Phyllis Diller

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The Wednesday Playlist: Americans Finale, ABC's Tools, HBO's Manhunt

Keri Russell

It's May Day (as in: mayday!) for the Russian spies — and just about everyone else — in the taut first-season finale of FX's emotionally engrossing The Americans (Wednesday, 10/9c). Chivalry is not dead, even in the estranged not-quite-marriage of embedded KGB operatives Philip and Elizabeth Jennings (Matthew Rhys and Keri Russell), as they prepare for a dangerous mission that could be a set-up, with lots of jockeying and posturing between husband (who wants to protect while serving) and wife (who's adamant about following orders to the letter) about who's going to risk everything, including their "normal" family life, to walk into what might be a trap. read more

The Tuesday Playlist: TV's Funny Ladies, Pre-Inauguration Specials, Face Off Returns, More

Pioneers of Television

If I counted right, you can hear Betty White say "I'm the luckiest broad on two feet" at least three times during the course of the "Funny Ladies" retrospective that kicks off a new season of PBS' Pioneers of Television (check tvguide.com listings). Who could or would want to doubt her? The evidence is right there in clips and stills from this living legend's earliest TV appearances in the 1940s and '50s, establishing her as a versatile broadcaster and gung-ho performer even before Lucille Ball made us fall in love with her — and blazing a trail for all who would follow.

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Legendary Comedienne Phyllis Diller Dead at 95

Phyllis Diller

Phyllis Diller, the legendary comedienne who paved the way for many female comics, has died. She was 95.

Diller died Monday at her Los Angeles home surrounded by family, TMZ reports. Diller had reportedly fallen recently, but the accident isn't believed to be associated with her death.

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Exclusive: Phyllis Diller Returns to The Bold and the Beautiful

Darlene Conley and Phyllis Diller

We'll have what she's having! TV Guide Magazine has learned that legendary comic — and 94-year-old fireball — Phyllis Diller is heading back to the CBS soap opera The Bold and the Beautiful for a two-day ...
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Comedy Isn't Pretty: Phyllis Diller Takes a Long Look at Her Career

Phyllis Diller

Her laugh is as legendary as her one-liners. A cross between Burgess Meredith as the Penguin and Sesame Street's Count, Phyllis Diller's signature cackle cracks up anyone within earshot. Unfortunately, it's impossible to hear (or even spell) in print, which is one of the many reasons why you should see Goodnight, We Love You, a loving and revealing documentary about the groundbreaking comedian that arrives on DVD today. In between riotous clips from her 2002 farewell concert, Diller offers an unprecedented peek at her private life and her outrageous wardrobe. TVGuide.com joked with the octogenarian stand-up about her five decades in showbiz, her plastic surgery and her ill-fated Playboy spread. TVGuide.com: Hello, Ms. Diller? Phyllis Diller: Hello, Raven? Oh, you're a lady! [Laughs.] I heard your name and figured you would be a man. TVGuide. read more

What do you think about the ...

Question: What do you think about the promos NBC is using for The Office? To me they do not show what that series is about at all! The ads make it look like it's just a love story, which it is not. They don't show one bit of humor, and worse yet, they show only two characters, Jim and Pam, and in one ad they also called them the stars, which is either false advertising or they have changed the format of the show. Isn't NBC afraid that they are going to alienate a lot of potential viewers with this kind of advertising? Those who tune in because they like the appeal of the love story will be disappointed. Those who would be interested in The Office as it was (and hopefully still is) wouldn't tune in at all if they had only these ads to go by — I know I wouldn't have. What is NBC thinking? Are they trying to get rid of The Office when it's just getting started? Answer: Judging a show by its promos is always dangerous, and I'll admit I haven't been paying attention to many of the fall ... read more

How The Book of Daniel Came to Be

The Book of Daniel's Susannah Thompson, Aidan Quinn and Alison Pill

I'm pretty sure I'm still dreaming. As far as I can tell, this dream started a year and a half ago, so it's actually still June 2004, it's 3:30 in the morning, and I "wake up" with the first scene vividly playing out in my head: His daughter's been arrested. This guy (I hadn't even come up with names yet) has to go pick up his teenage daughter at a police station, way down in Riverdale, in the middle of the night. What the heck was she doing in Riverdale?! He's worried to death. He's angry. He's scared. But more than anything... he's uncomfortable. He is a WASP, after all — they don't go to police stations. And certainly not in the middle of the night! By the time he gets her and his wife home, it's dawn; they have to get ready for church. As he sits alone in his car, he reaches for the biggest obstacle in his life right now — his Vicodin. Then... Smash Cut to: the Pulpit. He's a priest! That's it. That's my way in. I finally found my way into a world that's bee read more

Who was the woman on The Gong ...

Bang a Gong: master of ceremonies Barris

Question: Who was the woman on The Gong Show panel? I think she was a singer at one time. Thank you.


Answer: I'll take a wild guess here, assume you don't have Phyllis Diller or Dr. Joyce Brothers in mind and answer with jazz singer Jaye P. Morgan, often introduced by cocreator and host Chuck Barris as "juicy." And I'm sure the lady would object to your "singer at one time" classification, since she told the Los Angeles Times in 1997 that despite her various entertainment credits (movies, TV, stage, comedy), "[W]hen I get up in the morning, I get up as a singer."

Morgan, born Mary Margaret but dubbed J.P. when she took the job of class treasurer in high school, started her entertainment education at the age of 3 or 4 in a family act and eventually worked her way up to hit records ("The Longest Walk" and "That's All I Want from You" in the mid-'50s), work in stage musicals, numer read more

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