Bonanza, Lorne Greene, and Me
Lorne Greene played a duo part, his starring role as Ben Cartwright as well as a look-alike Hustler, exact replica of Papa Ben Cartwright. This was to be one of my favorite roles as I played Dixie Wells, a break from the simple pretty girl parts and given a character that I hadn't ever played before. You might say I was a Seductress. I could slip into being a woman who'd been around and when I say "been around" I mean she'd worked in saloons and knew exactly how to entice men and wrap them around her fingers Big Time. Actually, you fellows are no doubt aware of this species of females, AREN'T YOU??? As the character I was familiar with how to "work my feminine charms on my men as you'll surely pick up on & notice her strategies, etc. This was really a very fun part for me to play. And, If I may, the antithesis of who I was in real life. OH BOY!, this was a wonderful part Indeed and one I was excited to play... Going forward, the whole Cartwright family was exceptional, exuding warmth and was special because they represented very good and honest Americans. Each and every one of the actors in the Cartwright Family were Brilliant along with the devoted helper and cook Hop Sing played by Victor Sen Yung. Before closing this fun and interesting segment, I want to mention that I was also chosen to play another part or role on Bonanza that will entice you, my audience, friends and followers. You will see in a totally different Bonanza segment, the lovely and talented Linda Crystal and me together. The title is WARBONNET. Now, let’s get right into it. Lorne Greene was wonderful and in my estimation, he enjoyed every minute of it. He would say to me during breaks, "this is a good switch for me. I can finally be a bad guy and surprise my audience.” I heard him utter some words under his breath, quickly looking at me saying, "you didn't hear that did you?" I said, "what"? he said good, you're not supposed to hear words that aren't meant for your ears. To tell the truth, I did hear it but I just wasn't going to go there...You know what I mean. Mr. Greene loved switching back from the honorable Ben Cartwright, powerful head of one of the biggest family ranch owner in the territory, to a swindling hustler bad guy and may I say he did it with a great deal of finesse. During lunch breaks, he'd go into his trailer but occasionally would come out and talk as he always had something to say but only when he was in the mood. Over all, he couldn't have been nicer and garnered a great deal of respect from all cast members and crew. Oh, I want to add something about a specific scene of so-called passion with Ben Cartwright playing a dual part as the bad guy imposter and me, as the conniving wench hoping to luck out and entice some attractive man with her sensual charms, and make some money to get away from being a simple saloon girl selling those charms. Her character had always dreamed of falling in love with a rich man. Thinking back to one day in particular, our Director, Lewis Allen, had become very interested in one scene he was directing. And since I was in that scene, I vividly recall from my vantage point that I could actually see our director’s reflection in a mirror on the wall that no one else could see, just me. Especially, NOT Even from the cameraman's POV aka "Point of view". So YES, there was a passionate kiss I had with Ben Cartwright as the conniving look alike bad guy. And lest you forget, I was the only human being that could see the director’s reflection in that mirror. Now, to this day, I believe that, for an instant, I saw the director's eyebrows kind of flipping up and down as if He Was not only enjoying but living vicariously through the Ben Cartwright romantic scene. It might have been a nervous tick but I Don't Think So.
The War Between Gidget and Me
I'd like to start by saying that within the first year of my acting career I was in five different television shows and one movie. Each and every one of those acting rolls were very different and I enjoyed them all. Therefore, it's rather interesting to go back and share with all of you an early time in my acting career as well as my personal life. Hope you're with me as I'm Absolutely with You. One of my favorites was a role in a Television series known as "GIDGET" starring a fresh newcomer known as SALLY FIELD. So, my friends, Here We Go !! Today's Podcast Episode is: "The War Between Gidget and Me" May I say, I was so excited actually "over the moon would be more like it" when I learned I'd been chosen by a known and respected Director, E. W. Swackhammer, to play Patty Cromwell; a somewhat snippy-snooty girl who thought she was "top of the line" in school. A girl that would get everything she wanted, and of course thought she was God's gift to any boy or guy. Although, before I continue with Gidget, I'd like to tell a short & kind of silly story, actually, to me, a funny story. I want to talk about what in particular, can happen behind the scenes, on sets, and on television. There are times, once in a while, those unusual things occur and I want to share one of them, especially IF they're unusual or Funny! Working with Directors can be lots of fun, sometimes difficult but always interesting. Why is that? Because there are times when the actor goes off script and is so far into the character that he or she is bringing to life more than the written script conveys. Check "Bewitched Episode #4 Agnes Moorhead vs Director". I recall a specific director/No Name & not Gidget, who was in a good mood and seemed as if he was very relaxed and that, my friends, can be a good thing. Right!! Most directors are spot-on serious, but I want to share something off the charts. There was a time, that one specific director was directing me in a scene and everything seemed to be going just peachy keen and fine. When all of a sudden he began to kind of giggle and then, out of nowhere yelled "CUT" in a firm voice in the middle of my scene which made Me nervous that I had done something wrong. Basically, I was so unsure as to Why he stopped everything. The director kept "Eyeing ME" which of course made Me feel as if I'd made a mistake. Or if someone else had done something because IT most assuredly was NOT I. You may not believe that I soon found out that someone, whom I didn't know, possibly a crew member, had Passed Wind and obviously had a gas problem that this director heard. Now, as I mentioned earlier, I had not heard anything, although our director HAD heard something and was very upset. To add insult to injury, he firmly said "whoever did it ... LEAVE NOW". Not a single sole walked out or confessed which irritated him even more and like a dog sniffing for a bone, he got up and looked around although not one person owned up to it. Not one person even Looked Guilty and why for what... I surely didn't know. I thought to myself it must be an inside joke. I mean I didn't know what to do or say and others were also shrugging their shoulders as if to say "I didn't do it" WHATEVER "It" was. Please recognize that unexpectedly and to my knowledge, there wasn't anyone confessing... what the heck are they or anyone supposed to be confessing?? Anyhow finally a person next to me whispered "Somebody farted ... I missed that, somebody what? Sorry, I just didn't hear you, what's happening? I couldn't hear you. I truly couldn't and On top of that, I knew that many were doing their best to hold back laughter and at this point, including me. the whole thing was redick. And another thing, Why was everyone looking around at everyone else??
