Rowan & Martin's Laugh-In (often simply referred to as Laugh-In) is an American sketch comedy television program that ran for 140 episodes from January 22, 1968, to March 12, 1973, on the NBC television network. It was hosted by comedians Dan Rowan and Dick Martin. Laugh-In originally aired as a one-time special on September 9, 1967, and was such a success that it was brought back as a series, replacing The Man from U.N.C.L.E. on Mondays at 8 pm (ET).
The title of the show was a play on the "love-ins" or "be-ins" of the 1960s hippie culture, terms that were, in turn, derived from "sit-ins", common in protests associated with civil rights and antiwar demonstrations of the time. In 2002, Rowan & Martin's Laugh-In was ranked number 42 on TV Guide's 50 Greatest TV Shows of All Time.
Laugh-In had its roots in the humor of vaudeville and burlesque, but its most direct influences were Olsen and Johnson's comedy (such as the free-form Broadway revue Hellzapoppin'), the innovative television works of Ernie Kovacs, and the topical satire of That Was The Week That Was. The show was characterized by a rapid-fire series of gags and sketches, many of which conveyed sexual innuendo or were politically charged. The co-hosts continued the exasperated straight man (Rowan) and "dumb" guy (Martin) act, which they had established as nightclub comics.
It featured, at various times, announcer Gary Owens, Goldie Hawn, Arte Johnson, Ruth Buzzi, Judy Carne, Jo Anne Worley, Henry Gibson, Alan Sues, Lily Tomlin, Teresa Graves, Larry Hovis, Chelsea Brown, Sarah Kennedy, Jeremy Lloyd, Dave Madden, Pigmeat Markham, Jud Strunk, Richard Dawson, Moosie Drier, Barbara Sharma, and Johnny Brown.
In 2017, George Schlatter Productions brought Laugh-In back for its 50th anniversary. The original show airs on Decades TV. The entire series has been released in a box set by Time Life.
|Rowan & Martin's Laugh-In|
|Also known as||Laugh-In|
|Theme music composer||Ian Bernard|
|Opening theme||"Inquisitive Tango"|
|Country of origin||United States|
|No. of seasons||6|
|No. of episodes||140 (list of episodes)|
|Running time||45–48 minutes|
|Production company(s)||George Schlatter-Ed Friendly Productions in association with Romart Inc.|
|Original release||January 22, 1968 –|
March 12, 1973
Each episode followed a somewhat similar format, often including recurring sketches. The show started with a short dialogue between Rowan and Martin. Shortly afterward, Rowan would intone: "C'mon Dick, let's go to the party". This live to tape segment comprised all cast members and occasional surprise celebrities dancing before a 1960s "mod" party backdrop, delivering one- and two-line jokes interspersed with a few bars of dance music (later adopted on The Muppet Show, which had a recurring segment that was similar to "The Cocktail Party" with absurd moments from characters). This was similar in format to the "Word Dance" segments of A Thurber Carnival. The show then proceeded through rapid-fire comedy bits, taped segments, and recurring sketches.
At the end of every show, Rowan turned to his co-host and said, "Say good night, Dick", to which Martin replied, "Good night, Dick!". The show then featured cast members' opening panels in a psychedelically painted "joke wall" and telling jokes. As the show drew to a close and the applause died, executive producer George Schlatter's solitary clapping continued even as the screen turned blank and the production logo, network chimes, and NBC logo appeared.
Although most episodes include most of the above segments, the arrangement of the segments was often interchanged. The show often featured guest stars. Sometimes, the guest had a prominent spot in the program, at other times the guest would pop in for short "quickies" (one- or two-line jokes) interspersed throughout the show – as was done most famously by Richard Nixon, when running for president.
Ruth Buzzi, Judy Carne, Henry Gibson, Larry Hovis, Arte Johnson, Barbara Feldon and Jo Anne Worley appeared in the pilot special from 1967. (Goldie Hawn joined for season 1 in 1968). Only the two hosts, announcer Gary Owens, and Buzzi, Carne, Gibson, and Johnson, were in all 14 episodes of season one. Eileen Brennan, Hovis, and Roddy Maude-Roxby left after the first season.
