Friday, November 01, 2019

Friday Questions

Let’s welcome in November with Friday Questions.

Jeff starts us off:

I recently had the opportunity to see a local production of The Odd Couple. Amateur/semi-pro actors, but very well staged and performed. Prior to seeing the play, I took the time to re-watch the 1968 movie and the first two episodes of the television sitcom. I enjoyed them all, and am wondering if you have any thoughts about the various incarnations of this classic and stage to screen to television in general?

THE ODD COUPLE is one of my favorite plays. Unfortunately, I never saw it on Broadway with the original cast – Walter Matthau and Art Carney, but did see the movie with Matthau and Jack Lemmon, which was terrific.

But to me, Tony Randall & Jack Klugman from the TV series are “the” Felix & Oscar.

Years ago, there was a stage production of THE ODD COUPLE at the now-demolished Schubert Theatre in LA with Randall & Klugman reprising the roles. How cool was that???

It played like the all-time greatest episode of the series.

Every so often the play gets revived on Broadway. A number of years ago there was a version with Nathan Lane & Matthew Broderick. Nathan Lane as Oscar. I love Nathan Lane, but can not picture that at all.

Michael has two questions.

With yet another round of streaming services from Apple, ATT, Disney, etc starting soon, will you even try to keep up with all of the new shows being created by big-name talent?

Unless it’s a big name talent I really want to see (and I can’t think of a single one at the moment), I tend not to watch new shows. I just wait for enough people to recommend a specific show and then I go back and sample it.

It’s not like the old days where if you missed an airing of a show it was gone. Now you can access anything, binge-watch to catch up, so why sift through a million shows when I can just focus on the cream of the crop? Word-of-mouth is the best publicity.

Somewhat related, do you think it is inevitable we will end up with everyone paying for 5-10 streaming services instead of just subscribing to a cable package plus 1-2 streaming services?

No. I think the 10 streaming services will combine in various configurations and when the dust settles we’ll still be paying for only 2 or 3 streaming services.

If there’s any kind of recession and people have to tighten their belts, what’s are the first luxuries to go? A streaming service and satellite radio would be my guess.  

And finally, richfigel asks:

Aloha, Ken! What do you think about the constant use of EXTREME CLOSE-UPS in TV shows and movies these days? In the classic movie comedies and sitcoms, wider shots allowed audiences to see actors use their whole bodies. Now we get to see every wrinkle, blemish and nose hair blown up in high def -- not flattering for actors. Plus, they could be in two different places and you wouldn't even know it since it's all cross-cutting from face to face shots. Got any theories why so many directors are doing this?

No theories other than that seems to be the current style.  I find it disconcerting but not as bad as the hand-held camera trend where the screen was always jiggling.  People loved FRIDAY NIGHT LIGHTS.  I couldn't make it through one episode without getting nauseous.

But I digress...

Yes, with Hi-Def those crows feet and worry lines become more apparent. Especially in extreme close ups.  Time for another Botox shot. 

For TV comedy the unwritten rule is a close-up includes the shoulders. Any closer and it feels too close, as if the actor is invading the viewer’s space.  When that happens, comedy goes away. 

I’m not a fan of extreme close-ups unless they’re there for a very specific reason – e.g. an extreme reaction to something.

To me the best use of close-ups was in the 1957 movie TWELVE ANGRY MEN directed by Sidney Lumet.

Twelve jurors are sequestered in a room and tension mounts as they argue the case.

If you watch that film, you’ll see that the opening section features all master shots. And as the movie progresses the camera slowly pushes in. The wide masters give way to tight masters, then three-shots, then two-shots, then singles, then close-ups, and by the end extreme close-ups. The walls of the room seem to be closing in on you. You start to really feel the tension along with a sense of claustrophobia. As magnificent as that script by Reginald Rose is, I think the shot selection really makes that movie.

Happy November. Please ask your Friday Questions. I’ll answer as many as I can. Thanks.


blinky said...

Speaking of close-ups, Directv had the playoffs in 4K. It was pretty cool but the close-up were a bit of too much information. The extreme close-up of Justin Verlander was like the extreme close-ups in Ren and Stimpy: gross.You could see every pore and each hair of his face stubble.

The Bumble Bee Pendant said...

Seems it's harder to find the right "Oscar" then it is to find the right "Felix"

Nathan Lane? Matthew Perry?

