Julie Newmar

Julie Newmar Fan Page

Some DOLLS are still Lost....

Julie recently posted a photo from a lost episode of "My Living Doll."

Were the missing episodes of "My Living Doll" destroyed, in some weird act of vandalism? No.

Were they crushed under the rubble of some mythical earthquake at CBS? No, wrong again.

While there was a fire at the Universal Studios Hollywood backlot, it happened in 2008, and most of what was destroyed involved audio masters of recordings issued by their subsidiary and acquired labels including MCA, ABC, A&M and Geffen.

As best as can be determined, "My Living Doll" is simply among the misfiled. With a generally sloppy attitude toward preserving TV shows for future use (most quiz shows, soap operas and talk shows were on videotape which was ERASED to re-use), it's no surprise that a one-season program with little chance for re-run life, would be lost.

Quiz shows? Of about 1750 episodes of "The Match Game" broadcast in the 60's, less than a dozen exist. "Pyramid" quiz shows hosted by Dick Clark are gone. From "Joe Pyne Show" to "Les Crane" and "Wally George," few thought to keep topical talk shows, and what survives is often just a Kinescope made by somebody who was guest on the show and hired someone to preserve it. Quiz host Dennis James kept copies of most of the shows he was on, but when he passed on, all that material disappeared. Sometimes items are willed to libraries or TV museums, but they're for "viewing only," at the locale, and by appointment.

There wasn't home video yet (home VCR's weren't affordable till around 1980) so nobody was thinking, "we can sell these shows..."

Huge chunks or small portions of various filmed TV series are missing, from "Andy's Gang" and "The Goldbergs" to "Have Gone Will Travel." When the latter was finally licensed for DVD, complete seasons had to be cobbled from both 35mm and 16mm prints.

With "My Living Doll," there SHOULD be a set of 35mm masters and a set of 16mm copies in two separate locations. So far, these have not been found. We're talking about vast storerooms, and possibly cans moved to storage areas no longer even known about. One day somebody might unlock a long-forgotten storage facility bought by a new landlord, and there it is, a cache of video treasures.

Back in the day, some "affiliate" TV stations weren't on the network feed, and required 16mm prints that could be screened at some other time, and then returned. These 16mm prints were sometimes returned, sometimes kept at the station for emergency use, discarded, or secretly sold to local collectors. In New York City, Willoughby's camera shop on 32nd Street was notorious for selling 16mm prints of everything from "My Little Margie" to "What Are the Odds."

16mm prints are legal to sell on eBay and not long ago, Julie's episode of "Greatest Show on Earth" was scooped up by somebody for $100 or so. Whether that person is keeping it as an "I have it YOU DON'T" literal "collectors item," or will convert it to DVD or stream it via YouTube, literally remains to be seen.

As for "MY LIVING DOLL," Chertok Productions and Julie are hoping that wayward 16mm prints will turn up at memorabilia shows, thrift shops, or online, and fans will sound the alert so these can be gathered for an official DVD release: "My Living Doll PART TWO."

The show is remembered fondly.

In some cases, weirdly. It's always a bit peculiar to see the "comments" on Julie's Facebook page. One is reminded that while 90% of fans are intelligent and respectful, quite a few are bent in unusual ways.

Some are a bit too sexual (which they can't disguise behind a load of professorial multi-syllable words), are self-admitted mental patients who one hopes can stay in control of themselves, and some are just going to post inappropriate photos or say inappropriate off-topic things no matter what. And yes, some of the people who toss pin-up pictures of Julie even if she's discussing a sitcom or politics, are not randy men but obsessed women.

Thanks to the ones who live brief, pleasant comments, like the first one below, and a muttered WTF to the other three. Four random samples, with names, of course, removed to protect the innocent.

Behind the Scenes

ACTING...involves a special talent for not letting reality interfere.

To viewers of "FOR LOVE OR MONEY," Gig Young is suffering knee pain, but...

He's not in pain, he's on a cramped sound stage, and Kirk is really thinking about what he can say or do to convince Julie to have lunch with him.

AUTOGRAPHED JULIE PHOTOS? SIGN IN....

That's Julie, signing in as the celebrity guest on a "What's My Line" episode.