The second season had a handful of new people, including Alan Sues, Dave Madden, and Chelsea Brown. All of the new cast members from season two left at the end of that season except Sues, who stayed on until 1972. At the end of the 1968–69 season, Carne chose not to renew her contract, although she did make appearances during 1969–1970.
The third season had several new people who only stayed on for that season: Teresa Graves, Jeremy Lloyd, Pamela Rodgers, and Byron Gilliam. Lily Tomlin joined in the middle of the season. Jo Anne Worley, Goldie Hawn, and Judy Carne left after the season.
The 1970–71 season brought new additions to the cast include tall, lanky, sad-eyed Dennis Allen, who alternately played quietly zany characters and straight man for anybody's jokes; comic actress Ann Elder, who also contributed to scripts, tap dancer Barbara Sharma, and Johnny Brown.
Arte Johnson, who created many memorable characters, insisted on star billing, apart from the rest of the cast. The producer mollified him, but had announcer Gary Owens read Johnson's credit as a separate sentence: "Starring Dan Rowan and Dick Martin! And Arte Johnson! With Ruth Buzzi ..." This maneuver gave Johnson star billing, but made it sound like he was still part of the ensemble cast. Johnson left the show after the 1970–71 season. Henry Gibson also departed after the 1970–71 season. Johnson and he were replaced by former Hogan's Heroes stars Richard Dawson and Larry Hovis, both of whom had appeared occasionally in the first season. However, the loss of Johnson's many popular characters caused ratings to drop further.
After winning the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress in Cactus Flower, Goldie Hawn made a guest appearance in the third episode of the fourth season. She began the episode as an arrogant snob of an actress; however, a bucket of water thrown at her transformed her back to her giggling dumb blonde persona.
The show celebrated its 100th episode during the 1971–72 season, with Carne, Worley, Johnson, Gibson, Graves, and Tiny Tim all returning for the festivities. John Wayne was on hand for his first cameo appearance since 1968.
For the show's final season (1972–73), Rowan and Martin assumed the executive producer roles from George Schlatter (known on-air as "CFG", which stood for "Crazy Fucking George"), and Ed Friendly. Except for holdovers Dawson, Owens, Buzzi, Dennis Allen, and only occasional appearances from Tomlin, a new cast was brought in. This final season featured comedian Patti Deutsch, folksy singer-comedian Jud Strunk, ventriloquist act Willie Tyler & Lester, and giddy Goldie Hawn lookalike Sarah Kennedy. Former regular Jo Anne Worley returned for two guest appearances, including the final episode. These last shows never aired in the edited half-hour rerun syndicated (through Lorimar Productions) to local stations in 1983 and later on Nick at Nite in 1987, although they were included when the program was rerun on the Decades over-the-air television channel in 2017.
Of over three dozen entertainers to join the cast, only Rowan, Martin, Owens, and Buzzi were there from beginning to end. However, Owens was not in the 1967 pilot and Buzzi missed two first-season episodes.
The writers for Laugh-In were: Digby Wolfe and Paul Keyes, Allan Manings and Hugh Wedlock, Jr., Phil Hahn and Jack Hanrahan, Marc London and David Panich, Chris Bearde (credited as Chris Beard), Coslough Johnson (Arte Johnson's younger brother), Jim Mulligan and Jack Mendelsohn, Dave Cox, Jim Carlson, Lorne Michaels and Hart Pomerantz, John Carsey, Gene Farmer, John Rappaport and Stephen Spears, Jeremy Lloyd, Jack Douglas, Jim Abell and Chet Dowling, Barry Took, E. Jack Kaplan, Larry Siegel and Jack S. Margolis, Don Reo and Allan Katz, Jack Wohl and Richard Goren (also credited as Rowby Greeber and Rowby Goren), Gene Perret and Bill Richmond, and Bob Howard. Script supervisors for Laugh-In included Digby Wolfe (season 1), Phil Hahn and Jack Hanrahan (season 2), Allan Manings (season 3), Marc London and David Panich (seasons 3–6), and Jim Mulligan (season 6).