Dennis Hartin said...

I got to see Randall and Klugman in The Sunshine Boys on Broadway. It was after Klugman's throat surgery, so l they had to accommodate his inability to project. It was still a great evening, though.

Loosehead said...

In Twelve Angry Men, the room is literally closing in on you - they designed the set so that, as the film progressed, they could make the walls close in to increase the sense of claustrophobia.

Peter said...

November 2019. We've finally reached the era Blade Runner was set in.

But there are no flying cars, no giant floating digital billboards, no replicants, no Pan-Am, and sadly no Rutger Hauer.

McAlvie said...

Recently re-watched the original 12 Angry Men and I agree. It was just a top notch classic all the way. No fancy effects, just one room and 12 characters. The character arcs were fascinating.

There was a remake which I only recall seeing once on tv. I don't even remember the cast except I think Tony Danza was the guy with tickets to the game. As a rule I don't bother with remakes at all. I don't see the point and they often miss that magic something that made the original a classic. In this case it actually was pretty good, though, and being more contemporary included a more diverse cast; so in that respect the remake had a purpose. It didn't achieve the iconic status of the original, but was a good movie.

Anonymous said...

Did you know of Garry Marshall's stunt casting spitball of suggesting Dean Martin for Felix?

AndrichardWS said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

For fun, what was each of the Twelve Angry Men angry about, in twelve words or less??

E. Yarber said...

Jack Webb favored extreme close-ups in the early episodes of DRAGNET because the TV image of that time was so fuzzy it was the only way to get a clear view of the actor. (Also probably cut down on scenery costs if all you had to film was a succession of heads).

VP81955 said...


But we do have the World Series champion Washington Nationals, something no one would have predicted in 1982.

CRL said...


By coincidence, that production of 12 Angry Men featured Jack Lemmon as Juror #8. George C. Scott played Juror #3. James Gandolfini played Juror #6. Tony Danza played Tony.

VincentS said...

Tony Randall said that Art Carney was the best Felix. And Carney later did a revival playing Oscar!

Mike Doran said...

Here and There:

- I once read an interview wherein Tony Randall said about The Odd Couple (quote approximate):

I've seen high school productions which were excellent. You can't hurt that play.
(Emphases mine.)

- Digital tech has done wonders with old B/W pics from as far back as the '30s and '40s.
Until I was able to see old B/W on a widescreen in hi-def, I never realized just how many actors wore toupees - in some closeups, you can even make out the lace in the front (try it some time - it's fun!).
Even more fun are fight scenes: the two stars square off, dig in, and next thing you know you're watching two other guys who look nothing like the stars whaling the tar out of each other in medium to wide shots (great fun at parties!).

- What I mainly remember about the Twelve Angry Men cable redo was how Reginald Rose turned Juror #10, Ed Begley's white bigot, into a black militant (Mykelti Williamson); now that was interesting.
On the misfire side, the theatrical had Rudy Bond as the judge, doing the jury charge as though he were totally bored by the whole thing - far more effective that the near-tearful perf by that actress whose name escapes me at the moment (sorry).

Tommy Raiko said...

"I think the 10 streaming services will combine in various configurations and when the dust settles we’ll still be paying for only 2 or 3 streaming services."

I suspect you're right, but I just don't know how long it'll be before that sort of consolidation happens. But I noticed that market research company Civic Science, in an article they released on the about-to-launch Disney+ service, did frame some questions about the number of streaming services a customer might have at once, so there's at least some awareness of potential "SVOD fatigue" as more and more of these services get launched...

thomas tucker said...

I went to a taping of The Odd Couple back in the day. I remember well that Tony Randall came out to warm up the audience himself, and was hilarious.

mike schlesinger said...

We did see the Lane/Broderick version of ODD COUPLE (bought the tickets nine months in advance--a then record), and Nathan was absolutely spot-on. No one does New York frustration and angst like he does, and his timing and delivery were impeccable as always. He also rocked a Hawaiian shirt over a T-shirt like he always dresses that way. Of the many times I've seen it on stage, he was by far the best Oscar.

Joseph Scarbrough said...

I can agree in regards to Tony Randall and Jack Klugman - even though I have seen bits of the 1968 movie, and will say that Walter Matthau was actually really good in the role of Oscar, but then again, Matthau was always good in those kind of curmudgeonly roles, much like David Ogden Stiers was always good in those snobbish kind of roles.

