Everyone talks about Paul Lynde but no one mentions Charles Nelson Riley. He was funny.
Charles Nelson Riley
|by Anonymous||reply 103||Last Wednesday at 4:05 AM|
I use to love him on Johnny Carson
What a storyteller
|by Anonymous||reply 1||07/24/2020|
His biopic will be released next year. Stars Matthew Perry.
|by Anonymous||reply 2||07/24/2020|
I think some people still talk about Charles Nelson *Reilly*
|by Anonymous||reply 3||07/24/2020|
Funny weird more than funny ha-ha.
|by Anonymous||reply 4||07/24/2020|
Matthew Perry's fat enough to play the entire Match Game panel but nowhere near as funny as any of them.
|by Anonymous||reply 5||07/24/2020|
He won a Tony Award for Best Supporting Actor in "How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying" and co-starred with Carol Channing in the original "Hello, Dolly!" on Broadway. Besides his long stint on "Match Game", he was on "The Ghost and Mrs. Muir" tv show, plus he taught at HB Studio in NY and was a noted director, who directed Julie Harris and Uta Hagen! He was an opera lover too -- one of the ushers at the Met once pointed him out to me after Reilly had entered a bit tipsily but being very friendly -- "Oh, there's Charles!" Unlike Paul Lynde, who apparently was banned from Northwestern for being an honoree based on past unpleasantness, Charles Nelson Reilly was fun and happy when he indulged in some cocktails.
|by Anonymous||reply 6||07/24/2020|
Got to go backstage to meet him after a performance of Life of Reilly. Very kind man. Penny Singleton was in his dressing room that night too.
|by Anonymous||reply 7||07/24/2020|
R6 All that, but you leave off the Sid and Marty Croft years?
|by Anonymous||reply 8||07/24/2020|
Not to mention this?
|by Anonymous||reply 9||07/24/2020|
R8 Sorry, I was more into Witchiepoo and Jack WIld and that flute everyone was after.
|by Anonymous||reply 10||07/24/2020|
Go watch the "I've Got A Secret" (1972) episode with Charles Nelson Reilly, where Gene Rayburn and Richard Dawson and Nanette Fabray try to guess his secret.
|by Anonymous||reply 11||07/24/2020|
I tried to watch his One man Show, and it was endless, and shouty and made me sad.
|by Anonymous||reply 12||07/24/2020|
He and Billie Hayes should have done a lavender marriage.
|by Anonymous||reply 13||07/24/2020|
Riley, r3? You RILEY had to go there??
|by Anonymous||reply 14||07/25/2020|
r13 I thought he WAS married to Brett Somers.
|by Anonymous||reply 15||07/25/2020|
How comes he never did a Halloween special like homosexual leaning Paul Lynde and Vincent Price?
|by Anonymous||reply 16||07/25/2020|
I loved Charles Nelson Riley and Brett Somers on Match Game!
|by Anonymous||reply 17||07/25/2020|
He and Burt Reynolds were besties
|by Anonymous||reply 18||07/25/2020|
r16 Homosexual leaning Paul Lynde and Vincent Price? What the hell does that mean?
|by Anonymous||reply 19||07/25/2020|
R19 Well Scotty Bowers said he had him and his daughter called him bisexual.
|by Anonymous||reply 20||07/25/2020|
As a child, Reilly was present at the great circus fire of 1944. 167 people died because appropriate fireproofing materials had been diverted to the war effort so the Ringling Bros. bigtop tent had been weatherproofed with a mixture of wax and gasoline when it went up in flames.
He said once that loud applause and cheering always bothered him because the sounds brought back that day.
|by Anonymous||reply 21||07/25/2020|
He was in my favorite X-Files episode "Jose Chung's From Outer Space". and I've heard good things about the film of his one man show "The Life of Reilly".
|by Anonymous||reply 22||07/25/2020|
That laugh of his was cringe worthy
|by Anonymous||reply 23||07/25/2020|
R22 They lied.
|by Anonymous||reply 24||07/25/2020|
He was a very funny guy and reportedly a nice one too. He doesn't get talked about as much as Paul Lynde because Paul Lynde had that high profile job on Hollywood Squares and was said to be quite a son of a bitch.
|by Anonymous||reply 25||07/25/2020|
I want a Victor Buono biopic. I think he died the same week/year as Paul Lynde.
|by Anonymous||reply 26||07/25/2020|
CHARLES NELSON REILLY!!!!!!..........CHARLES NELSON REILLY!!!!!!.......crickets....