The musical director for Laugh-In was Ian Bernard. He wrote the opening theme music, "Inquisitive Tango", plus the infamous "What's the news across the nation" number. He wrote all the musical "play-ons" that introduced comedy sketches like Lily Tomlin's character, Edith Ann, the little girl who sat in a giant rocking chair, and Arte Johnson's old man character, Tyrone, who always got hit with a purse. He also appeared in many of the cocktail scenes where he directed the band as they stopped and started between jokes. Composer-lyricist Billy Barnes wrote all of the original musical production numbers in the show, and often appeared on-camera, accompanying Johnson, Buzzi, Worley, or Sues, on a golden grand piano. Barnes was the creator of the famous Billy Barnes Revues of the 1950s and 1960s, and composed such popular hits as "(Have I Stayed) Too Long at the Fair", recorded by Barbra Streisand and the jazz standard "Something Cool" recorded by June Christy.
The show was recorded at NBC's Burbank facility using two-inch quadruplex videotape. Since computer-controlled online editing had not been invented at the time, post-production video editing of the montage was achieved by the error-prone method of visualizing the recorded track with ferrofluid and cutting it with a razor blade or guillotine cutter and splicing with video tape, in a manner similar to film editing. This had the incidental benefit of ensuring that the master tape would be preserved, since a spliced tape could not be recycled for further use. Laugh-In editor Arthur Schneider won an Emmy Award in 1968 for his pioneering use of the "jump cut" – the unique editing style in which a sudden cut from one shot to another was made without a fade-out.
When the series was restored for airing by the Trio Cable Network in 1996, the aforementioned edits became problematic for the editors, as the adhesive used on the source tape had deteriorated during 20+ years of storage, making many of the visual elements at the edit points unusable. This was corrected in digital re-editing by removing the problematic video at the edit point and then slowing down the video image just before the edit point; time-expanding the slowed-down section long enough to allot enough time to seamlessly reinsert the audio portion from the removed portion of video.
Frequently recurring Laugh-In sketches included:
The first season featured some of the first music videos seen on network TV, with cast members appearing in films set to the music of the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band, the Bee Gees, the Temptations, the Strawberry Alarm Clock, and the First Edition.
During the September 16, 1968, episode, Richard Nixon, running for president, appeared for a few seconds with a disbelieving vocal inflection, asking "Sock it to me?" Nixon was not doused or assaulted. An invitation was extended to Nixon's opponent, Vice President Hubert Humphrey, but he declined. According to George Schlatter, the show's creator, "Humphrey later said that not doing it may have cost him the election", and "[Nixon] said the rest of his life that appearing on Laugh-In is what got him elected. And I believe that. And I've had to live with that." In an episode of the ill-fated 1977 revival, a Nixon impersonator says, "I invited the American people to sock-it-to-me.... you can stop now".
On multiple occasions, producer George Schlatter attempted to get William F. Buckley Jr. to appear on the show, only to be refused each time until he suddenly agreed to an appearance. In the episode that aired December 28, 1970, Buckley appeared in an unusual sit-down segment (portions of which were scattered throughout the episode) flanked by Rowan and Martin and fielding questions from the cast (which included Lily Tomlin doing her Fast Talker shtick) and giving humorous answers to each. Near the end, when Rowan asked Buckley why he finally agreed to appear on the show, Buckley explained that Schlatter had written him "an irresistable letter" in which he promised to fly Buckley out to California "in an airplane with two right wings". At the end, Rowan thanked him for appearing, noting that "you can't be that smart without having a sense of humor, and you have a delightful one".
In addition to those already mentioned, the show created numerous catchphrases:
A humor magazine tie-in, Laugh-In Magazine, was published for one year (12 issues: October 1968 through October 1969—no issue was published December 1968), and a syndicated newspaper comic strip was drawn by Roy Doty and eventually collected for a paperback reprint.
The Laugh-In trading cards from Topps had a variety of items, such as a card with a caricature of Jo Anne Worley with a large open mouth. With a die-cut hole, the card became interactive; a finger could be inserted through the hole to simulate Worley's tongue. Little doors opened on Joke Wall cards to display punchlines.
