I was also shocked this morning to read that one of my fave comic actors (a real looner!) and one of Mel Brooks' closest friends, fellow "Sid Caesar's Your Show of Shows" writer/comedians, Howard Morris, died late last month. (Carl Reiner, Neil Simon and Woody Allen, among others we know, were also in their gang on that show.) Howie was best known for his "Ernest T. Bass" in the old Andy Griffin Show, but he also played, among numerous other roles, Dr. Lilloman ("Dr. Little-old-man") in my favorite Mel Brooks film, "High Anxiety."
Omigawd, I sure hope someone is there for Mel, in a big way. He and Annie were *justlikethis*. A crazy, crazy-in-love couple. When he didn't think he could do something (such as remake the old Jack Benny/Carole Lombard classic, "To Be or Not To Be,") she made him do it!!! And, contrary to what the critics said and the boxoffice results, I still think it's one of his best!
Mel and Anne were one of the two showbiz couples that really appealed to me ... and that I related to in a personal way ... the other couple being Jerry Stiller and Anne Meara. Catholic girl marries Jewish comic, and the union lasts forever. Heh ... Just one of those tiny dreams that tickled inside my heart, brought a tear of longing to my eye, and made me realize just how unworthy I've always been ... of the type of man I was really attracted to but never had the courage to approach.
p.s. Anne was always a little disappointed that she was best remembered for being the loser Mrs. Robinson rather than her astounding Annie Sullivan in the Patty Duke version of The Miracle Worker!