Thursday Trivia (on Friday!): Jack Klugman

Jack Klugman as an old dude...oh wait, he IS an old dude!

I came up with the idea for this post from two sources: first, from my dad after some discussion of our Top 5 TV Spoken Word Intros, where I inexplicably forgot The Odd Couple (“On November 13th…”); and from my incredibly intelligent trivia advisor, Dr. Marianthe Colakis, who presented a paper to the Classical Association yesterday comparing Aeschylus’ The Eumenides to Twelve Angry Men. Jack Klugman (who fortunately is still around at age 87). Jacob Joachim Klugman, age 35, appeared as Juror #5 (remember, none of the characters had actual names, just numbers) in Twelve Angry Men, only his third film role. As a result of him being so young at that point (and the rest of the characters being older), he is the last surviving Juror from the film.

Four more bits of trivia about the great Jack Klugman after the jump!

  • As a struggling New York actor, Klugman was roommates with another then-struggling-but-soon-to-be-famous actor, Charles Bronson.
  • Klugman’s first wife? Comedienne Brett Somers of Match Game fame – a show on which Klugman (along with Bob Barker, often in a leather jacket, just sayin’) would make infrequent appearances. They were married for 54 years, but were legally separated for 33 of them.
  • In possibly the oddest awards gaffe other than Rafael Palmeiro winning a Gold Glove, Klugman was nominated for a Tony for Best Supporting Actor in a Musical for his role in Gypsy – in spite of his terrible singing voice.
  • Quincy, M.E., on which Klugman starred as the title (yet first-name-less) character for seven years, was the only one of the three rotating NBC Mystery Movie series to survive after the Mystery Movie was cancelled (although Columbo remains quite famous Macmillan and Wife, not so much), winning the Edgar Award (named after Edgar Allen Poe, natch) from the Mystery Writers of America in their second season.

And because it’s s great, here’s the Odd Couple opening:

Join me next week for another installment of Thursday Trivia (hopefully on a Thursday), where I discuss five bits of trivia on a topic to be decided.

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