Listen to the career history of Betty White with Ed and Greg Ehrbar in the "TV Confidential" podcast. The two take a detailed look from Betty White's first appearance on the radio to Golden Girls.
Publish Date: Apr 05, 2021
one of the things that I hadn't realised just prior to life with Elizabeth, she hopes her first serious. She hosted a show, a local show in Los Angeles called Hollywood on television. And it was because of that, that she ended up getting her first series life with Elizabeth. Was that the show that she was on for, like hours and hours and hours every day and had to just wing it? It was, It was It was a look. It was a local weekday talk show in the classic sense of the word. I mean, it was it was local television the way Ernie Kovacs was local television and that it was live and you were working without a net. Well, that's the thing. Also about this fascinating about Betty White is that she is living. It sounds like it kind of sounds like she's old, but it's like she's living history because her entire career is the entire history of television. I know exactly what you speak. It just shows that she's someone who transcends several different forms of television and, uh, and again someone who has reinvented herself, which is another reason that speaks to her longevity because prior to playing Sue Ann Nivens she was. I guess she was typecast as because she was sort of known for being very nice, and so she had an opportunity to play a different type of character. And then she she totally changed the way you thought of Betty White. And then 78 years later, when the Golden Girls came along, she was offered the Rue McClanahan role Blanche Blanche, and she turned that down. She said, I've already done that. I wanted I wanted to play Rose, which was again. It was Rose was sweeter, but Rose was the innocent, and again that allowed her to play a different type of character and draw other dig down deep to other stuff she had as a performer. She has the ability to be contemporary in that she's on the hot in Cleveland show now and its body show, and she's She can throw the body humor around, and she's one of those people who can do that and still be graceful, charming and lovable. What else is part of this life with Elizabeth Date with the Angels collection through Mill Creek Entertainment slash shelf factory? Well, there's a lot of these collections because I I'm assuming these shows are our public domains. You can find them in bins, but the Millcreek collections because it has quite a few of both serious. So you can compare them and and remark at the fact that she looks the same And she always had just so much talent for being able to be believable and also being able to deliver a comedy in A in a real yet very funny way. I mean, she had it. She just was born with that ability. Uh, these shows are, are in some ways are the Paic. You know, it's the husband and wife, and sometimes the wife is a little bit treated a little bit too, uh, derisively like, Oh, she's so dumb. But on the other hand, they were inconsistent and that sometimes she's much smarter than her husband. Um, Life with Elizabeth is a sort of a sketch comedy sitcom and has three different situations, and it's basically her and Dell more who I know him best from being on the Jerry Lewis movies. He was the dean and nutty professor, and he plays announcers and things like that. He was a good friend of Jerry Lewis and a professional announcer, and it has a few guests characters. But for the most part it's the two of them doing little vignettes. And they're introduced by Jack Nars, renowned game show host. Jack Nars, host of Concentration, Brother of Tom. Tom Kennedy. My favorite Nars because Tom Kennedy's real name is Jim Nars, right? Right. That would be a series to my favorite knives. My favorite Nars, yes, but well, on this series, it's very low budget. That's the theme song is just somebody playing a harp, but it's It's cute and it's not some of it's weird. You know, Jack nurses aren't Jewish, aimed a lot, and it's like I don't know. Sometimes it doesn't even fit, but they can't figure out how to end it. And then she She sort of looks at him at the beginning and at the end, you know, she sort of in mind at the beginning, he's saying, What are you doing? Elizabeth? And she's like, gesture. And then they go into their sketch. And then the announcer in the last segment would either do that. Aren't you ashamed or it's time to say Good night. Good night, everybody. So it's odd, Um, but it's it's kind of it's kind of interesting and somewhat entertaining. Uh, the second series date with the Angels is also about a young, newly married couple, and Tom Kennedy is the announcer. Obviously, she had a long standing relationship with the Nars brothers. Yeah, and that's probably the hand in hand with her game show appearances. Well, I think I'm pretty sure she did. You don't say. I'm pretty sure she didn't break the bank. I'm pretty sure she did. Every show hosted by Jim and Jack Nurse or it's always love you don't say great show. Yes, it's not. What you do say is what you don't say In date with the Angels, you have a little bit of a different dynamic. The husband is played by Bill Williams, who you know who that is, the husband of Barbara Hale and Della Street on Perry Mason and father of William Katt, the greatest American hero. Yahoo, he strongly resembles Yes, and it's much more of a standard household sitcom than life with Elizabeth. And what's interesting about it are the not just the couple's interaction, but the guest people. There's There's a lot of very familiar, not just people who are celebrities like like Chuck Connors and your O'Brien and some of the episodes. But one of her best friends is a lady who works in a department store played by Nancy Culp, and that's kind of cool because she's playing a very different kind of character than Jane Hathaway. And then they've got these very strange neighbors that get very, very much very important to the stories they start dominating several of the stories. It's the Finley family and you got Bert Must, um, who was, as my dad would say was born old Mr Finley. And then you've got Roger, played by Richard Deacon at his most irritatingly sanctimoniously patronizing. He is insufferable, but he's so funny because he totally takes over and he's so totally out of it. And yet he's He teaches psychology, but he's the most screwed up guy, so they're they're They're inherently very, very funny characters, and they appear a lot. So this show has a lot more of the teenager named Wheeler, which is Jimmy Boy who's saying, I saw Mommy kissing Santa Claus and he's got this weird voice and he's a funny character. So there's a lot more comedy meat to this show, um, that then in life with Elizabeth. But you can kind of see the relationship between two besides the announcers being brothers, this portion of TV Confidential is brought to us by our friends at Front Porch Realty.