That being said, despite my usual preference for the more cinematic feel and overall production style of single-camera, laugh track-only sitcoms, I feel like that first season of THE ODD COUPLE feels far too "generic" and nothing really stands out about it (not that it's a bad season, mind you, but nothing really stands out about it). Once they switched to multi-camera in front of an audience, that's when the show really came to life, and it amazes me how both Felix and Oscar almost feel like entirely different characters - especially Felix; Tony Randall really let lose and made the character seem so much more wide-eyed, idealistic, and manic, as opposed to his more subdued, reserved, and uptight portrayal in the first season. And, of course, Tony and Jack's rapport with one another really shone through the cameras' lenses moreso in the multi-cam seasons, where they clearly were not only feeding off of the audience's energy, but were really able to play off of each other more effectively - their chemistry was amazing, and it's nice to know they ended up becoming the best of friends off camera as well.

I never really bothered checking out Matthew Perry's reboot, but I've read opinion pieces about it, saying it would never catch on, because back in the 70s, divorce was still such a taboo subject, that the premise alone of two divorced men sharing an apartment was "edgy" and "risque" for its time, whereas in the 21st century, where divorce is so much more common, and not even a touchy subject, there's nothing inherently tongue-in-cheek about the premise anymore.

richfigel said...

Regarding extreme close-ups, what really drove me nuts was Kevin Bacon's TV series, "The Following." There were handheld, shaky-cam shots of actors' ears, half a face, even the backs of their heads! My theory is directors might be doing it because so many younger viewers are watching on small screens -- phones and tablets. Yet at the same time, older viewers are sitting at home watching shows on bigger and bigger high def TVs. Also, many of the newer TV series rely on snarky quips and less on physical comedy.

Cary Ginell (VC On Stage) said...

I once saw an all-female version of "12 Angry Men," retitled "12 Angry Women." I don't know why the playwright's publishers allowed this. Women saying the lines written for men just doesn't work. It was embarrassingly bad. What do you think of the various incarnations of "The Odd Couple" changing genders and ethnicities?

Wendy M. Grossman said...

Joseph Scarborough: I think the idea that two divorced men sharing an apartment was somehow risque in the 1970s is absurd. Divorce was hardly new at that time - hell, my *grandparents* got divorced, and that was in like the early 1920s. Mary Tyler Moore living alone as a career professional and having sexual relationships - *that* was new ground for its time.

Plus, bear in mind that the movie was a hit and well-known and the play had been around before that. The problem with the modern reboot was that Matthew Perry just wasn't any good as Oscar. He seems to want to play these slobby uncouth guys, rather than capitalize on his undeniable ability to play more contained, uncertain characters (ie, Chandler). It's an understandable desire, but it does his career no favors.


Unknown said...

I blame extreme closeups on Wayne and Garth

Jahn Ghalt said...

See the link for a fun survey of the Odd Couple TV Series:

It mentions an occasional "prank" to wind up the suits:

ABC was always worried about the issue of homosexuality. As a prank, Klugman and Randall would occasionally provide improvised dialogue to send to the network just to get them worked up.

So a Friday Question:

You have podcasted how you concealed Shelley Long from the end of a Frasier episode (to avoid a spoiler promo).

Except for that, what other pranks have you witnessed (or instigated) on a sitcom?

J Lee said...

Blogger Joseph Scarbrough said...


I feel like that first season of THE ODD COUPLE feels far too "generic" and nothing really stands out about it (not that it's a bad season, mind you, but nothing really stands out about it). Once they switched to multi-camera in front of an audience, that's when the show really came to life, and it amazes me how both Felix and Oscar almost feel like entirely different characters - especially Felix; Tony Randall really let lose and made the character seem so much more wide-eyed, idealistic, and manic, as opposed to his more subdued, reserved, and uptight portrayal in the first season.

Neil Simon agreed -- He hated the first season of "The Odd Couple" because of its sedate nature, but three years later was convinced by his daughter to take a second look at the show by his daughter, who told him it was funny now. The result was Simon's cameo as himself in a Season 5 episode of the show (where Felix ends up ghost-writing Oscar's Broadway play reviews).

