Friday, April 2, 2021

What Might've Been: An unaired episode of Blondie (1968)

 Just in time for Easter, an enterprising YouTube poster using the handle, "Things I've Found", has unearthed a pair of episodes of the short-lived 1968 series, Blondie, the 2nd series adaptation of the long running comic strip. This episode, "Run, Buddy, Run", is fitting for this weekend.

Lemme tell ya why. Dagwood (Will Hutchins, ex-Hey, Landlord, Sugarfoot) is duped into dressing as an Easter Bunny for a party being hosted by Cora Dithers (Henny Backus). Cora had also used a little blackmail on her husband (Jim Backus). Seems the writers brought forward a gimmick Jim Backus used on Gilligan's Island, in that his character, in this case Julius Dithers, sleeps with a stuffed teddy bear.

Blondie had already been cancelled before this episode could air. While this might be the only series Jim & Henny Backus did together as series regulars, it would also be Jim's last series gig until the Gilligan's Island TV-movies more than a decade later.

The chemistry between child stars Pamelyn Ferdin (Cookie) & Peter Robbins (Alexander) carried over when they did some Peanuts cartoons together. Poor Pamelyn, however, had bad luck with series. She would later land a role on 1972's The Paul Lynde Show, the same year she debuted for Hanna-Barbera (Sealab 2020; she & Lynde would also work together on the 1st adaptation of "Charlotte's Web".). She would make the rounds of guest roles during the 70's, though (i.e. Streets of San Francisco).

So, here's an Easter treat:

The running gag with Dagwood and the mailman (Bryan O'Byrne) was also used in the 1957 iteration of the series.

Rating: B.

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