That Girl

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Today is the birthday of Marlo Thomas (b. 1937). It may be ironic, but it’s likely that Ann Marie’s Quixotic attempts to be a successful Broadway actress in New York would have been among the first influences that planted a similar idea in my head as a young whippersnapper. Heartbreak and struggle seem so much more glamorous when they come with a laugh track! More compelling than the character’s own example though was the exciting lure of the city itself, which was like a character itself on the program. Below is the show’s memorable opener, which clearly influenced the credit sequences of a great many subsequent shows, including those of The Odd Couple, The Mary Tyler Moore Show and The Bob Newhart Show.

For more on the history of show business consult No Applause, Just Throw Money: The Book That Made Vaudeville Famousavailable at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and wherever nutty books are sold.

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And don’t miss my new book Chain of Fools: Silent Comedy and Its Legacies from Nickelodeons to Youtube, just released by Bear Manor Media, also available from amazon.com etc etc etc

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