Monday, September 26, 2005

We'll miss him by that much...

TV has lost another one of the greats – Don Adams is dead at age 82.

For many, Adams will always be remembered as Maxwell Smart, a.k.a. Agent 86, in the classic TV series “Get Smart!”

His Associated Press obituary (below) goes into great detail about “Get Smart!” But doesn’t mention the voice work Adams was also known for. When I think of Don Adams, of course “Get Smart!” is the first thing to come to mind. But right on the heels of that is “Tennessee Tuxedo.”

In later years he provided the voice for “Inspector Gadget” – a sort of cross between “Get Smart!” and “The Six Million Dollar Man.” also says he had uncredited role in “Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer” as Coach Comet during the reindeer games scene. I never realized that was him, but thinking back on it now it does sort of sound like him.

In the hands of creators Mel Brooks and Buck Henry, "Get Smart!" was a classic. Unortunately, efforts to revive the show failed miserably. A movie version of show released in 1980 called "The Nude Bomb" was...well...a bomb. And a 1995 version for Fox that brought back Don Adams and Barbara Feldon from the original show but focuses on Andy Dick as their son was a flop.
Don Adams, TV's fumbling secret agent on `Get Smart,' dies at 82
By BOB THOMAS Associated Press Writer

LOS ANGELES (AP)- Don Adams, the wry-voiced comedian who starred as the fumbling secret agent Maxwell Smart in the 1960s television spoof of James Bond movies, "Get Smart," has died. He was 82.

Adams died of a lung infection late Sunday at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, his friend and former agent Bruce Tufeld said Monday, adding the actor broke his hip a year ago and had been in ill health since.

As the inept Agent 86 of the super-secret federal agency C.O.N.T.R.O.L., Adams captured TV viewers with his antics in combatting the evil agents of C.H.A.O.S.
When his explanations failed to convince the villains or his boss, he tried another tack: "Would you believe ...?"

It became a national catch phrase.

Smart was also prone to spilling things on the desk or person of The Chief (actor Edward Platt). Smart's apologetic "Sorry about that, chief" also entered the American lexicon.

The spy gadgets, which aped those of the Bond movies, were a popular feature, especially the pre-cell-phone telephone in a shoe.

Smart's beautiful partner, Agent 99, played by Barbara Felden, was as brainy as he was dense, and a plot romance led to marriage and the birth of twins later in the series.

Adams, who had been under contract to NBC, was lukewarm about doing a spy spoof. When he learned that Mel Brooks and Buck Henry had written the pilot script, he accepted immediately. "Get Smart" debuted on NBC in September 1965 and scored No. 12 among the season's most-watched series and No. 22 in its second season.

"Get Smart" twice won the Emmy for best comedy series with three Emmys for Adams as comedy actor.

(Copyright 2005 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)


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