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'The Odd Couple'

‘The Odd Couple’

Dec. 4, 1975: Tony Randall, left, throws a fit as a concerned but relaxed Jack Klugman looks on in the “The Odd Couple,” Neil Simon’s comedy playing at the Shubert Theater.

After a successful five-season run of “The Odd Couple” on ABC, Randall and Klugman brought Felix Unger and Oscar Madison to¬† stage.

Los Angeles Times Theater Critic Dan Sullivan wrote:

The annoyances of “The Odd Couple” at the Shubert include the crass canned music between the acts, the muddled crosstalk in the first poker-playing scene and the fact that the theater is miles too big for the play. The splendor of “The Odd Couple” is a dazzling comedy performance by Tony Randall, warmly supported by Jack Klugman.

You may think you know all about Randall and Klugman in The Odd Couple. My mistake too, going in. Wrong. We are thinking of the TV series, good of its kind but nowhere near as rich as Neil Simon’s original play. Randall and Klugman go back to the source here, and it’s lovely to see them acting Felix and Oscar rather than just doing Felix and Oscar shtick. Suddenly we can see these two clowns as live, hurting people — meaning (the mystery of comedy) we laugh twice as hard as on TV. Even care.

This photo by L.A. Times staff photographer Bill Varie accompanied Sullivan’s review on the cover of the View section.

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