On Letters to Laugh-In, a short-lived spin-off daytime show hosted by Gary Owens, cast members read jokes sent in by viewers, which were scored by applause meter. The eventual winning joke was read by actress Jill St. John: "What do you get when you cross an elephant with a jar of peanut butter? A 500 pound sandwich that sticks to the roof of your mouth!"
A cross-promotional episode of I Dream of Jeannie ("The Biggest Star in Hollywood", February 1969) features Judy Carne, Arte Johnson, Gary Owens, and producer George Schlatter playing themselves in a story about Jeannie being sought after to appear on Laugh-In.
The horror spoof film The Maltese Bippy (1969) starring Dan Rowan and Dick Martin was loosely related to the series. Pamela Rodgers was the only Laugh-In cast member to co-star in the film.
In 1969, Sears, Roebuck and Company produced a 15-minute short, Freeze-In, which starred series regulars Judy Carne and Arte Johnson. Made to capitalize on the popularity of the series, the short was made for Sears salesmen to introduce the new Kenmore freezer campaign. A dancing, bikini-clad Carne provided the opening titles with tattoos on her body.
Between 2003 and 2004, Rhino Entertainment Company (under its Rhino Retrovision classic TV entertainment brand) (under license from SFM Entertainment) released two The Best Of releases of the show, each containing six episodes presented in its original, uncut broadcast version. In 2003, Rhino, through direct-response marketing firm Guthy-Renker, also released a series of DVDs subtitled The Sock-It-To-Me Collection, with each DVD containing two episodes.
On June 19, 2017, Time Life, another direct-response marketer, released Rowan & Martin's Laugh-In: The Complete Series on DVD in Region 1 for the very first time, in a deal with current rightsholder Proven Entertainment. The 38-disc set contains all 140 episodes of the series, complete and uncut, restored and remastered as well as many bonus features and a special 32-page collector's book.
On September 5, 2017, Time Life began releasing individual complete season sets on DVD, beginning with the first season. This was followed by the second season on January 9, 2018, and the third season on March 6, 2018. The fourth season was released on May 8, 2018. Season 5 was released on July 10, 2018. Finally, Season 6 was released on September 4, 2018.
|DVD Name||Ep #||Release Date|
|The Complete First Season||14||September 5, 2017|
|The Complete Second Season||26||January 9, 2018|
|The Complete Third Season||26||March 6, 2018|
|The Complete Fourth Season||26||May 8, 2018|
|The Complete Fifth Season||24||July 10, 2018|
|The Complete Sixth Season||24||September 4, 2018|
|The Complete Series||140||June 19, 2017|
TV season, ranking, average viewers per episode
In 1977, Schlatter and NBC briefly revived the property as a series of specials – titled simply Laugh-In – with a new cast, including former child evangelist Marjoe Gortner. The standout was a then-unknown Robin Williams, whose starring role on ABC's Mork & Mindy one year later prompted NBC to rerun the specials as a summer series in 1979. Also featured were Wayland and Madame, as well as his other puppet, "Jiffy", former Barney Miller actress June Gable, and Good Times actor Ben Powers. Rowan and Martin, who owned part of the Laugh-In franchise, were not involved in this project. They sued Schlatter for using the format without their permission, and won a judgment of $4.6 million in 1980.
Golden Globe Award
1983 saw the first 70 one-hour shows syndicated to broadcast stations (the pilot, first three seasons and the first four episodes of season 4). Alternate recut half-hour shows were syndicated through Lorimar Productions to local stations in 1983 and later on Nick at Nite in 1987 through August 1990.
The cable network Trio started airing the show in its original one-hour form in the early 2000s; the same abbreviated 70 episode package was run.
In September 2016, digital sub-network Decades started airing the show twice a day in its original one-hour format, complete with the NBC Peacock opening and 'snake' closing. The entire 6 season run was supplied by Proven Entertainment.
Joseph Ruud (born November 28, 1981) is an American professional wrestler currently signed to WWE, where he performs on the SmackDown brand under the ring name Rowan (shortened from his previous ring name Erick Rowan).
