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What Once Beloved TV Character Now Strikes You As Being Annoying?


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#21 of 212 OFFLINE   DaveHof2

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Posted May 06 2013 - 08:24 PM

Interesting 'Bewtiched' observations already. I still enjoy Dick York's take on Darren, but I find Dick Sargent almost unwatchable.

 

My annoying character list:

 

Kathy on Father Knows Best -when I was growing she just seemed like another fresh-faced sitcom kid, but watching these shows now she comes across as an incorrigible spoiled brat who needs a time out.

 

Emily on Family Affair - she never fit into the world established by the series in its first four seasons.

 

Angel on The Rockford Files - I know he's meant to be annoying, but that doesn't change the fact that he gets on my last nerve.



#22 of 212 OFFLINE   Frank Soyke

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Posted May 06 2013 - 08:25 PM

Any superflous character on Golden Girl's. Hve you ever noticed that the producer's were too cheap to give the extras any lines? Blanche's dates would show up at the door and say nothing while Sophia and Dorpthy quipped with each other.



#23 of 212 OFFLINE   Frank Soyke

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Posted May 06 2013 - 08:27 PM

Any character on Different Strokes other than Conrad Bain. They can't act at all. They are just reading off of cue cards. Badly. Gary Coleman is horrid



#24 of 212 OFFLINE   Ejanss

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Posted May 06 2013 - 08:29 PM

For me, it's Darren Stephens.  He's so boorish toward every member of Sam's family (sometimes even toward poor old Aunt Clara) that it's no wonder Endora despises him.  When Samantha goes on to her mother about what an extraordinary human being Darren is, you have to just take her word for it, because he's actually a short-tempered hothead.

 

Yes, but WHICH Darren? 
Back when Nick at Nite did cute pop-spoofs on classic reruns for their ID spots, they did a funny guide to telling Dick York apart from Dick Sargent:  York's Darren was more panicky and overreacting, while Sargent's Darren was more suave and slow-burning, and preferred to trade insult barbs with Endora.

As NaN put it:  "York:  If Samantha had married Dagwood; Sargent:  If Samantha had married Col. Hogan".    ;)

 

I think in fairness you also have to take into consideration the longevity of Gracie's career playing this kind of "Dumb Dora" character which went back to the 1920s in vaudeville when that kind of character was a staple

But I don't see it as innocence.  I see it as pure, unadulterated stupidity.  There's something wrong with that woman and if you knew someone like that in real life, it wouldn't be cute or funny.  It would be a cause for concern.  Lucy was wacky, but she was clever.  Unlike Gracie, Lucy had a brain that actually functioned.  I know it's just a silly comedy, but in real life anyone who behaved like Gracie Allen would have to be put away in an institution.

 

I take the opposite view:
Lucy comes off as a walking disaster--Put her next to a smart character like Rob Petrie who might end up in bumbling slapstick situations, and it's funnier to see someone we relate to have things come crashing down around them than someone who has "clown character" written in her very entrances, outfit and makeup.

 

Gracie, OTOH, could get away with the silliest lines just by being so sweetly and guilelessly deadpan about them--Like the fabled Fools of Chelm, you believed her lines because SHE believed them so earnestly:

Insurance Salesman:  "Are the kids at school, Mrs. Burns?"
Gracie:  "Oh, George and I don't have any children."
Salesman:  "Well, that's all right, I'm sure you'll have a dog or a cat someday."
Gracie:  "No, no, if George and I have anything, it'll be children."

FTR, Lucy, Gale Gordon and George Burns recreated Gracie's "Filing clerk" sketch on "Here's Lucy", and...Gracie did it so much better.  :)

 

(As for "Dumb Dora"...all that does is remind me how creepy and slimy Gene Rayburn comes off nowadays on Game Show Network "Match Game" reruns.  Yeesh, did I watch that??)

 

But just to throw one in here:  Did anyone like Kojak?  No, seriously.

Telly Savalas just came off as too Rat-Pack to actually do the acting he was paid for.



#25 of 212 OFFLINE   Jack P

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Posted May 06 2013 - 08:34 PM

I like Kojak.   He's actually a fascinating flipside of Columbo in that Columbo is the shabby New York cop working in the elegant surroundings of LA where he never has to worry about seedy, violent crime and only solves drawing room mysteries whereas Kojak is the well-dressed elegant cop working in the seedy environment.

 

I'm the biggest fan of Match Game there ever was, but yes, Gene Rayburn could at times be a bit annoying but more so in the show's later years when it really went downhill following the departure of Richard Dawson in 1978.



#26 of 212 OFFLINE   Joe Lugoff

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Posted May 06 2013 - 08:57 PM

FTR, Lucy, Gale Gordon and George Burns recreated Gracie's "Filing clerk" sketch on "Here's Lucy", and...Gracie did it so much better.  :)
 
Actually, it was the first episode of the fifth season of THE LUCY SHOW and it's excruciatingly unfunny.  It goes far beyond any kind of realistic stupidity or wackiness into an impossibly brain-damaged person who wouldn't last an hour working in a real bank.  It's so easy to write "stupid" like that, with no rhyme or reason to it.  And, yes, Lucy stunk at it but it was hardly a knee-slapper when Gracie did it.