|by Anonymous||reply 27||07/25/2020|
He and Brennan got cast in Dolly because Champion was looking for some off kilter juvenile leads to give some kind edginess to the show.
|by Anonymous||reply 28||07/25/2020|
Know people who were friendly with him. A true comedic talent and good person - but apparently a hardcore alcoholic who could get nasty after a binge. Everyone who knew him has good stories and seemed to admire him despite having horror stories of alcoholic rages.
|by Anonymous||reply 29||07/25/2020|
Serrated Blade is about him:
|by Anonymous||reply 30||07/25/2020|
In my waiter days i would semi regularly wait on him. He was nice , often chatty.. i have nothing else.
|by Anonymous||reply 31||07/25/2020|
Back in the 1970s when I had first moved to New York and was living in the Village, some friends took me to a very popular vanilla gay bar in Murray Hill. It was all very loud and convivial until two guys entered and sat at the bar ordering drinks and talking together.
Suddenly the noise went to a hush. I asked my friends what was going on. They told me that the two guys were Arthur Laurents and Charles Nelson Reilly. Two A List homosexuals had come into this local neighborhood bar! Of course, neither were out at the time.
I still don't whether the hush that ensued was some kind reverence for a distinguished A List pair of gays or whether everyone was just trying to eavesdrop on their conservation.
Whichever, that's all I've got.
|by Anonymous||reply 32||07/26/2020|
^ conversation, not conservation. Whichever.
|by Anonymous||reply 33||07/26/2020|
They talk about both of those two old bitches too much, if you ask me.
|by Anonymous||reply 34||07/26/2020|
Chuck was A List?
|by Anonymous||reply 35||07/26/2020|
Well it was just a local neighborhood gay bar yet everyone knew who he was. A List enough for that time and place I guess.
|by Anonymous||reply 36||07/26/2020|
if he was with the author of Gypsy and West Side Story he was certainly A List adjacent that night.
|by Anonymous||reply 37||07/26/2020|
R22 That is one of the greatest episodes of television ever!
|by Anonymous||reply 38||07/26/2020|
Reilly was a nationally known gay man with a Tony. Definitely A list in a local bar.
|by Anonymous||reply 39||07/26/2020|
He might have been a nice guy or drunk as some have described him, but I am sorry, not funny or particularly talented. Visually repugnant and mildly flamboyant, he was really the gay version of an Uncle Tom that Hollywood would allow to receive a bottom tier award.
|by Anonymous||reply 40||07/26/2020|
Knew someone who met him once casually. Reported he was very nice. Don't know about the drunk part but his niceness seems to be regularly reported on.
|by Anonymous||reply 41||07/26/2020|
You don't know what an Uncle Tom is, R40, if you think Reilly was one.
|by Anonymous||reply 42||07/26/2020|
And the Tony is the last thing from a bottom tier award.
|by Anonymous||reply 43||07/26/2020|
[quote]Reilly was a nationally known gay man with a Tony. Definitely A list in a local bar.
One single award for being a stage queen does not make you "A" list. You have low standards if you think it dose. Hot guys were not flocking over to hang with Charles Nelson Rieley when he walked into a gay bar even back then.
|by Anonymous||reply 44||07/26/2020|
So having hot guys flock over you is what makes you A list?
|by Anonymous||reply 45||07/26/2020|
I used to watch reruns of the Ghost & Mrs.muir when i was a little kid in the 70s. CNR was the best part of the show. On The Match Game he was a delight. Always liked him more than cranky sniveling Paul Lynde.
|by Anonymous||reply 46||07/26/2020|
A list is a superficial concept R45 so yes, if hot guys are not flocking over to see you chances are you are D list. There is no actual list like that in Hollywood that officially ranks people. It's purely opinion by star fuckers.
I didn't the the A list thing. But if you are going to bring it up and state how important he was, then I am going to shoot it down and show how ridiculous it is to even rank him as such.
|by Anonymous||reply 47||07/26/2020|
I never said he was important. I said things went quiet in a local neighborhood gay bar when he came in with Arthur Laurents. I also said I thought maybe people just wanted to listen in their conversation, which I think likely.
But yes, he actually was a big deal in the NYC gay community in the 1970s. Successful closeted gay, nationally known from TV and with the stamp of Tony approval. I don't care if you like him, I didn't all that much myself, but he was a big deal whether you realize it or not. You weren't there.
|by Anonymous||reply 48||07/26/2020|
Ignore the troll, r48. He’s one of those miserable people who comes here to upset people and shit all over threads that others are enjoying.
|by Anonymous||reply 49||07/26/2020|
|by Anonymous||reply 50||07/26/2020|
I groped the clothed hard-on of CNR's partner Pat Hughes' former partner.