Green Hornet, Bruce Lee, and Me
How are you today and did you enjoy my episode #5 BATMAN, Riddler, and Moth? I'm always excited to learn about your thoughts, reactions and opinions. Just as you like to learn about what happens on the shows I've done as well as my life stories that you enjoy. I think you know today will be about the GREEN HORNET. The first day I recall going to the studio was Exciting and Truthfully, I Just didn't know what to expect although looking forward without question or any doubts. The Director was Darrell Hollenbeck, a man who definitely knew his business. Shortly after I met the handsome Van Williams playing dual parts transforming from businessman into the Green Hornet who fought for justice along with Kato. Also there was the very pretty Wendy Wagner as his assistant. My character was Vama from outerspace and I was the very first female to ever ZAP DOWN and KNOCK-OUT Bruce Lee. This action became History !! I met Bruce at the studio for the first time and believe it or not, there was an immediate friendship. I'll explain .... For sure It seemed that right off the bat he and I clicked and Bruce began sharing many things in his life. The Green Hornet was his first acting role in America and as you know Bruce was a good looking guy and had been, of course a star talent in martial Arts Kung Fu in Hong Kong films. I believe that was the chief reason he was chosen as Kato to be the Kung Fu Protector of the GREEN HORNET !!! Although Bruce never talked about his wife Linda that, coincidentally was My Name and well it could have been because my name was the same as his wife's that he may have felt an unexpected comfort level. All be it, during "takes & filming", a special and trusting friendship began between us. Yes, he was "Kato" the Green Hornet's Protector but much more than that, the Legendary Kung Fu Master "Bruce Lee" who was destined to become an American Icon. THEE LEGENDARY KUNG FU MASTER .... BRUCE LEE ... By the way, July 9th 1967 Bruce wrote in his diary that he named his marshal arts style, "Jeet Kune Do". My very first day of shooting was the day I met Bruce as he approached me almost immediately and began talking about his career. Well, what would YOU do if you were me? Listen of course, right!! And LISTEN is exactly what I did. He kept looking directly at me all the while chatting on and on wanting advice about his life. I never had anyone do that before. There were times he would stare into my eyes but then quickly look away all the while continuously talking; Sometimes he'd step back and look down immediately as if he was unsure of himself. Since I hadn't known him for any length of time I would always listen, and also because We had an immediate friendship. This would happen every day that I was on or off set, he'd find me no matter where I was, whether or not I was in costume or waiting to change into being the golden VAMA. During breaks was his favorite time to come over and begin talking. His main focus was always on his career which encompassed something that saddened me. From his voice I could feel his pain from something deep inside that he wasn't fully accepted being Chinese in the Hollywood film community as he was desperately striving to become an accepted and known star. Being overly sensitive myself, I could recognize and feel his sensitivity regarding those who did not appear to fully accept him. Those who at times might whisper or even sometimes halt their conversations when they saw us talking together. He was gentle and treated me with great respect as he asked my opinions about almost everything in his life. He would say many times I respect your opinion, and you're smart and very educated, a special and beautiful lady.