Ruud previously wrestled in Japan, having trained and performed for Pro Wrestling Noah. He signed a WWE contract in 2011 and was sent to its developmental territory Florida Championship Wrestling (FCW), before debuting in NXT the following year as a founding member of The Wyatt Family. In WWE, he is a one-time NXT Tag Team Champion and a one-time SmackDown Tag Team Champion with Luke Harper.Mr. Bean
Mr. Bean is a British sitcom created by Rowan Atkinson and Richard Curtis, produced by Tiger Aspect Productions and starring Atkinson as the title character. The sitcom consisted of 15 episodes that were co-written by Atkinson alongside Curtis and Robin Driscoll; for the pilot, it was co-written by Ben Elton. The series was originally broadcast on ITV, beginning with the pilot on 1 January 1990 and ending with "The Best Bits of Mr. Bean" on 15 December 1995. The fourteenth episode, "Hair by Mr. Bean of London", was not broadcast on television until 25 August 2006 on Nickelodeon.Based on a character originally developed by Atkinson while he was studying for his master's degree at Oxford University, the series centres on Mr. Bean, described by Atkinson as "a child in a grown man's body", as he solves various problems presented by everyday tasks and often causes disruption in the process. The series has been influenced by physical comedy actors such as Jacques Tati and those from early silent films.During its original five-year run, Mr. Bean met with widespread acclaim and attracted large television audiences. The series was viewed by 18.74 million viewers for the episode "The Trouble with Mr. Bean" and has received a number of international awards, including the Rose d'Or. The series has also been sold in 245 territories worldwide and has inspired an animated spin-off and two theatrical feature-length films along with Atkinson reprising his role as Mr. Bean for a performance at the London 2012 Summer Olympics opening ceremony, television commercials and several sketches for Comic Relief. Besides the acclaim of the show, another reason for the show's appeal in hundreds of territories worldwide is the fact that the show uses very little intelligible dialogue, making it much more accessible to people who know little-to-no English.National Register of Historic Places listings in Rowan County, North Carolina
This list includes properties and districts listed on the National Register of Historic Places in Rowan County, North Carolina. Click the "Map of all coordinates" link to the right to view an online map of all properties and districts with latitude and longitude coordinates in the table below.Rowan
The rowans or mountain-ashes are shrubs or trees in the genus Sorbus of the rose family, Rosaceae. They are native throughout the cool temperate regions of the Northern Hemisphere, with the highest species diversity in the mountains of western China and the Himalaya, where numerous apomictic microspecies occur. The name rowan was originally applied to the species Sorbus aucuparia and is also used for other species in Sorbus subgenus Sorbus.Formerly, when a wider variety of fruits were commonly eaten in Europe and North America, Sorbus was a domestically used fruit throughout these regions. It is still used in some countries, but Sorbus domestica, for example, has largely vanished from Britain, where it was traditionally appreciated. Natural hybrids, often including Sorbus aucuparia and the whitebeam, Sorbus aria, give rise to many endemic variants in the UK.Rowan Atkinson
Rowan Sebastian Atkinson (born 6 January 1955) is an English actor, comedian and screenwriter best known for his work on the sitcoms Blackadder and Mr. Bean. Atkinson first came to prominence in the BBC's sketch comedy show Not the Nine O'Clock News (1979–1982), receiving the 1981 BAFTA for Best Entertainment Performance, and via his participation in The Secret Policeman's Ball from 1979. His other work includes the 1983 James Bond film Never Say Never Again, playing a bumbling vicar in Four Weddings and a Funeral (1994), voicing the red-billed hornbill Zazu in The Lion King (1994), and featuring in the BBC sitcom The Thin Blue Line (1995–1996). His work in theatre includes the 2009 West End revival of the musical Oliver!.
Atkinson was listed in The Observer as one of the 50 funniest actors in British comedy, and among the top 50 comedians ever, in a 2005 poll of fellow comedians. In addition to his 1981 BAFTA, he received an Olivier Award for his 1981 West End theatre performance in Rowan Atkinson in Revue. He has also had cinematic success with his performances in the Mr. Bean movie adaptations Bean and Mr. Bean's Holiday, and also in the Johnny English film series (2003–2018). He also appears as the titular character in Maigret (2016–present).Rowan University
Rowan University is a public research university in Glassboro, New Jersey, United States, with a satellite campus in Camden, New Jersey. The school was founded in 1923 as Glassboro Normal School on a 25-acre (10 ha) site donated by 107 local residents. The school became New Jersey State Teachers College at Glassboro in the 1930s, and Glassboro State College in 1958. Starting in the 1970s, it grew into a multi-purpose institution, adding programs in business and communications.
