Bob Newhart Show, The (1972-78)


The Academy of Television Arts & Sciences Foundation Presents

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About

As with many 1970s ensemble sitcoms, such as The Mary Tyler Moore Show, The Bob Newhart Show focused on career-oriented adults, mostly single, related by circumstance rather than blood. Newhart played Dr. Bob Hartley, a psychologist practicing in Chicago. He treated a variety of patients whose problems, no matter how eccentric, were played for laughs; the star among them was the misanthropic Elliott Carlin (Jack Riley). Bob's office mate was Dr. Jerry Robinson (Peter Bonerz), an orthodontist and typical 1970s "swinging single"; they shared the services of a quick-witted secretary-receptionist, Carol Kester (Marcia Wallace). Bob's wife, Emily--smart, funny, sexy--was played by Suzanne Pleshette. The couple's neighbor and closest friend in their high-rise apartment building was Howard Borden (Bill Daily), a childlike airline navigator who ate most of his meals with the Hartleys and had them water his plants even when he was home; he was, in effect, the offspring they didn't have. "That guy could lose an argument with a fern," was the caustic Carlin's comment on Howard. A few lines and situations illustrate the show's deft and daft humor: Bob and Emily having a bicentennial party in 1976 and inviting Carlin because, according to Bob, "He says he gets lonely every bicentennial;" Howard explaining how spilling salt could be fatal--this after Bob nearly fell down an elevator shaft and became obsessed with death; the Hartleys sending Howard to a psychologist so he can become independent and responsible--but then wanting the old Howard back; Jerry coming into money, giving up his practice, and turning into "the village coot," who wants to do nothing but whittle and watch the sunrise. These characters, even if defined by their specific quirks, developed and grew throughout the show's long run. Emily began as a substitute teacher, became a full-time teacher and moved up to vice principal; Carol married a travel agent and also tried out some other careers, but always came back to Bob and Jerry; Howard was engaged for a time to Bob's sister Ellen, a newspaper reporter, but she went out of his life and off the show when she moved to Cleveland for a better job (and after she had a flirtation with Howard's visiting brother, game warden Gordon Borden). The show made creative use of some running gags--Bob's one-sided telephone conversations, which had been a popular part of Newhart's standup act; his habit of trying to explain situations by using analogies no one understood; and his bedtime conversations with Emily, as each could turn back on the light, and make one more comment.

CAST

Robert (Bob) Hartley............................... Bob Newhart

Emily Hartley................................. Suzanne Pleshette

Howard Borden............................................. Bill Daily

Jerry Robinson....................................... Peter Bonerz

Carol Kester Bondurant....................... Marcia Wallace

Margaret Hoover (1972-1973).................. Patricia Smith

Dr. Bernie Tupperman (1972-1976).......... Larry Gelman

Ellen Hartley (1974-1976)............................. Pat Finley

Larry Bondurant (1975-1977).................. Will McKenzie

Eliot Carlin .................................................Jack Riley

Mrs. Bakerman ....................................Florida Friebus

Miss Larson (1972-1973)...................... Penny Marshall

Michelle Nardo (1973-1976)...................... Renee Lippin

Mr. Peterson (1973-1978).......................... John Fiedler

Mr. Gianelli (1972-1973)............................. Noam Pitlik

Mr. Vickers (1974-1975)........................... Lucien Scott

Mr. Herd (1976-1977)................................. Oliver Clark

PRODUCERS

Tom Patchett, Jay Tarses, David Davis, Lorenzo Music, Michael Zinberg

PROGRAMMING HISTORY

138 Episodes CBS

September 1972-October 1976   Saturday 9:30-10:00

November 1976-September 1977   Saturday 8:30-9:00

September 1977-April 1978   Saturday 8:00-8:30

June 1978-August 1978   Saturday 8:00-8:30

Highlights
Bob Newhart on the creation of The Bob Newhart Show
05:13
Suzanne Pleshette on being cast on The Bob Newhart Show
08:18
Jay Sandrich on how comedian Bob Newhart was nervous until the cameras turned on on The Bob Newhart Show
01:26
Bill Daily on co-starring on The Bob Newhart Show as "Howard Borden" and the show's talented writers
01:44
Peter Bonerz on the legacy of The Bob Newhart Show
01:07
Who talked about this show

Peter Bonerz

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Peter Bonerz on the legacy of The Bob Newhart Show
01:07
Peter Bonerz on getting hired for The Bob Newhart Show, and the shows original premise
01:15
Peter Bonerz on his Bob Newhart Show character "Jerry Robinson" and the other characters in the ensemble
02:28
Peter Bonerz on the atmosphere on the set of The Bob Newhart Show, and keeping the show on schedule as a director
00:46
Peter Bonerz on the socializing of the cast of The Bob Newhart Show
00:51
Peter Bonerz on his enjoyment both acting and directing for The Bob Newhart Show
00:59
Peter Bonerz on how open the set was for The Bob Newhart Show of all the shows then being produced at MTM
00:45
Peter Bonerz on why he wanted to direct for The Bob Newhart Show
01:40
Peter Bonerz on ordering a rigged up iron to create a special effect on The Bob Newhart Show episode "A Love Story"
01:01
Peter Bonerz on the decision to end The Bob Newhart Show
00:51

