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Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Wally Cox Day On The OTN.

Homage must be paid to "Mister Peepers", which, of course, is never shown anywhere.
I have a hefty collection of them on DVD.
They are all priceless.
It was pretty much everyone's first exposure to Wally Cox, and his unique brand of hilarious underplaying.
According to IMDB, there were only 32 episodes of it, aired in 1952 and 1953.
It seems like there were more.
IMDB also indicates that it ran through 1955.
So your guess is as good as mine.
I hope that there is someone out there who's better at guessing.
It was also pretty much everyone's first exposure to Marion Lorne, who broke in her babbling and stuttering style, which she later used on the Garry Moore Show, and "Bewitched"
But the writing served her much better on "Mister Peepers"
It was also pretty much everyone's first exposure to Tony Randall, who broke in the character that he usually played in those Doris Day-Rock Hudson movies, as Rock's best friend.
It was an expertly crafted show, and the writing was brilliant.
If we can't get the OTN off the ground, seek out the DVDs.

Wally Cox had another series, just barely remembered, called "The Adventures of Hiram Holliday"
Only 26 episodes were made of that.
I think it was a summer replacement show, and it spanned the years 1956 through 1959. I remember watching it when I was a kid and thoroughly enjoying it and Wally.

Here is a description of the premise, as provided by IMDB:

"Hiram, thought to be a meek-little nobody by everyone around him, is one day discovered to have a range of skills that would make James Bond green with envy. The publisher of the newspaper where he works as a proofreader, recognizing the sales potential of Hiram's story, sends the young man on a trip around the world along with reporter Joel Smith to document his adventures for readers back home."

There is an episode of it on YouTube which I just watched.
It is, as I remember it was, loaded with charm, and terrific underplaying by Cox.
All the episodes took place in exotic locales that gave you the impression that they never left the backlot.
But it didn't matter.
The more exotic the locale, the more out of place Wally seemed in it.
And the more entertaining it was.

Wally Cox is just another one of those greats that a not-too-much-younger generation could not pick out of a police lineup.
More's the pity.

Mark Rothman, CEO of the OTN.


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 paperbacks, "Mark Rothman's Essays" and my new novel, "I'm Not Garbo" are not
e-books. But they are available for people without Kindle.
I have many readings and signings lined up for those, and the thing about Kindle is you can't sign one. If you'd like one of the paperbacks, personally autographed, contact me at
And now, we've got my reading of my "Laverne & Shirley Movie" screenplay on YouTube.



  1. There were 117 episodes of "Mr. Peepers," 102 of which survive. This site encapsulates the plotlines:

  2. HIRAM HOLLIDAY was a one-season wonder, the 1956-57 season to be exact.
    Wally Cox recalled it with some rue in an article he wrote for TV GUIDE a couple of years afterward.
    He notede that NBC had placed HH opposite DISNEYLAND, " ... which was very large at the time ..." to use his words.

    There's another site I visit frequently called Mystery*File Blog.
    HIRAM HOLLIDAY recieved a write-up there by a fellow named Michael Shonk, with whom I often find myself in colloquy over TV old and not-so-old, particularly in the crime/adventure category, in which HH connects at least tangentially.
    Several HIRAM HOLLIDAY episodes are available on C2C DVDs (aka bootlegs), including the one on YouTube.
    But there's another one, entitled "Sea Cucumber", with which Mr. Shonk and I got into a lively debate about one scene, involving Wally Cox rescuing his sidekick from the surf.
    When you get the chance, go to Mystery*File Blog and look up the post for THE ADVENTURES OF HIRAM HOLLIDAY by Michael Shonk, and check out his and my comments. (Don't ask me for the URL; I cannot figure those out to save my life.)

    I believe that Wally Cox's current obscurity can be ascribed mainly to his early death in 1973 - he was only 48.
    A lot can happen in 40 years - some performers disappear, others make comebacks or are rediscovered.
    If he were alive today, Wally Cox would be 79.
    Maybe he might have come back, or been rediscovered - or just never have gone away.
    Remember Charles Lane.

    I took delivery this morning on a new book:
    A dual biography that most of us have been waiting for.
    Just FYI ...

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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."