The interesting thing with the Garry Marshall shows of the period was that "The Odd Couple" got much better in three-camera format, but "Happy Days" got much worse when it went from single camera to three camera. Klugman, Randall and the rest of the cast knew how to play to an audience, and the audience themselves didn't go wild over every single line the characters said, to the point the writers and actors didn't have to work hard to be funny. They'd get a reaction line no matter what they put in the script. The negative part of that didn't hit home until the series went to syndication, and the weak scripts repelled viewers once the novelty of Fonz-mania died down. In contrast, "The Odd Couple" gained fans in reruns, as people who weren't home Friday's in the early 1970s discovered the show.

tb said...

Ken - I keep seeing something on sit coms that I don't get: People are talking - then we suddenly have an exterior shot, and music-then right back to the same conversation! Not the next day, or that night or anything. No passage of time. Not even a joke we need to laugh at or let breath. What's going on? Why? I keep seeing this and it just seems bizarre to me.

Sue T. said...

Question: I have watched on youtube some completed TV pilots that were never aired because the shows were recast before their network premieres. For example, ALL IN THE FAMILY (recasting of the son-in-law character), BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER (recasting of the best friend character), and DICK VAN DYKE (recasting of the lead actor). Can you suggest any other popular TV series whose pilot episodes were recast and remade, and thus never aired?

Peter said...


And we also had the glorious sight of the crowd at the Nats stadium booing the Trump 2020 advert on the Jumbotron just days after booing Trump himself.

Ralph C. said...

The Twilight Zone (original series) used close-ups effectively in episodes like Eye Of The Beholder.

Liggie said...

-- HD close-ups: When the NHL began including HD in its "Center Ice" package (out-of-market games subscription package), a commercial showed players wearing mud masks, sitting in tanning booths, plucking their eyebrows with a tweezer, a goalie getting his hair cut (while still wearing his mask), and one player asking "Does this make my butt look big?".

-- "12 Angry Men": Our high school staged simultaneous male and female ("12 Angry Women") versions of the play, so the female students wouldn't get shut out of drama club credits that semester.

-- Streaming services: Cable companies could see "subscription fatigue" as a way to regain market share. Top of my head, they could reduce the prices of basic/skinny bundles, offer comprehensive add-on packages (sports, movies, Spanish) at a reasonable rate, and market them as a one-stop, one-password place for all your viewing. "Want movies but don't want to subscribe to three different services? Add our package and get the (HBO, Showtime, Starz) for just $X a month!" "Want more sports than ESPN, FS1 and your local sports net? Add our sports package and get (tennis/hockey/outdoor/baseball/niche) sports for just $Y a month!"

I know, there would have to be some renegotiating with big networks like ESPN, but if they can get decent rates for subscribers, this is an opportunity to reclaim eyeballs.

Anonymous said...

“McAlvie11/01/2019 7:09 AM
Recently re-watched the original 12 Angry Men and I agree. It was just a top notch classic all the way......”

First version (1954), like Marty, was made for TV

Nice credits, too

Starring Robert Cummings as Juror #8
Franchot Tone as Juror #3
Edward Arnold as Juror #10 Paul Hartman as Juror #7
John Beal as Juror #2 Walter Abel as Juror #4
with George Voskovec as Juror #11 Joseph Sweeney as Juror #9 Bart Burns as Juror #6
Norman Fell as Foreman Lee Phillips as Juror #5 Will West as Juror #12
Vincent Gardenia as Bailiff
Note: Sweeney and Voskovec repeated their parts in the 1957 film.
Production personnel
Written especially for Studio One by Reginald Rose
Produced by Felix Jackson
Directed by: Franklin Schaffner


Rose later created The Defenders tv series... starring E G Marshall

Rory W said...

Not related to Friday questions, but wanted to share that Cleveland Indians radio voice Tom Hamilton is among eight finalists for the BBHOF's Ford C. Frick Award.

“A swing and a drive, waaaay back and … gone!”

ReticentRabbit said...

Here's a Friday question, Ken: when you write an episode centering on a "villain," a Frank Burns or a Roy Biggins, is it challenging to move that character to the center from the fringes? Or is it kind of fun because those characters are somewhat less featured and it's a chance to develop them more?

Jahn Ghalt said...

Here's another question for Ken (or anyone):

It seems that Neil Simon did not write any of the Odd Couple episodes. Why not?

