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Friday, April 10, 2015

THE Funniest Battle-Axes. Part Two.

More great, great, hilarious battle-axes:

Verna Felton: Best known as easily the funniest performer on the sitcom "December Bride" as Hilda Crocker, Spring Byington's best friend. EVERYBODY played straight to her, as she delivered sledgehammer punch-lines that never missed.
She also scored big as Dennis Day's mother on "The Jack Benny Show".
It was an inspiration to have someone play Dennis Day's mother.
And casting Verna Felton to play her was a bigger inspiration.

Beatrice Pons: Utterly hilarious as Joe E. Ross's hatchet-faced wife on both ""Sergeant Bilko" and "Car 54, Where Are You?"
I had never seen her in anything else before or since, but lately she has shown up in the original "Goldbergs" series, where she played straight to Gertrude Berg.
Gertrude Berg seemed to decree that no other actress get laughs besides Gertrude Berg.

Amanda Randolph: Absolutely owned the stage as Danny Thomas's maid, Louise, on "Make Room For Daddy".
Same deal as Kingfish's mother-in-law on "Amos 'n Andy.
A major hoot.

Nancy Walker: A great Battle-axe before she was ever Rhoda's mother.
Usually on Broadway. She was a great physical comedienne.

Honorable Mention: Frances Langford. She carved a major battle-axe niche for herself as Blanche Bickerson on "The Bickersons"
Only problem was that they very rarely gave her the punch-lines.
Don Ameche got all the punch-lines.
So Langford did all the straight set-ups.
It became one-note, and repetitious.
I don't know where the blame lies.
But the show itself was extremely funny.

Next time, more benign battle-axes.

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".
They are all compilations of blog entries that have since been removed from the blog.
So this is the only way you can find them.
You can search by typing in my name, Cindy Williams, Laverne and 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.
I have many readings and signings lined up for those, and the thing about Kindle is that you can't sign one.
But they are available for people without Kindle.
If you'd like one of the paperbacks, personally autographed, contact me at
And now, we've got my reading of my "Laverne and Shirley Movie" screenplay on YouTube.



  1. I'm was hoping you'd mention Verna Felton because I thought of her while I was reading one of your earlier posts. I'm glad someone remembered her.

    I think she also played an animated battle-ax -- Fred Flintstone's mother-in-law. And I believe she was the fairy godmother in "Cinderella," introducing the song "Bibbity Bobbity Boo,."

    Also, thanks for reminding me about Beatrice Pons. Her performances were flawless.

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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."