#27 of 212 OFFLINE   Peter M Fitzgerald

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Posted May 06 2013 - 09:37 PM

The perfect antidote to Gracie Allen: http://youtu.be/LwyRquXjSio?t=3m42s


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#28 of 212 OFFLINE   Tory

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Posted May 06 2013 - 11:11 PM

While the temptation to defend is there, I will try not to and shoot I cstill like these characters I list to some extent but I have always felt this way about them:

 

Darren on Bewitched: I know he has been listed by several, the "50s" attitude is part of it but I think it is, and this is why Endora does not like him, his total rejection of Samantha's basic birthright, culture and history. He hates that she is a witch, He is ashamed of it and Samantha tries a lot of the time to deny herself to please him.

 

Ricky Ricardo on I Love Lucy: 50s attitude, jealous, temper tantrums, and every time Lucy had a shot at the "big time" he would pout and force her to give it up. he took her for granted and treated her like a pest. There was love there though. In both cases.

 

Ralph Kramden on honeymooners, always upset, temper tantrum, chidish, abusive, 50s stereotype. What was good though is Alice gave as good as she got.

 

The mother on One Day at a Time: She seemed selfish and self centered. Her motivation for divorce lacked some depth, from what I have seen most recently (only the first season on DVD saw the rest when I was  akid though) What annoys me is she leaned on and used and totally destroyed this great guy that helped her and loved her in the first season, not the ex, I think he was a lawyer. It all seemed to be about her and nobody else in the way she handled things.

 

 

 

I love Dukes of Hazard but I get really frustrated sometimes when the Dukes have enough evidence to destroy Boss Hogg and Roscoe and redeem themselves but always sit on it and let the corruption that they represent still reign supreme. The Dukes seem to love the chase though. It is like fishing and throwing them back. Seems wrong to me.

 

I guess I can say Elmo on Sesame Street but I never liked him anyways.

 

Carla, Rebecca and Diane on Cheers annoy me at times but that is part of their characters.

 

Still, I have love for these shows and characters and can set these aside to see what I and others loved of these before.


Edited by Tory, May 06 2013 - 11:12 PM.

Hungry enough to eat a turnip and call it a turkey.

 


#29 of 212 OFFLINE   Frank Soyke

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Posted May 07 2013 - 03:28 AM

Nobody mentioned Rose Marie yet. That "I need a fella" crap gets real old. On that note, Morey Amsterdam's tired out vaudeville jokes are just as bad.



#30 of 212 OFFLINE   jimmyjet

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Posted May 07 2013 - 05:45 AM

hi frank,

 

boy, i like those 2.  the dvd show is my favorite sitcom.

 

hi tory,

 

that is exactly why endora does not like darrin - she feels he has taken away sam's identity.

 

only once or twice in the beginning episodes does she voice that.  which is a good example of why i like to watch these shows from beginning to end in chronological order.

 

i do not recall picking up on that, as a kid.



#31 of 212 OFFLINE   David_B_K

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Posted May 07 2013 - 09:01 AM

Nobody mentioned Rose Marie yet. That "I need a fella" crap gets real old. On that note, Morey Amsterdam's tired out vaudeville jokes are just as bad.

 

I don't think I find anybody on Dick Van Dyke annoying aside from Rob's brother. As to Morey Amsterdam, it seems to make perfect sense to me to have "the human joke machine" on a comedy writing staff. Many of his jokes are not funny, but the fact that he had a million of them was (for me).


Edited by David_B_K, May 07 2013 - 09:02 AM.


#32 of 212 OFFLINE   Jack P

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Posted May 07 2013 - 09:27 AM

The Van Dyke Show for me remains the perfect sitcom.    Each character is perfectly cast and fills the role as its intended to and the scenarios always to me spring organically in the tradition of what situation comedy truly represents.      Amsterdam's jokes might be tired but they work because he's playing a comedy writer so naturally you have to have moments of hearing a "gag man" rattle off bad jokes that *don't* get used on the show they're writing for so the head writer can then go, "That's terrible!" (as Rob does more than once).


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#33 of 212 OFFLINE   HenryDuBrow

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Posted May 07 2013 - 10:26 AM

Kojak's fine, that's the way the character's written and supposed to be. It's fiction, as well. Karl Malden's old-school Lt. Stone is a very moralizing character, the bossiness is dangerously close to a severely off-putting trait but since everything else in the show is top notch creation it's bearable. 



#34 of 212 OFFLINE   Ejanss

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Posted May 07 2013 - 10:32 AM

I don't think I find anybody on Dick Van Dyke annoying aside from Rob's brother. As to Morey Amsterdam, it seems to make perfect sense to me to have "the human joke machine" on a comedy writing staff. Many of his jokes are not funny, but the fact that he had a million of them was (for me).