Does anyone know of an instance where a playwright wrote for an adapted TV series?

And a hypothetical:

Ken has stated that Simon was no stranger to rewriting on the fly for plays- supposing Neil Simon DID write an episode for the Odd Couple series - how might that have worked out?

Jonathan Teigland said...

I saw a production of The Odd Couple in Cedar Rapids, of all places, starring Jamie Farr as Oscar and William Christopher as Felix. I was a teenager at the time (this was the mid 90s) but I remember really liking it and being thrilled to see them on stage.

MikeN said...

I knew he was in Oceans 11, but Mr Roper was in The Odd Couple?

Cary, they could have just called it 12 Women.

As for cable streaming, I predict Comcast will add these streaming services to their box, and you can just pay them as a middleman.

ESPN's $8 per month per cable subscriber, is on borrowed time.

PJ said...

I watched Twelve Angry Men in a high school English class. I don't remember exactly why, but I think we watched it around the same time as To Kill a Mockingbird.

CarolMR said...

I guess I'm in the minority - I enjoyed the first season of The Odd Couple more than the following seasons, especially BECAUSE Felix and Oscar didn't let loose and weren't as manic.

Joseph Scarbrough said...

@Wendy Yeah, but keep in mind, this was back in the days when television still had Standards & Practices they had to observe in regards of what could or couldn't be shown or discussed on the air. Not just the subject of divorce itself, but Garry Marshall has mentioned that toilets couldn't be shown on TV back then, hence why whenever a shot took place in Oscar's bathroom, we saw no toilet.

Plus, this was ABC, they were still the "family-friendly" channel: they were so afraid Felix and Oscar would be perceived as being a gay couple, hence why not only were mandated to have active dating lives, but their ex-wives became recurring characters.

Astroboy said...

In the vain of too many extreme close-ups: If I never have to see a character (or characters) do an entire scene while a steady-cam is constantly circling (and circling and circling...) around them for the entire scene I will die a happy viewer. God, that annoys me, because it almost never serves any purpose in enhancing the story telling, unless making me physically ill is the intention.

Breadbaker said...

Not a Friday question, but a recommendation for you, Ken. I just finished the audiobook of Rob Neyer's PowerBall, about a single, inconsequential game between a terrible Oakland A's team and the eventual World's Champion Houston Astros in 2017. He takes the various events of the game and uses them to riff on a number of topics about how the game of baseball was played at that exact moment, everything from economics to uses of statistics to changes in strategy to how the availability of cameras has changed the information available in the dugout to the size of ballplayers to the length of games. Some of the information was surprising and new to me (and I follow baseball pretty intensely) and it's very well put together. I actually listened to the audiobook, read by Neyer himself, and I enjoyed that as I often enjoy audiobooks done by the author, because if there's an inflection they intended in their prose, you're not going to miss it. I think you'd enjoy it, if you haven't already read it.

Astroboy said...

Friday Question: Ken, in your opinion, what announcer working today, radio or TV has the best home run call? I watch a lot of baseball highlight videos and I find them all annoying. I'm a Yankee fan, so that makes it worse. Every time I hear 'seeya!!" or some nonsense like: It's "Glebberday" after a Torres home run I want to puke...

Fred said...

Friday Question: There seems to be some confusion and a number of rumors circulating as to why Farrah Forke left "Wings" after only two seasons. Do you know the exact reason? Was it her own decision to leave, or did the writers feel her relationship with Brian had played itself out, or was it something else?

Dixon Steele said...

MikeN, many times have you been divorced?

Mike Doran said...

The story's been told many times (once by Neil Simon himself) about how the playwright got euchred when his then-agency sold The Odd Couple film rights to Paramount for a comparative pittance (even by '60s standards) - and how the deal included TV series adaptation rights.
Because of this, Neil Simon never made a dime from the TV series - or from its afterlives in syndication and home video (which latter didn't even exist back then).
Mr. Simon retained some bitterness about all this, to the extent of sort-of personally boycotting the Odd Couple TV series for most of its run, until he was talked into making that cameo late in the run.
(I don't know if Paramount ever made some kind of ex post facto settlement with Simon in later years; if anybody here knows anything, here we all are …).

thirteen said...

