Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Hugh Wilson

Great TV & film writer and director; creator of "WKRP in Cincinnati" and "Frank's Place" -- via the Hollywood Reporter. God, he was funny. He learned from the best, at MTM in the 1970s. He wrote for The Bob Newhart Show. He created the still-hilarious WKRP (1978-1982) and the innovative and splendid Frank's Place (22 episodes, 1988). Hell, he launched the Police Academy comedy franchise, writing and directing the first one in 1984. He is also responsible for one of my obscure faves, the hilarious Western parody Rustler's Rhapsody (1985).

He was a huge comic influence; he had a dry, dry wit and incredible timing -- he could get more laughs out of a scene than many could. Frank's Place was way ahead of its time, a beautifully filmed single-camera comic half-hour starring Tim Reid with great characters and dialogue. If you get a chance, watch some.

Now, let's not forget, he also made The Fabulous Teddy Z, and Stroker Ace, and Guarding Tess, and Dudley Do-Right. But hey, it just shows he wasn't afraid to try new things, and he kept on despite the projects that didn't pay off. He certainly has kept me laughing all these years.