On the heels of the success of his "Button Down Mind" comedy albums, the young comic Bob Newhart was given a variety hour on television in the Fall of 1961, The Bob Newhart Variety Show, which featured guest musical talent and a large group of comic actors and actresses who appeared in various sketches about contemporary life..

Borrowing the format of his nightclub and album routines, each telecast opened with a monologue in which Newhart talked on the telephone with an unseen, and unheard, adversary. The conversation usually concluded with Newhart's regular tag line, "Same to you, fella."

Although the show was well acclaimed, winning an Emmy and the Peabody Award (perhaps the most coveted award in television,) it was cancelled after one season. As Bob joked, "it got an Emmy Award, a Peabody Award, and a pink slip in the same year."

But fame was to follow -- first in the Movies, then on Television.

BOB NEWHART SHOW (1972-1978)

The "Bob Newhart Show" debuted September 1972 on CBS and ran through August 1978. The show depicted the life of Bob Hartley, a Chicago psychologist, and his wife Emily, played by Suzanne Pleshette. The Bob Newhart Show is reknown for its warm sense of humor, Bob's ethical high standards guiding the show at a time in America when humor was becoming XXX-rated, and one of the finest casts of feature players on television, according to television critics and historians to this day. The Bob Newhart show was the product of the same creative team that had earlier produced "The Mary Tyler Moore Show" and there are many similarities between the humor of the two shows. A complete set of scripts of the series is available.

NEWHART   (1982-1990)

In 1982, Bob Newhart brought his patented stutter and unique timing back to network audiences with "Newhart," which ran from September of 1990. It featured the same mix of outstanding cast, music by Heny Mancini -- all set in the confines of an Inn in a rural New England town.

The show was repeatedly nominated for the Emmy Aaward. TV Guide ranked the final Newhart episode as the 5th most memorable moment in Television History! According to the Newhart page News Release, the top five moments were
1. Armstrong Walks On The Moon (July 20, 1969)
2. Lucy In The Candy Factory (September 15, 1952)
3. John-John's (Kennedy) Salute (November 25, 1963)
4. The Beatles First Appearance on The Ed Sullivan Show (February 9, 1964)
5. Newhart Final Episode (May 21, 1990)

BOB (1992-93)

"Bob" was Newhart's third successful sitcom. He played Bob McKay, the creator of a comic-book superhero.

GEORGE   &   LEO   (1997-??)

Bob Newhart is back! When asked why he was returning to TV Bob explained,
I said to my wife, "I can't play golf the rest of my life, I'm going to go nuts." I mean, if the only thing I have to show for all day is 84, it's not a very productive day.

Newhart's popularity as an actor and stand-up comedian through the 1960's led to his casting in a number of motion pictures, with some of the biggest film stars in Hollywood: Steve McQueen, Barbara Streisand, Jon Voigt, Walter Matthau, Peter Ustinov, Dick Van Dyke, Gene Wilder, Gilda Radner -- and of course, as the cartoon voice of Bernard the Mouse.
Menu Bar Hometown Comedy of Bob Newhart Bob Newhart on Television Bob Newhart in the Movies Bob Newhart on the Web

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Comments to Updated February 2, 1998