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  1. #1
    Atomic Punk Viking's Avatar
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    Default Mike Douglas Dies (Not Kirks son!)

    Mike Douglas Dies

    How many of you watched the "Mike Douglas Show"? I used to watch this show all of the time when I got home from school. He was a very classy guy.

    RIP Mike.


    WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. - Mike Douglas, whose affable personality and singing talent earned him 21 years as a television talk show host, died Friday on his 81st birthday.
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    He died at 5:30 a.m. in a Palm Beach Gardens hospital, said his wife, Genevieve Douglas. She wasn't sure of the cause, but said he had been admitted Thursday.

    Douglas became dehydrated on the golf course a few weeks ago and had been treated on and off since. "He was coming along fine, we thought. It was really a shock," she said. "We never anticipated this to happen."

    Douglas' afternoon show aired from 1961 to 1982. It featured his ballad and big-band singing style, other musicians, comedians, sports figures and political personalities, including seven former, sitting or future presidents.

    "People still believe 'The Mike Douglas Show' was a talk show, and I never correct them, but I don't think so," Douglas said in his 1999 memoir, "I'll Be Right Back: Memories of TV's Greatest Talk Show."

    "It was really a music show, with a whole lot of talk and laughter in between numbers."

    Douglas did about 6,000 shows, most 90 minutes long, and estimated that at its peak the syndicated show was seen in about 230 cities.

    Tom Kelly, who co-authored Douglas' memoir, said he had about 30,000 guests appear on his show over the years.

    "One big key to his great success was he had his ego in check," Kelly said. "He always let the guest have the limelight. He was a fine performer. He could sing, he could do comedy, he did it all, but he always gave the guest the spotlight."

    Douglas was among the "early settlers" in daytime talk shows, said Robert Thompson, a professor and director of the Center for the Study of Popular Television at Syracuse University's S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications.

    "Mike Douglas was an old-fashioned traditionalist, holding down the fort while the culture was changing," Thompson said. "He was always the very friendly talk show host, nice to everybody. He would lean toward his guest as if he really cared. He owned that territory."

    Hosts Phil Donahue, Dinah Shore and
    Merv Griffin also found success about the same time. Douglas said in his book that people often confused him with Griffin, another singer of Irish heritage.

    Tim Brooks, television historian and executive vice president of research for Lifetime Television Network, said Douglas was "an outgrowth on the 1950s mentality of politeness."

    "Even when America was getting kind of angry in the 1960s and 1970s, his show was sort of an oasis of politeness," Brooks said. "It got you away from some of the turmoil in life."

    In his memoir, Douglas fondly recalled when Tiger Woods, who as a preschooler was already drawing attention, appeared on the same 1978 show as Bob Hope, an avid golfer. "I don't know what kind of drugs they've got this kid on," Hope quipped, "but I want some."

    Douglas was genial most of the time, but confided in his memoir that his composure was sorely tested one week in 1972 when former Beatle John Lennon and wife,
    Yoko Ono, were his unlikely guest hosts. One of the guest celebrities they selected was well-known anti-war activist Jerry Rubin.

    "He just got on my nerves. It sounded like this guy hated the president, the Congress, everyone in business, the military, all police and just about everything America stands for," Douglas said.

    He recalled becoming confrontational with Rubin. But Lennon "picked up the mantle of Kind and Gentle Host, and he did it quite well, reinterpreting Jerry's comments to take some of the sting out and adding a little humor to keep things cool," Douglas said.

    Born Michael Delaney Dowd in Chicago on Aug. 11, 1925, Douglas began his career as a teenage singer and entertainer for supper clubs and radio programs.

    He was the staff singer at radio station WKY in Oklahoma City before joining the Navy during World War II and serving on a munitions ship.

    Returning home, he became a featured performer on the radio and eventual television program, "Kay Kyser's Kollege of Musical Knowledge." Kyser gave him his stage name.

    Douglas had some hits with Kyser in the 1940s, including "Old Lamplighter" and "Ole Buttermilk Sky." He made the pop charts one more time in 1966 with the sentimental "The Men in My Little Girl's Life."

    As the rock 'n' roll era began to emerge in the late 1950s, his style became less marketable, so he started looking for a way to energize his career.

    He briefly hosted "Hi, Ladies!", a daytime television program on WGN in Chicago. In 1961, Woody Fraser, a Westinghouse Group W program director who had known Douglas in Chicago, recruited him to a Group W station in Cleveland (then KYW) to host a talk and entertainment program.

    The show syndicated starting in 1963 but had a limited budget, and Cleveland was not a frequent destination for well-known potential guests. The show moved to Philadelphia in 1965 and to Los Angeles in 1978.

    Three years later, Group W replaced Douglas with a younger singer,
    John Davidson. "The Mike Douglas Show" continued in syndication under Douglas' control until he retired in 1982 to North Palm Beach, Fla. Douglas appeared as a guest on several talk shows but spent much of his leisure time on the golf course.

