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September 30, 2006


Dave Williams

I know how much you love Ted Danson, both professionally and personally. He was wonderful in Cheers and I've paid attention to him since. So...I watched the new show, "Help Me Help You," but I'm afraid the writers may have committed themselves to an endless string of superfluous nutballs-in-therapy jokes. That worked fine for Bob Newhart 25 years ago.And now that I think about it -- this is the same show.But what's infinitely worse is, I couldn't take my eyes off Danson's face! Has he had some bad nip/tuck work or is his skin truly stretching over his face like a roll of Saran Wrap?I hate to be so mindlessly petty but geez...what the hell happened and can a new makeup artist or set lighter fix it?


I've seen Ted Danson twice in person. The first time I was at the shampoo sink next to him at Christophe's salon, and he got up to buy some fresh cut flowers for his wife when a flower girl came through. The next time was at a charity dinner. He struck me as very gracious both times. As to Tim McCarver, what are the odds he will have practiced the proper pronunciation of the Latin players names? His consistent mangling of even the simplest Spanish surname makes me cringe


I'm a lifelong Mets fan myself. After springing for MLB Extra Innings this season and experiencing some of that Vin Scully magic, I'm a quasi-Dodger fan, too. It's nice to see both teams make the post-season.But I'm rooting for the Amazins.

Mike Barer

I got to like the Dodgers because I was a big Sandy Koufax fan. I was a Willie Mays fan too, but the Giants had Juan Marichal and he clobber Roseboro with his bat.Of course I didn't mind Bob Gibson who actually shaved batters with his fastball.

The Master

I don't remember Bob Newhart waking up in his ex-wife's bed on "The Bob Newhart Show", but he did do that on "Newhart", and the villain from "Back to the Future" wasn't in bed with them. Of course, if he woke up in her bed now, the handyman from "Newhart" would be in the bed also. Now if Larry, Darryl & Darryl show up in Danson's therapy group, then you gotta show.I enjoyed Ted Danson's new show, and will set the machine to tape it again next week. (Misrable time slot. Only ABC breaks at 9:30. Who's going to switch off L&O:CI halfway through to watch it?), HOWEVER, if he wants to make a regular viewer of me, Ted MUST keep his shirt on!!! He is a LONG way past having a displayable body.

Frank Weaver

Hm. Not a good sign for a new sitcom and well-known tv star: Issues with face. Issues with body. Script that isnt different enough from old Newhart to help but be compared and lose. Ratings that the execs are reading in two totally opposite directions. Great statement regarding the major know-how and financial investment a network makes. Even I could have seen that coming and done a good Danson vehicle for a lot less.oh - and regarding the comment about Newhart waking up next to his "ex-wife", if you mean in the second of his tv shows, where in the final episode he wakes up next to "emily" from the first show, and it was all a dream, in an interview Newhart says he considered those first two programs he did as one ongoing "Bob Newhart Show". So in a way it wasn't his ex-wife but the whole thing was a dream. A wonderful example of a character and authors and audience all in synch with what they are working on.


I just read how nip/tuck writers are being told to prepare for the scientology episode, but to do research on scientology in order to be respectful of it... god please, can't someone just do something unexpected anymore. What is next, a series about a mafia dons family with the oldest son being a devout scientologist who wants to take over at any cost...hmmm wait a minute...

Paul Duca

Most of the papers where I live (Boston) either offer the TV section by request only or flat out discontinued it. Frankly, it makes sense to me...I haven't really used a hard copy one in years. I just push a button on my remote and I get all the schedule I need.

Mary Stella

Yeah, yeah, congrats on the Dodgers making it into the post-season. So my Phillies came up short by a few games.Thanks for the Tim McGarver site. He makes me want to watch baseball in mute mode.I tried to like Ted Danson's new show. I'll give it another chance. On the other hand, I loved Ugly Betty.


Ken,Ron Fairly just announced his retirement. Now's your chance to return to paradise.You sure would be welcome up here, the time you spent here was some of the best.And his retirement begs the question: how did Ron manage to put in 27 years as a broadcaster? I mean, he seems like a very nice person and all, but geez...McCarver is good compared to this guy...I heard him living in So. Cal. when he and Bob Starr did the Angels, I heard him on long distance AM radio at night doing the Giants on KNBR, and now for the last 14 years here in Seattle. And it's still a mystery to me. I'm addicted to freecell and I'm working on a script. Does this mean I'm a real writer?All the best to you, Ken, I enjoy the blog very much, was referred by Hoffman's site a few months ago.

Ken Levine

Thanks, Mike in Seattle,I would love to rejoin Dave Niehaus and the broadcast. Let the M's know you miss me. Thanks.

The Master

So when Bob woke up next to Emily saying he'd just had a weird dream he was an innkeeper in Vermont, it meant it had all been a dream? Thanks Frank. I've been puzzling over that for a LONG time. Thank heaven you've explained the bleeding obvious to me. Now what the hell is going on at the end of "The Wizard of Oz", and why does my color always go out then?

The Curmudgeon

When my older kids were little, I'd let them listen to Vin Scully call the World Series on the radio at night.Let them? I'd practically insist.Not that you could let them watch the games -- not unless you wanted them to screw up the entire week.And now my older kids are, well, older. The Tim McCarver site will be e-mailed to my Oldest Son forthwith; I'm sure it will be on his AIM away message by evening.Thanks for the link.

Mike Barer

Tim McCarver was Steve Carlton's favorite baterymate on the StLouis Cardinals and later the Phillies. That in itself is rather scary.


Ken,I just found your blog today, and I see that mikeinseattle has already said what I wanted to say regarding the redhead, and politer at that. I heard my seven year old son talking baseball with a friend in the back yard a couple of weeks back - he said "The lead off walk always comes around to score." To which I replied, "unless he doesn't. - Levine's Law." It would be fantastic to have you back on the airwaves here in Seattle, and if pestering the brass can help, I'll start pestering tomorrow.Doug in Seattle

Ken Levine

Thanks, Doug. I'm hoping for a million man march but a few phone calls or emails would help too.

The Omnipotent Q

Ken: as a descendant of Brooklyn Dodger fans on both sides of my family, and as a lifelong resident of Brooklyn, NY, I can tell you the term "Bums" for the Dodgers stopped in September 1957 when the Dodgers vacated Ebbets Field for sunny climates...


hey "the master said"read before you rant: the point was a response to the comment that you made about Newhart's "EX-wife". You missed the point completely. Ex-wife it isnt. It is the SAME wife. Is that too deep for youßMaybe you spend too much time master-ing. Read a bit more carefully.I won't give away the Wizard of Oz to you, I doubt you're ready.

Paul Duca

I guess you and David can bury the hatchet, now that the Yankees have been elminated (written 10/7)


Since we both got commisserations from Mannion, I thought I'd come over and see who my fellow Dodger sufferer (this morning) was.Freaking middle relief.

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    Ken Levine is an Emmy winning writer/director/producer/major league baseball announcer. In a career that has spanned over 30 years Ken has worked on MASH, CHEERS, FRASIER, THE SIMPSONS, WINGS, EVERYBODY LOVES RAYMOND, BECKER, DHARMA & GREG, and has co-created his own series including ALMOST PERFECT starring Nancy Travis. He and his partner wrote the feature VOLUNTEERS. Ken has also been the radio/TV play-by-play voice of the Baltimore Orioles, Seattle Mariners, San Diego Padres.
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