Les Charles

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Glen and Les Charles on producing and writing for the last season of The Bob Newhart Show
08:41
Glen and Les Charles on the series finale of The Bob Newhart Show
02:34

Glen Charles

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Glen and Les Charles on producing and writing for the last season of The Bob Newhart Show
08:41
Glen and Les Charles on the series finale of The Bob Newhart Show
02:34

Jack Riley with Emerson College

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Jack Riley on playing "Elliott Carlin" on The Bob Newhart Show
03:42
Jack Riley on playing "Elliott Carlin" on The Bob Newhart Show
02:46
Jack Riley on what made his character of "Elliott Carlin" funny on The Bob Newhart Show
01:52

Bill Daily

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Bill Daily on co-starring on The Bob Newhart Show as "Howard Borden"
02:01
Bill Daily on getting hired on by The Bob Newhart Show creators Lorenzo Music and Dave Davis
00:47
Bill Daily on his favorite episodes of The Bob Newhart Show
00:54
Bill Daily on storylines on The Bob Newhart Show
00:55
Bill Daily on the ending of The Bob Newhart Show
02:22
Bill Daily on a TV Guide cover sketch of the cast of The Bob Newhart Show
00:37
Bill Daily on a photo of him with the cast of The Bob Newhart Show
01:19

William Daniels

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William Daniels on appearing on The Bob Newhart Show and The Nancy Walker Show
02:12

Jamie Farr

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Jamie Farr on the best night of television ever - Saturday night with All in the Family, M*A*S*H, The Bob Newhart Show, The Mary Tyler Moore Show, and The Carol Burnett Show
01:05

Gary David Goldberg

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Gary David Goldberg on writing for MTM's The Bob Newhart Show
05:05

Arnie Kogen

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Arnie Kogen on writing for The Bob Newhart Show and Newhart
06:18

Louise Lasser

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Louise Lasser on appearing on The Bob Newhart Show
00:51

Will Mackenzie

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Will Mackenzie on moving to Los Angeles and on appearing on Rhoda and The Bob Newhart Show, where he learned to direct for television
04:23
Will Mackenzie on directing The Bob Newhart Show
02:08
Will Mackenzie on working with Bob Newhart and Marcia Wallace on The Bob Newhart Show
02:40

Penny Marshall

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Penny Marshall on guest-starring on The Bob Newhart Show and The Mary Tyler Moore Show
01:21

Dick Martin

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Dick Martin on directing The Bob Newhart Show
04:32

Bob Newhart

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Bob Newhart on the creation and casting of The Bob Newhart Show
05:13
Bob Newhart on taping the pilot of The Bob Newhart Show
02:15
Bob Newhart on the relationships between the central characters on The Bob Newhart Show
03:43
Bob Newhart on the cast of The Bob Newhart Show
09:49
Bob Newhart on the writers and directors on The Bob Newhart Show
03:28
Bob Newhart on the pilot and first episode of The Bob Newhart Show
01:49
Bob Newhart on the catchphrase "Hi, Bob!" from The Bob Newhart Show
00:56
Bob Newhart on similarities and differences between his TV wives on The Bob Newhart Show and on Newhart
01:13
Bob Newhart on specific episodes of The Bob Newhart Show
03:57
Bob Newhart on the final episode of The Bob Newhart Show
01:43
Bob Newhart on the writers wanting to make his wife on The Bob Newhart Show pregnant, and disagreeing with the story
01:23
Bob Newhart on the ongoing success of The Bob Newhart Show and Newhart
03:02
Bob Newhart on a photo of him with the cast of The Bob Newhart Show
00:20

Suzanne Pleshette

View Interview
Suzanne Pleshette on being cast on The Bob Newhart Show
08:18
Suzanne Pleshette on playing "Emily Hartley" on The Bob Newhart Show
05:19
Suzanne Pleshette on reprising her role of "Emily Hartley" on the final episode of Newhart
03:42
Suzanne Pleshette on the cast of The Bob Newhart Show
04:37
Suzanne Pleshette on "breaking up" while filming The Bob Newhart Show
02:09
Suzanne Pleshette on ending The Bob Newhart Show
05:56

Tom Poston

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Tom Poston on his recurring role on The Bob Newhart Show
03:16

Carroll Pratt

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Carroll Pratt on providing a laugh track for The Carol Burnett Show, The Jeffersons, Mama's Family, and The Bob Newhart Show, and on not getting screen credit for his work
03:35

Jay Sandrich

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Jay Sandrich on directing the pilot episode of The Bob Newhart Show and how nervous Bob Newhart was
01:26

Abby Singer

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Abby Singer on being production manager on Rhoda and The Bob Newhart Show
04:28

Grant Tinker

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Grant Tinker on the creation of The Bob Newhart Show at MTM
00:37

Daniel J. Travanti

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Actor Daniel J. Travanti on his appearance on an episode of The Bob Newhart Show
00:35

Fred Willard

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Fred Willard on appearing on The Bob Newhart Show
01:34

Hugh Wilson

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Hugh Wilson on writing for The Bob Newhart Show and learning to write scripts
04:04

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