Thursday, December 14, 2006


As I'm sure most of you know, actor Peter Boyle died yesterday. I'm not gonna claim to be a huge fan, but I liked him quite a bit in a few memorable roles: the wise cabby, Wizard, that spoke to Travis at the coffee shop in Taxi Driver; Hunter S. Thompson's "attorney," Carl Lazlo in Where The Buffalo Roam; and of course, the Monster in Young Frankenstein.

The latter role was a comic masterpiece, and for that wild set of facial expressions, grunts, and grimaces alone, he'll be remembered. And it's for that he should be remembered.

Unfortunately, I fear that far too many will think of him as Ray Romano's dad on the execrable Every Loves Raymond, the inexplicably popular sit-com that somehow forgot the "com." Look at the headline from the Yahoo! News piece, by way of A.P: "'Raymond' Dad Peter Boyle Dies in NYC." Not "Young Frankenstein Monster," but "Raymond Dad."

Oh well. Next time I watch Young Frankenstein I'll laugh, as I always do, and that'll be good enough for me. RIP, Pete.


Blogger Otto Man said...

Definitely "Young Frankenstein."

Although he had a nice turn in "Turk 182" as well.

9:05 AM  
Anonymous Toast said...

Holy crap! I didn't know he was the Monster. Or, I knew but forgot. Wow. Yeah, that scene was unbelievably hysterical.

Agree on Raymond 100% I never understood what made that show so popular. To me, it embodied the cookie-cutter humor that keeps me away from most sitcoms.

10:44 AM  
Anonymous Mike said...

OM, I never saw that. Timothy Hutton was a firefighter, is that the one?

Good flick, or just a good Boyle in it?

Toast, join the club. While I know a few people that like it (and obviously the ratings/Emmys suggest there are millions more), but almost everyone I've talked to agrees that it's utter shite.

And yes, I'm the kind of guy who will manage to sneak this into a conversation sooner or later.

I guess it's a litmus test of sorts -- for me and the person I'm speaking with, I fear.

10:49 AM  
Blogger Otto Man said...

Good flick, or just a good Boyle in it?

Actually, neither. The flick is standard '80s fare, and Boyle plays a minor role as a cop. Eh.

I am thinking about renting "Joe," the 1970 Silent Majority vigilante film he did that propelled him to fame. It'd be nice to watch Boyle off some dirty, filthy hippies.

12:33 PM  
Anonymous Mike said...

1970. Billy Jack kicks racist ass, and Peter Boyle kicks hippy ass.

Man, them was some weird times.

Speaking of Tom "Billy Jack" Laughlin, check this shit out:

Seems Tommy hates Bush as well as everyone else.

12:49 PM  
Anonymous Donna said...

I liked Peter Boyle a lot. First saw him in "Young Frankenstein"--wonderful performance. Never watched Raymond. Anyone ever see "Dream Team"? Peter, Christopher Lloyd, Michael Keaton, and Stephen Furst--great cast.

12:54 PM  
Anonymous Mike said...

Never saw it, Donna. Though I just looked it up, and it does have a serious cast. The guys you mentioned, plus Lorraine Bracco & James Remar, Dr. Melfi & Ajax from The Warriors respectively..

1:24 PM  
Blogger Mr Furious said...

Fine, I'll man-up here. I liked "Raymond." [ducks]

I rejected it out of hand for years, but when I finally watched it, it was pretty damn funny at times. The similarities between my marriage and the one onscreen was to great to ignore.

And Boyle was hands-down the best part of the show. He was brilliant.

5:01 PM  
Blogger Mr Furious said...

"Dream Team" was pretty funny for it's time and context as a film.

5:02 PM  
Anonymous Mike said...

I also rejected it on principle for a long time. Then I was flying home from a work-related trip one afternoon about three years ago, and after the movie ended Raymond came on.

I decided to give it a chance watched 2 1/2 episodes (the last half was interrupted by the plane landing). I agree Boyle was a good curmudgeon, and I think Romano's a lilable guy in person & on the show.

But the laugh just weren't coming. From me that is. The other passengers were in stritches.

Comedy's a subjective thing.

5:12 PM  
Blogger George said...

I just want to join the "Everybody Hates Raymond" camp. Never got the point, but that's how I feel about so much tv "comedy." (Can someone explain a little phenomenon called "Friends" to me? Heck, I don't even think the women are that good looking.)

One of the weird things about living in Santa Barbara is you run into celebs a lot, and there's been many a night I've looked up at a restaurant and there's Christopher Lloyd. Always a bit unsettling.

5:15 PM  
Anonymous Mike said...

Can someone explain a little phenomenon called "Friends" to me?

Sorry, George. No help here.

5:48 PM  
Anonymous Donna said...


Next time you see Christopher Lloyd, give him a big sloppy kiss for me. Love that guy!

6:31 PM  

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