everything Alex North wrote was significant.
    I accept your correction on Charlton Heston, who producer William O. Harbach, a master of the malaprop, called
    "Chester Moses".

  3. I made a couple of corrections based on Mike's comment.

  4. Thanks for your kind acknowledgement.

    Now I have to make a correction of my own:

    I wrote that the Brooks-Marsh book I'm using is in its 7th edition.
    I was wrong about that.
    It's in its 9th edition.
    The next one (which I said is about due) will be the 10th.
    And this one should be about the size of the City of Chicago White Pages (that's what we call the big phone book here).

    In proofreading I just noticed (honest) that i've included a direct example of the difference between 'its' and 'it's'.
    Wholly unintentional, I assure you.
    *but goddammit, I'm right about that!*

  5. You might be qualified for a complimentary Apple iPhone 7.



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About Me

Hi. I am, according to my Wikipedia entry,(which I did not create) a noted television writer, playwright, screenwriter, and occasional actor. You can Google me or go to the IMDB to get my credits, and you can come here to get my opinions on things, which I'll try to express eloquently. Hopefully I'll succeed. You can also e-mail me at Perhaps my biggest claim to fame is being responsible, for about six months in 1975, while Head Writer for the "Happy Days" TV series, for Americans saying to each other "Sit on it."