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He & She tv show
He & She
by Billy Ingram

He & She (1967-68) was a groundbreaking CBS sitcom, the bridge between That Girl and The Mary Tyler Moore Show.

Starring Richard Benjamin and Paula Prentiss, a married couple in real life, this show had an amazing cast including Jack Cassidy as brash TV star / neighbor Oscar North, a character very much like Ted Baxter. In fact, Cassidy was offered the role of the newscaster on The Mary Tyler Moore Show but turned it down - although he did appear as Ted Baxter’s brother.

Also on hand: Kennth Mars (The Producers) and Hamilton Camp (The Incredible Hulk). Created by Leonard Stern (Get Smart) most of the episodes are directed by Jay Sandrich who was one of the primary reasons The Mary Tyler Moore Show was so well executed.

Prior to this TV was swelling up with way out sitcoms like Bewitched, I Dream of Jeannie, and Batman. He & She was an attempt to bring a more intelligent approach to comedy and it succeeded brilliantly. Too bad it didn’t catch on, airing for only a single season.

Both warm and funny, He & She was the first and only weekly series role for the great Broadway musical comedy star Jack Cassidy. “The rewards of comedy are instant,” Cassidy was quoted as saying. “I have no desire to look out into an audience to see if there are any tears.”

Jack Cassidy watched his son David shoot to superstar status in 1970 on The Partridge Family. “If I would have stayed with Evelyn [Evelyn Ward],” Cassidy said about his teen idol offspring. “My son, David [David Cassidy], might have turned out better. I wanted to raise him but she wouldn't give him up. That's all right. I don't care if David doesn't want to see me. I have three other sons who still love their father.”

Turning up quite a bit as a guest star on a wide range of programs in the 1970s, Jack Cassidy had three memorable turns on Columbo. IMDB: Other memorable performances include appearances in "Barnaby Jones," "Matt Helm," "McCloud," "Hawaii Five-O," "Alias Smith and Jones" and "Bonanza" as well as comedic interludes in "Love, American Style", "The Carol Burnett Show", "Laugh-In" and "The Mary Tyler Moore Show." Jack Cassidy was tragically killed in 1976 when a lit cigarette burned the sofa he was sleeping on.

He & She also had a pretty nifty theme song by Jerry Fielding, one of my favorite TV composers, responsible for such classic themes as The Chicago Teddy Bears, McMillan and Wife, and Kolchak: The Night Stalker.

Richard Benjamin went on to star in another short-lived but much loved sitcom Quark (1977-78), a sci-fi sendup on NBC.

He & She was shot in Los Angeles but set in New York. “It's the texture of New York that people miss by filming elsewhere,” Richard Benjamin said. “There are layers and layers of character - even in the pavement - that you can't get anywhere else. And the speed that the people move. It's so different from other places.”

This episode of He & She is entitled ‘Deep In The Heart of Taxes.’

 

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He & She TV Show

“Daytime TV and talk shows also helped me. I am fascinating on all those programs. Full of witty remarks and sly innuendo which I have been preparing all day. Anyway, the ladies love it, and when I tour in a play or musical I do quite well at the box office.” - Jack Cassidy

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