Can two divorced men share an apartment without driving each other crazy? That’s a question that audiences — of stage, screen and TV — have been trying to answer for more than 50 years. Back in 1965, playwright Neil Simon introduced the world to mismatched roommates Oscar Madison (sportswriter and an absolute slob) and Felix Unger (as originally conceived a TV news writer, on television a photographer, “portraits a specialty” and fastidious to a fault) on the Broadway stage. Here is how he officially described his creation: “Two men. One divorced and one estranged — and neither quite sure why their marriages fall apart — move in together to cut down on their alimony, and suddenly discover that they’re having the same conflicts and fights that they had in their marriages.”
That concept became The Odd Couple, one of the greatest character comic pairings in history, which may have begun on Broadway, but was quickly adapted into a motion picture and no less than three television series. And of all of those versions, it is the Classic TV take, starring Jack Klugman and Tony Randall as, respectively, Oscar and Felix, and which ran on ABC from 1970-75 (and is currently available on MeTV), that has truly stood the test of time. For that reason, we’re taking a deep dive, having spoken to the people who were there to exclusively present an inside look at the inner workings of the show, revealing some secrets about the beloved series.
So, can two divorced men share an apartment without driving each other crazy? Just scroll down for much more and you be the judge.
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