 

He's meant to be the standard 50's burlesque-survivor who ended up as "I got a million of 'em!" Catskills comic. who ended up writing for TV variety--

Just as Carl Reiner based it on his days working for Sid Caesar (three guesses who boss-from-hell Alan Brady is supposed to be), Sally was supposedly based on female gagwriter Selma Diamond, while Buddy came out of Mel Brooks's standup career at the time.



#35 of 212 OFFLINE   moviebuff75

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Posted May 07 2013 - 10:40 AM

Estelle Getty on The Golden Girls. I used to crack up at her character, but now she comes across as extremely mean-spirited, especially towards Dorothy. Some of her wisecracks are still funny, but more often than not, she is just cold-hearted.

 

Barney Fife. Annoying and a pest.


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#36 of 212 OFFLINE   Professor Echo

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Posted May 07 2013 - 11:23 AM

While the temptation to defend is there, I will try not to and shoot I cstill like these characters I list to some extent but I have always felt this way about them:

 

Darren on Bewitched: I know he has been listed by several, the "50s" attitude is part of it but I think it is, and this is why Endora does not like him, his total rejection of Samantha's basic birthright, culture and history. He hates that she is a witch, He is ashamed of it and Samantha tries a lot of the time to deny herself to please him.

 

Ricky Ricardo on I Love Lucy: 50s attitude, jealous, temper tantrums, and every time Lucy had a shot at the "big time" he would pout and force her to give it up. he took her for granted and treated her like a pest. There was love there though. In both cases.

 

Ralph Kramden on honeymooners, always upset, temper tantrum, chidish, abusive, 50s stereotype. What was good though is Alice gave as good as she got.

 

Nice analysis, Tory. I agree with all of this.

 

Ralph Kramden is bearable in the Classic 39, but in some of the "Lost" episodes he is nothing short of a monster to Alice and that's saying something because she is pretty reprehensible in some of those too. The show was much darker prior to the Classic 39 and while it may be more realistic on some levels, it's not always so easy to watch.

 

And I knew it was only a matter of time before someone mentioned Barney Fife. My gf can't stand him and actually prefers the color episodes to the Barney years, which astounds me, but I think there are more Barney  haters out there than we suspect. I can see the reasoning for it at times, but Don Knotts is such a brilliant actor he transcended what some see as the perpetually irredeemable density of Barney. 

 

Carla on CHEERS is another good choice, though I never liked that character. She is so one note nasty that even when they tried to soften her up in certain episodes it never took.

 

As for KOJAK, though there was a time when Telly Savalas started to believe his own publicity and get too full of himself (about the time he was recording song/recitation albums), his portrayal of KOJAK was nothing short of excellent throughout the series. He was a fine, underrated character actor who brought those skills to one of his rare leading parts and helped create a character that refused to become lost and mired in the degradation of 70's New York. At least in its early seasons, he and the show made for exceptional television. 



#37 of 212 OFFLINE   Ron1973

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Posted May 07 2013 - 11:29 AM

Dr. Brackett on Emergency. I never noticed it when I was a kid but now revisiting the series on Netflix, he's very pushy and very much a know it all. He's still likable but he's not the way I remember him being.

 

This one I'll get flamed for. Captain Kirk. I love Star Trek. I've watched it more times than I can name and never get tired of it really. William Shatner is smug imho and it comes across in his acting as Kirk.

 

I can think of a few that have always been annoying:

Goober Pyle....he just wasn't funny on TAGS or Hee Haw either one to me

Joe Besser.....I realize the Stooges were at the end of their run anyway but the sissified stuff of "oh, that hurts" and the like, well, it never was funny.


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#38 of 212 OFFLINE   BobO'Link

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Posted May 07 2013 - 11:59 AM

Many of the characters you guys have mentioned annoyed me from the start - even as a kid.  I've always looked at TV characters differently than most people and, with one exception, have either liked or not most main characters from the first episode I've viewed of a series and that opinion has stuck through the years.  That one exception is Hawkeye from M*A*S*H.  I really liked the character in the first 5-6 seasons (in spite of having seen the film first) but he (or rather Alda) really began to get on my nerves the more and politically motivated/outspoken the character became as the series became more Drama than Comedy and seemed to reflect some "Agenda" Alda was pushing.  I still like those first 6 seasons but now see the early signs of the anoyance the character, and subsequently the show, became.  Because of that I'll not purchase past S6 of that series.



#39 of 212 OFFLINE   Rob_Ray

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Posted May 07 2013 - 12:06 PM

Characters such as Endora on Bewitched were never "endearing" and were never meant to be.  For the most part, what I found annoying as a kid i find annoying as an adult, and those, like Gracie Allen, who could do no wrong as a kid I give a pass to as an adult.


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#40 of 212 OFFLINE   Frank Soyke

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Posted May 07 2013 - 12:56 PM

Celia Weston on Alice. This girl has to be one of the worst actresses ever to grace the small screen. She almost makes me want to see Alice DVD's stalled after Diane Ladd left.






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