Batman, Riddler, & Moth
HI to my Friends, Fans and Followers. I'm thinking about all of you with lots of Excitement, Humor, Drama, and how we will soon be traveling across the globe to foreign lands.. I'll be sharing my real life adventures that will surprise and possibly frighten some of you, as it did me, but know this ... I Am, without question, Very Much Alive! No doubt you definitely will get to know me in many ways during my life adventures that I haven't disclosed to anyone other than very close family members due to the dangerous encounters that came my way because of my naivety and lack of experience. So stay with me on Linda's Bumpy Ride. Although before we go there, let's dip into some wildly crazy and fun experiences while visiting one of yours and my favorite shows "BATMAN" ... !!! I know so, so many of us recall the excitement we felt in looking forward to the amazing BATMAN TV Series bi-weekly in 1966. Therefore Riddler & Moth will be featured in this week's 5th Episode "Ring of Wax" Part 1 and Give Em The Axe" Part 2 ... Whoa, Here We Go !!! Closing my eyes, I have vivid memories of being introduced to many on the set of BATMAN and how thrilled I was to be cast in that show. After all, it was one of the highest rated and most watched shows on television. I'll begin by saying the Director, James Clark, was wonderful and extremely respected by everyone. On the first day I was introduced to Adam West, aka BATMAN who was filled with warm smiles and glittering eyes as if he'd known me for ages. He was also helpful as he would ask if I had any questions and if there was anything in particular that I needed. Although it was only my first time on Batman, I remember that he seemed to go out of his way to want to accommodate and help me and thinking to myself what a delightful experience it was indeed.... Hummmm !!! I want to say that many years later I would jog all around Santa Monica, up and down San Vicente and see fellow joggers there like Arnold Schwarzenegger and Maria Shriver (one of the Kennedy family) and also, surprisingly Adam West who had become Honorary Mayor of Pacific Palisades. Those who jogged in that area knew the stairs 180 and then after exercise, many of us would go to Patricks cafe in the canyon but right on PCH Pacific Coast Hwy and have coffee, breakfast or lunch, etc. , Just an amazing time! Next, Burt Ward as the smiley faced Robin could not have been nicer and loved to joke with everyone. A genuinely fun and good guy. A little while later I met Frank Gorshin who seemed as if he'd already slipped into and become his extraordinary character. So, let me start by saying the Riddler was without doubt an amazing and exciting trip for me and I want to say a wildly and different experience for sure. Please keep in mind that although young, I was quite at home with my fellow actors and soon felt the unusual MOTH character taking over and somehow discarding the Linda I normally knew in day to day life. Sounds weird I know but when you're an actor unusual moods come about and BOOM, you're transformed into the character you've been hired to play and to be. Let me give you an example of what I mean; Toward the end of Part II, did I "accidentally" Fall into the coffin OR did I fall in "ON PURPOSE"? So my friends, Ponder that question. Frank Gorshin was a very different person, far different than anyone I had ever met in my life. During the time we spent working together, he was fully and completely in character, meaning "HE WAS THE RIDDLER"! Frankly & kind of Sadly, I, myself, Never REALLY Knew or was able to meet the Real Frank Gorshin although after seeing him as a guest on late night TV shows. I actually did see a part of Frank Gorshin that would briefly reveal itself, I mean the real deep down Frank Gorshin who was wonderful would almost immediately Snap into being Jerry Lewis, or begin to talk and sing like Frank Sinatra.
I am Bewitched!
A Bewitching Experience Hi Everyone, my friends, fans, and followers. I'm so happy to be here once again to share the many stories I have, to let you in on, and to reveal what's been happening in my life. To start, I've been traveling and missed you all more than you know. February was filled with going here and there and hope you all had a great Valentine's Day. Very Romantic!!! Ummmm!!! By the way, in my 3rd Episode, I deliberately spoke of many intimate, personal feelings, situations and hope it wasn't too much for some of you. After all, the reason for my PC Episodes is to let you in on my life so you really get to know me. But hang on, because this Bumpy Ride becomes a far greater Bumpier ROAD than any of you can imagine. In my 3rd Episode, I shared many intimacies that almost never are shared but I briefly mention a different or other Michael about whom you will learn in this 4th Episode. I've had so many requests to share my fabulous "Three Wishes" Episode of Bewitched and I'm over the top with excitement to do so. As many of you already know I was "Buffy", the blond ninny that could barely see anything without her glasses. Going back, I remember how everyone laughed on the set as I portrayed my character. And please keep in mind they, of course, would not dare laugh until "After a Take" as our Director William "Bill" Asher was known to be Moody, quick-tempered, and as a matter of fact, he would often yell at many of the actors in a way that was demeaning such as the beautiful and lovely Samantha played by Elizabeth Montgomery. In my heart, I felt sad for her because, at that time, she was married to Bill Asher. I have many memories of Bewitched even though I did only one show. A wonderful gentleman was Darin (Dick York) who could be very funny and had a way of making everyone laugh, including me. He was a treasure-trove of wild and crazy stories that he'd begin talking about as everyone, except our Director, would break up and laugh about which of course definitely eased any tension on the set. There was a scene in that show when I was in bed and had to answer the phone. It was perfectly innocent but when I answered the phone I accidentally sneezed and at that moment Bill Asher Screamed "CUT" and "I was mortified and immediately said "I'm sorry. He waited for everyone to be quiet and said "Take 2" a-n-d "Action"! At that very moment, the lunch wagon outside tooted the horn and everything went to hell in a handbasket. Yes, it was lunchtime but on our soundstage, we were thinking about getting the shot done, and well, this was one of those things that happen rarely but that noise distracted Bill Asher beyond his limit. First my sneeze and then.....the beep-beep horn for lunch. Not Good but worse for the actors and crew because our Director was furious about the interruption. Another thing that shouldn't have happened was ... when the soundstage is shooting, it's a foregone conclusion that the red light outside the soundstage goes on. I can only assume that either the lunch truck didn't see it or the red light didn't work. Either way, Bill Asher had every right to be angry and hopefully went to his trailer and possibly took a swig of something.