Starting out in radio as a child star member of the REG'LAR FELLERS and later the teenage co-star of TV's MAMA, Dick Van Patten grew into the consummate character actor. Among his roles were the Jack Benny/Eddie Cantor character in the WONDER WOMAN episode featuring the late Christa Helm. Eventually, after siring his own little mini-empire of acting, tennis-playing Van Pattens, he became an outright star as the beloved father on TV's EIGHT IS ENOUGH.
Sunday, June 21, 2015
This year's Booksteve Channel Father's Day TV Father of the Year Award goes to...Inspector Richard Queen as played by David Wayne in the short-lived but top notch TV mystery series from 1975-76, ELLERY QUEEN.
Although the format of the series dictates that he never actually fully solve a crime, Inspector Queen is invariably shown to be a more than competent policeman, and, in fact, given a richer history and background than many supporting characters.
It's also shown that that he is and has been a loving and nurturing single father to Ellery. They fight and argue about a case but then immediately he might ask what Ellery wanted for dinner that evening.
With Jim Hutton's quirky and almost Autism Spectrum-like portrayal of Ellery unlike that of the literature version of the character, the writers and actors managed to take what could well have been a typical smart detective/dumb cop relationship and make it into one of the best father/son combos in TV history...even if the short-lived status of the series means that few people remember that.