It was renamed Rowan College of New Jersey in 1992, after industrialist Henry Rowan and his wife, Betty, gave the school $100 million, at the time the largest gift to a public college. The investment set in motion decades of growth including the establishment of the Henry M. Rowan College of Engineering and vast expansion, including a $400 million downtown public-private redevelopment project known as Rowan Boulevard.
Rowan College became Rowan University on March 21, 1997, when it won approval for university status from the New Jersey Commission on Higher Education. In the fall of 2012, Cooper Medical School of Rowan University opened in Camden; it was the first public medical school in New Jersey not associated with the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey. It later acquired the School of Osteopathic Medicine, when UMDNJ was dissolved on July 1, 2013, and became, at the time, just the second university in the United States to offer both an M.D. and a D.O. medical program.
As of 2018, the university includes 12 colleges and schools plus the Division of Global Learning & Partnerships which manages the graduate program, online learning and other creative educational programming. The university has a total enrollment (undergraduate, graduate and professional studies) of roughly 18,560 students. Rowan offers 74 bachelor's, 51 master's degrees, four doctoral degrees, two professional degrees, seven undergraduate certificates, and 38 post-baccalaureate certificates.Rowan Williams
Rowan Douglas Williams, Baron Williams of Oystermouth, (born 14 June 1950) is a Welsh Anglican bishop, theologian and poet. He served as the 104th Archbishop of Canterbury from December 2002 to December 2012. Previously the Bishop of Monmouth and Archbishop of Wales, Williams was the first Archbishop of Canterbury in modern times not to be appointed from within the Church of England.
Williams' primacy was marked by speculation that the Anglican Communion (in which the Archbishop of Canterbury is the leading figure) was on the verge of fragmentation over disagreements on contemporary issues such as homosexuality and the ordination of women. Williams worked to keep all sides talking to one another. Notable events during his time as Archbishop of Canterbury include the rejection by a majority of dioceses of his proposed Anglican Covenant and, in the final General Synod of his tenure, his unsuccessful attempt to secure a sufficient majority for a measure to allow the appointment of women as bishops in the Church of England.
Having spent much of his earlier career as an academic at the universities of Cambridge and Oxford successively, Williams speaks three languages and reads at least nine. After standing down as Archbishop, Williams took up the positions of Master of Magdalene College, Cambridge in 2013, and Chancellor of the University of South Wales in 2014. He also delivered the Gifford Lectures at the University of Edinburgh in 2013.
Justin Welby succeeded Williams as Archbishop of Canterbury on 9 November 2012, being enthroned in March 2013. On 26 December 2012, 10 Downing St announced Williams' elevation to the peerage as a Life Baron, so that he could continue to speak in the Upper House of Parliament. Following the creation of his title on 8 January and its gazetting on 11 January 2013, he was introduced to the temporal benches of the House of Lords as Baron Williams of Oystermouth on 15 January 2013, sitting as a crossbencher.Salisbury, North Carolina
Salisbury ( SAWLZ-bər-ee) is a city in the Piedmont of North Carolina; it is the county seat of Rowan County. Located 44 miles northeast of Charlotte and within its metropolitan area, the town has attracted a growing population. This was 33,663 in the 2010 Census (growing 27.8% from the Census in 2000).
Founded in 1753, Salisbury is noted for its historic preservation, with five Local Historic Districts and ten National Register Historic Districts. Salisbury is the home to North Carolina soft drink, Cheerwine, regional supermarket, Food Lion and Rack Room Shoes. It is one of two cities in North Carolina to have gigabit capacity through its municipally owned broadband system.
In 2015 Salisbury's Fibrant system (later called Hotwire) became capable of 10 gigabit capacity town-wide; it is thought to be the only town-owned system in the world with such capacity.