She's still signing in, and being very nice about the price.

On eBay, a personalized autographed photo is about $100.

Yes, people are willing to buy a photo with somebody else's first name on it. Over at http://julienewmar.com/shop/ you can get one personalized to YOU for $40.

I mention this as a public service. Julie doesn't need the money. She's even mentioned to her Facebook friends that she's in that elite 99% category -- but she only mentioned it to point out that being wealthy doesn't mean one supports Trump.

The President often boasts that the stock market has been stable under his leadership. And you know what a stable smells like.

All seriousness aside, as Steve Allen would say, no politician can really take credit for the stock market, high or low. The stock market can rise and fall on whims, wars and rumors. Some would tell you that a much safer investment is in memorabilia.

Certainly, some people who have been lucky enough to acquire a signed Julie Newmar photo have quadrupled their investment, or better, when they had to sell. (And does Trump take any blame when people lose their jobs and suddenly start hocking stuff??)

How...HIGH...do the prices go on images that savvy people like YOU can find on Julie's website for $40??

Pretty high...

And higher...

And higher...

That's quite a bit higher than what an eBay seller wants for my book with that chapter on Julie in it!

Oh. Donald Trump. If a Julie Newmar autographed photo on eBay can fetch $100, $150, $300 or more...how much did Trump signed photos sell for recently? Oh.

You Bet Your Bippy....

Julie Newmar clips on YouTube continue to get nice comments.

Here's one for the moment in "The Maltese Bippy" when Dan Rowan flirts with Julie.

The channel tries to add clips from time to time, but sometimes, there are surprises. A 40 second scene from "Fools, Females and Fun" (Julie and Dick Sargent) was automatically denied. Huh? It turns out that Universal has spent a lot of time and money creaing digital "footprints" for every inch of even their most obscure films and TV shows. As soon as a clip is floated to YouTube, it is matched, detected and blocked.

YouTube (owned by Google) offers no appeal procedure, and doesn't recognize "fair use." One would think that less than a minute would only encourage interest in this made-for-TV "Love American Style" movie. Universal has no plans to stream it, make it available to a cable TV station, or release it on DVD.

Julie Newmar: "I want to see good acting!" We went to see SHIRLEY KNIGHT

Whem going to Broadway shows with Julie, the most important thing wasn't the spectacle, or being seen at the "hottest ticket in town." It didn't matter if it was a play or a musical, a comedy or a drama.

Julie knew her line, and I had it memorized:

"I want to see good acting!"

So it was, that we sometimes went off-Broadway rather than the Great White Way itself. We walked out at intermission on a play starring a TV legend, with Julie hoping that we could latch onto the second half of something better. We ended up at a revival of an Oscar Wilde production that didn't have a famous name in the cast. What it had, however, was good acting.

Shirley Knight was a good actress. Like Julie, she sought out the masters who could teach her how to be superb at her craft. Knight's mentors included three of the best in the business: Jeff Corey, Lee Strasberg and Uta Hagen. She trained at the Actors Studio, and after "We Have Always Lived in a Castle," she won a Tony for her Marilyn Monroe-influenced turn in "Kennedy's Children."

Julie of course, followed "Lil Abner" with her Tony-award winning part in "Marriage-Go-Round."

"I want to see good acting..." led us to to the Goodman Theatre one night. Horton Foote's "The Young Man from Atlanta" was on the boards, and it featured Rip Torn (who passed on last year) and Shirley Knight, who left us only days ago.

Julie is right; sometimes the most exciting and memorable thing about a play is the acting. You might not remember a line of dialogue, or recall the twist ending that literally brought down the curtain and triggered applause. Instead, you leave with the emotional satisfaction of seeing a great performance.

I don't remember much about Horton Foote's play, but I do remember that Shirley Knight and Rip Torn were brilliant. Afterwards, Julie said, "Let's go backstage." It wasn't out of show-biz friendship. I don't think she'd ever even met Rip Torn before. She said, "it's what you do," if you're also a thespian, and you want to give the highest compliment possible. It's sort of like "my compliments to the chef," but instead of to the waiter, you go back and tell the chef. Shirley was nominated for a Tony for "The Young Man from the South." After seeing Shirley Knight in a production of "A Streetcar Named Desire," Tennessee Williams wrote a play just for her: "A Lovely Sunday at Creve Coeur."