    He was diagnosed with prostate cancer on 1990, but surgery was successful.
    "Viking - last to sleep, first to rise, last to leave, that's how the Nords of old rocked the house." ~ timmac in the 'Texas Linkers' thread talking about yours truly. :-)

  2. #2
    Atomic Punk smithjc's Avatar
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    Hey how come you gotta post it? I was trying to but I couldn't get it to stay in the post. Every time I previewed there was nothin there.

    Anyways, thanks for posting this. I'm sure us oldies are probably the only ones around here who've even heard of him and know that he's not Catherine Zeta-Jones' hubby.

    I grew up watching his show every afternoon, that's when I knew it was getting close to dinner time. Very sad.

    RIP.
    RIP - Classic Van Halen

    "A lot of people take Van Halen more seriously than we do." The Diamond One



  3. #3
    PM Goo with your concerns OLO's Avatar
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    Thats a bummer!! I like you Vike would watch his show after school.
    ((Just My Two Cents))
    And thats about what its worth.

  4. #4
    Atomic Punk chefcraig's Avatar
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    Possibly one of the weirdest things I witnessed (and in my house growing up there indeed was some weird shit) was Ian Anderson of Jethro Tull co-hosting "The Mike Douglas Show" for a week.

    Douglas simply liked the guy upon meeting the band as they appeared on the show, and invited him back for a week or so.

    After growing up with shit like this, is there any wonder why I turned to drug use?
    "The reasonable man adapts himself to the world; the unreasonable one persists in trying to adapt the world to himself. Therefore, all progress depends on the unreasonable man."
    George Bernard Shaw

  5. #5
    Niners Fan! SactoFan's Avatar
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    I do remember his guests...That was a pretty eclectic show and Douglas did always seem nice...
    Can't stop...addicted to the shindig...

  6. #6
    Johnson Rod Pabs's Avatar
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    He did a radio interview in Chicago about 2 weeks ago, so this is very surprising. He sounded great and very healthy.
    CHICAGO WHITE SOX - 2005 WORLD CHAMPIONS

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    The Pilgrims/Americans/Somersets whatever you want to call them, have NEVER displayed "SOX" anywhere on their caps, jerseys, or merchandise, therefore they shouldn't be referred to as such. However, the White Sox have used "SOX" since 1912.

    The SOX are in Chicago...we just allow the Pilgrims/Americans/Somersets to use the name.

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  7. #7
    Atomic Punk Viking's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pabs
    He did a radio interview in Chicago about 2 weeks ago, so this is very surprising. He sounded great and very healthy.
    I hadn't heard anything about him in years, so I didn't even know that he was still alive.

    His guests always seemed to have a blast on his show and he seemed to be a genuinely nice guy.
    Last edited by Viking; 08.12.06 at 02:52 PM.
    "Viking - last to sleep, first to rise, last to leave, that's how the Nords of old rocked the house." ~ timmac in the 'Texas Linkers' thread talking about yours truly. :-)

  8. #8
    Sinner's Swing! twonabomber's Avatar
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    i remember watching the show, but i didn't know he started in Cleveland until much later.
    "is this a good show tonight, or fuckin' what?" - DLR, Montreal, 11/10/07

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  9. #9
    Sinner's Swing! vh_chick's Avatar
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    I definitely watched this show as a kid. Mom always had it tuned in.

    Shari
    "Hey, thanks for the bracelet! Was that one for me?" - Michael Anthony to me in the Golden Ring in Grand Rapids, MI July 9, 2004
    July 9, 2004 - Mike pressed a guitar pick into my hand!
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  10. #10
    Baluchitherium steve mcqueen's Avatar
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    Rest in Peace Mike......I, like some of the other "older" guys here, watched almost every afternoon......my mom was from Cleveland and was a big fan.....you didn't hear from him much after his show ended......seems like TV history had sort of forgottem him......too bad, he was a true pro and did not get enough credit for his contributions to the medium.

  11. #11
    Atomic Punk
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    Quote Originally Posted by smithjc
    I grew up watching his show every afternoon, that's when I knew it was getting close to dinner time. Very sad. RIP.
    It's sad to see the TV/Movie personalities that we grew up with dying off...
    "Watch what people are cynical about, and one can often discover what they lack.” -- Gen. George S. Patton

  12. #12
    Atomic Punk
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    Quote Originally Posted by SactoFan
    I do remember his guests...That was a pretty eclectic show and Douglas did always seem nice...
    Mike Douglas and Merv Griffin, the pinnacle of 70's talk-show TV !!
    "Watch what people are cynical about, and one can often discover what they lack.” -- Gen. George S. Patton

  13. #13
    Niners Fan! SactoFan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by voivod
    Mike Douglas and Merv Griffin, the pinnacle of 70's talk-show TV !!
    Donahue was pure wanna-be suck pump compared to the OG M.D....
    Can't stop...addicted to the shindig...

  14. #14
    Atomic Punk smithjc's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by voivod
    It's sad to see the TV/Movie personalities that we grew up with dying off...
    I know. I don't like it either.
    RIP - Classic Van Halen

    "A lot of people take Van Halen more seriously than we do." The Diamond One



 

 

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