Re Randall and Klugman: I remember when Tony Randall's theater company was doing Inherit the Wind in London with George C. Scott, who died just as things were starting up. As a result, Randall's company was facing bankruptcy. In comes Klugman with an offer to do The Odd Couple in the West End for six weeks at no pay, which saved Randall's bacon.

It wasn't all talk with those two guys.

scottmc said...

Not sure if this qualifies as a Friday question but I am curious about a Becker episode which you directed. The episode involved two groups of extras, a group of construction workers lining up to use the the diner's bathroom and a group of Backer's neighbors in the lobby of the building. Was the number of extras in both decided upon before you began working on the episode? Is there a way of directing a scene to make it look like there are more extras? Could one of the construction workers have doubled as one of the neighbors,if necessary? Is a scene with a lot of extras any more difficult to direct?

DARON72 said...

I apologize if this has already been asked as a Friday question but I would love Ken's take on eight turkey day themed episodes of "Friends" being shown at your local megaplex this Thanksgiving as one of those Fathom Events.

Anonymous said...

Tried to watch the old version of 12 Angry men on the link supplied here.
A favorite of mine.
But with the almost continued breaks for online ads it is unwatchable.
Truly sad. For some odd reason always had a fondness for Robert Cummings.
From what I saw his cahracters almost reluctance to buck the rest at the very beginning seemed a bit more "realistic" then Fonda's opening statement in the same role. But since shortly after he made his comment it broke again for another (second) ad break just gave up.
If any one knoew of a less interrupted version of this on line I would appreciate in seeing it
Thank you.

Anonymous said...

Found a version where they show where breaks were but continue on. Film quality may be lacking but otherwise excellent since it is chopped up by extra intrusive ads.
Funny though I love the Fonda version I found the Cummings version more "realistic" in the sense of it seemed to truer to an "everyman" experience in a jury ( done jury duty for minor stuff)
But with the talents in the Fonda version the reluctance of many seemed to get washed over a bit. Considering the powerful, and talented, actors in the Fonda version that may have been dictated by the abundance of outsized talents.
None of this is meant a a critism but rather sidelights by an untrained "civilian" eye.
ps here is the site of where I found it.

JS said...

Friday Night Lights is such a great show - the Hand-Held cameras is why it made it great. It is a different kind of filming. So many careers came out of that show - Kyle Chandler, Michael B. Jordan, Connie Britton.

Anonymous said...

With the theme of beating a dead horse.
I went and found the Jack Lemmon version of 12 Angry Men on line and watched it as well.
First I was impressed with all the versions and the actors each putting their own stamp on the characters. Staging was interesting as Cumming version played withe the room "reversed' compared to other versions.
First I agree with previous comment about Mykelti Williamson being cast as bigot. It was discordant. Perhaps it would have played better if the defendant had been presented as Gay. Difficult to accept dynamics in play with a Black man playing a conspicious bigot in front of caucasian majority.
I do admit I found that George C Scott did seem a bit over the top espiacially towards the end. But seeing comparison of Lemmons understated acting compared to Scott's rampaging was educational in terms of the craft. Which was more effective?
Olmas was excellent a usual. Cronyn was excellent but I preferred ( taste only not judgement) Sweeny's character. He seemed a bit more in touch with "everyman" as they age the Cronyn who gave the sense of being more of the upper class in large part, I think, of his costume which seemed a bit more elegant then the experiences he was trying to interpet for the others.
Ok I am done

JS said...

My Friday Question - How Long is Too Long? "The Irishman" is 3.5 hours long. I can't sit through that. I have a 2 hour limit How long is too long? My ideal movie - 1.45 minutes or less. If you are going over 2 hours I have to love the actor to sit through it or it has to be "Gone With the Wind" quality and I can watch it on DVD and split it up over 4 nights. There is absolutely no way I can sit in a theatre for 3.5 hours. +4 if you add coming attractions,

Chris Thomson said...

Hi Ken

I think I just figured something out that is probably completely wrong.

Your extremely busy period on a project a while ago was working on the new Frasier?

If I am right don't bother okaying this email, but if you could insert the word potato in a post it would give me a sense of kiwi self satisfaction!


5w30 said...

Think Walter Matthau said that he'd like to have played Felix in some version of "The Odd Couple" ... and yes even though Art Carney was a gifted actor I'd keep seeing "The Honeymooners" Ed Norton on stage, shooting the cuffs and all, playing Felix.