While many performers find their greatest satisfaction on the stage, and the bond between the performer and the viewer is strongest that way, some of their finest work at least remains preserved via film. Shirley Knight was twice nominated for an Oscar, for "Dark at the Top of the Stairs" and "Sweet Bird of Youth," and was critically acclaimed for "Dutchman," and "The Rain People" (Francis Ford Coppola wrote it envisioning Shirley). She also won Emmy awards for television work, and was called upon for everything from "The Outer Limits" to "NYPD Blue" and "Desperate Housewives."

Shirley Knight was not the most famous actress, but she didn't care much about fame itself. She said, "Many people who are very famous are ridiculous. I mean, look at the Kardashians. There are people walking around who don't know who The Beatles were. If you think your food is you want to be famous, you're going to starve to death. Your food has to be that you want to do good work and you want to become better at what you do.

She was better at what she did than quite a lot of more famous TV and movie stars. Some people want to go to a show to see somebody famous, like a TV star with limited live acting experience. Others, like Julie Newmar, say "I want to see good acting." Good acting: SHIRLEY KNIGHT.

Caricatures Then and Now

Once upon a time (or a Russian) caricature artists, trained classically, offered fluid pen and ink lines. Here's an example: Julie (and company) immortalized before the opening of "Once There was a Russian," co-starring Walter Matthau and Albert Salmi.

The old-fashioned "flattering" heterosexual brand of caricature is now so old-fashioned it doesn't even exist.

The idea is to mix things up, bend the gender, and go for outrage. And then, as RuPaul would phrase it, "sashay away," leaving nothing but admiring gasps.

One of Julie's idols in the world of caricature is "RISKO," who resists the old drawing styles and scares up something unique instead. BOO!

You didn't know Julie had pale blue icy eyes? A squidgy nose that resembles Sam "Gunga Din" Jaffe? That her mouth looks like she was eating a pint of strawberries too fast? Well, that's the NEW look, a "new wave" in caricature, and still has the viewer knowing it's Julie Newmar.

Doesn't it? How about a different view? Below: the same artist, but a different take.

A conventional view of women is that they have breasts. That's a bit 20th Century isn't it?

The fact is, if a woman can be a super hero, maybe she can have the same chest development as a male? That would be squared pectorals, and a flat behind. Strange? Maybe even scary? Well, that's the way modern, edgy caricature works. BOO!

Both of the above are capturing Julie in "super hero" mode, because fans love it. Most any Facebook post Julie makes, no matter the topic, will have a chunk of "You were the BEST CATWOMAN" comments. Their cuteness needs to be rewarded with Catwoman cat-ricatures.

However, there's another side to the actress. The garden side. But again, there's no reason to be traditional about it, and shoot for any kind of glamour approach, as the Daily News artist did in promoting "Once There Was a Russian."

With full use of color, and spurning traditional notions of heterosexual beauty, here's Julie in a shapeless dress. This caricature has her in traditional old lady gray hair, raisin-drooped eyes, lips in a doleful camel-like pout, and a moose-jaw chin. Yet people would instantly say "That's Julie Newmar, isn't it?"

Three works about, all from one caricaturist.

Anyone buying the old fluid style of caricature? The Margo Feiden Gallery (which sold the NY Times theater caricatures) is probably gone by now. Who pay thousands for a framed lithograph? There never was a gallery for the Daily News caricatures, like the item you see up top.

Of course with magazines and newspapers disappearing, and cartoon art seeming to only sell to "The New Yorker," the Internet has become a place for anyone and everyone to offer challenging caricatures. The Internet is open to unconventional views of what beautiful women look like, or what the human body should or shouldn't resemble.

Some aren't so sure about all of this. There are some that don't like graffiti. Some question why RuPaul and his fellows appear in "woman face" when there's no longer "yellow face" or "blackface" anymore. Still, art is very much in the eye of the beholder. In fact, now that there's Photoshop, people can download and alter the art to suit their own perspective. Yes, that's another challenge, but the art world is always enthusiastic about being stood on its ear. Just ask Van Gogh.

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