Tuesday, October 14, 2008

TODAY'S TWD: CELEBRATING WILLIAM SCHALLERT

Because of that previous piece about the New York Chronicle, and because he's been in the last two episodes of 'True Blood' as the Mayor of Bon Temps, Louisiana, I thought it might be nice to pay tribute to William Schallert.

TV Land - back when they really cared about our Television heritage - used to run a bumper celebrating Schallert as the hardest working man in television. And it's nice to tip my hat to the man's contributions to Toobworld before it becomes necessary with a Hat Squad Tribute.

I compiled the list of his TV credits from the IMDb.com. After removing all of the theatrically released movies, there were about 250 credits to his name. And that's just for the main show itself, not counting the multiple episodes he appeared in. For 'The Patty Duke Show' alone, there were nearly ninety episodes; another twenty for 'The Torkelsons' and eleven turns as Nancy Drew's Dad. And then there are his recurring roles in shows like 'The Many Loves Of Dobie Gillis' and 'Get Smart'. (Admiral Harold Harmon Hargrade is my favorite of his many roles.) Many long-running shows can count at least two different roles created by William Schallert. For 'Gunsmoke' alone, he played seven distinct characters.

If I tried to post his complete resume, of just the TV credits alone, I'd have to split the post up to fit it all. That hasn't happened since I ran the Hat Squad tribute for Lloyd Bochner. So instead, I'm going to post some pictures to show the range of roles he played throughout the Toobworld timeline.....

Martin Lane
'The Patty Duke Show' and the reunion movie "Still Rockin' Brooklyn Heights"
'The Nancy Drew Mysteries', 'The Torkelsons',
and Milton the Toaster for Kellog's Pop-Tarts
'Bewitched' and 'Lou Grant'
'The Andy Griffith Show' and 'Leave It To Beaver'
(a role he reprised in the sequel, 'Still The Beaver')
'Gunsmoke', 'Dr. Kildare', 'Philbert'

Three different characters from 'The Rifleman'Frank Harper, 'The Wild, Wild West'
(Harper could have been the ancestor to Warden Harper in an episode of 'Stoney Burke')
'Star Trek', 'True Blood', 'Star Trek: Deep Space Nine'
I'll have to do a bit more research, but I think Martin Lane could end up being inducted into the TV Crossover Hall of Fame. But that depends on how his episode of 'Roseanne' played out. It could have been part of that disastrous final season which was all part of a novel Roseanne Conner had been writing.

So here's to you, William Schallert! Thanks for so enriching the world of Toob!

BCnU!
Toby O'B

1 comment:

Ivan G. Shreve, Jr. said...

Leander Pomfritt is my favorite of Schallert's TV characters. "Hello, my young unemployables..."