Saturday, February 27, 2010

New (Old) Obsession: "Rhoda"

It's been a gratifying week, with a flurry of freelance coming my way, at last, in addition to working 30 hours for the U.S. Census and making progress on the proposal for my memoir with Liz Derringer.

But when I needed to give my fingers—and feet—a rest, I've had a blast watching reruns of "Rhoda," starring Valerie Harper, which is now airing on "baby-boomer" cable network ALN. The spin-off of "The Mary Tyler Moore Show" ran from 1974-1978. Along with 50 million others, I remember watching the classic episode where Rhoda has to take the New York subway to her own wedding in the Bronx. What a blast seeing the scenes shot on the Upper West Side, and in the subway, in 1974 NYC. Graffiti everywhere!

That episode became one of the highest-rated events in 1970s television, at the time ranking second only behind the birth of Little Ricky on "I Love Lucy." Harper won an Emmy as Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series in 1975...

Season pass is now going strong on Tivo—which also picked up her performance in the Neil Simon movie "Chapter Two," starring James Caan and an Oscar-nominated Marsha Mason, where a slimmed-down, no-NYC-accented Harper played her best friend.

And how ironic... Valerie Harper began previews last week on Broadway, here in New York, with the lead role in "Looped," a biopic of Tallulah Bankhead. I's gonna have to see that one.