That's all I've got.
|by Anonymous||reply 51||07/26/2020|
How pathetic if that was gay life in NYC back then. Sounds as dreary and self loathing as Boys in the Band. Why are old gays so nostalgic about NYC during the 70's? It doesn't sound like it was all that they make it out to be.
|by Anonymous||reply 52||07/26/2020|
It must have been horrible for young CNR to have experienced that circus tent fire; he was obviously scared to some extent for life.
It really amazes me sometimes how stupid people were back then; but 1940's also was a time when housewives and others were using gasoline to "dry clean" at home so that tells you something.
|by Anonymous||reply 53||07/26/2020|
Girls, girls, you’re both D-listers, now move on!
|by Anonymous||reply 54||07/26/2020|
He was no Witchiepoo.
|by Anonymous||reply 55||07/26/2020|
But I came to appreciate Merlo the Magician after he teamed up with Witchiepoo.
|by Anonymous||reply 56||07/26/2020|
Not to wander off topic, but only now can I appreciate how utterly insane and hallucinatory that show was.
|by Anonymous||reply 57||07/26/2020|
Upon further research it must have been ghastly for CNR, and like many survivors of disasters he never forgot what details of that tragic event.
"The Hartford Circus Fire ended up killing over 160 people and injuring hundreds more, most of them women and children. Reilly and his friend were able to leap off the bleachers and escape without harm, but later in life, while filming a one-man autobiographical play, Reilly described in detail the horror of seeing children wandering the scene with burned, mutilated faces. The incident so traumatized Reilly that in spite of his lifelong love of acting and the theater, he himself never sat in an audience again, claiming that being part of a large crowd reminded him of that terrible day in 1944. An actor famous for making people smile, secretly haunted by a childhood tragedy in Hartford, remembered on this day in Connecticut history."
|by Anonymous||reply 58||07/26/2020|
I would like to see Ryan Murphy tackle the Hartford Circus Fire in a limited run series.
|by Anonymous||reply 59||07/26/2020|
OT slightly but I've known the Reilly circus fire story for many years and it always reminded me of a Titanic survivor who ended up in Chicago near Wrigley Field. Eventually she had to move because the screaming and yelling from the ball field after a successful play or home run would make her think of the screaming and yelling from the water for nearly an hour after the ship sank and she finally could no longer take it.
|by Anonymous||reply 60||07/26/2020|
[quote] Arthur Laurents and Charles Nelson Reilly. Two A List homosexuals had come into this local neighborhood bar! Of course, neither were out at the time.
CNR was never “in.”
And he wasn’t closeted, either. Things like that weren’t discussed then, but like Paul Lynde, everyone knew.
|by Anonymous||reply 61||07/26/2020|
R45, you’re arguing with an idiot who insists the proper spelling of does is “dose.”
|by Anonymous||reply 62||07/26/2020|
Paul Lynde had a team of writers for all of his jokes on Hollywood Squares, Charles totally ad libbed all those years on Match Game
|by Anonymous||reply 63||07/26/2020|
Not funny at all. Probably tortured inside.
|by Anonymous||reply 64||07/26/2020|
He needed balance with the off-kilter leading lady, r28, not for edge.
|by Anonymous||reply 65||07/26/2020|
[quote]I thought he WAS married to Brett Somers.
R15 Brett was hilarious. She was married to Jack Klugman.
|by Anonymous||reply 66||07/26/2020|
CNR was one of those gays who didn't need to make a formal announcement; everyone knew.....
Was same with the bitter and twisted Paul Lynde, but CNR was much nicer IMHO, at least he didn't go around throwing his dates off balconies.
|by Anonymous||reply 67||07/26/2020|
Several people upthread mentioned CNR's appearance on the X-Files in Jose Chung's From Outer Space. That episode included a rare acting appearance by Alex Trebek as Man in Black #2. Jesse Ventura was Man in Black #1. It was a great episode and CNR was excellent.
|by Anonymous||reply 68||07/26/2020|
Alec Baldwin did a hilarious impression of him on SNL.
|by Anonymous||reply 69||07/26/2020|
He might have been nicer than Paul but probably the most boring guy at the party.
|by Anonymous||reply 70||07/26/2020|
I'd take nice over bitchy queen any day of the week.
Sadly have endured the company on more than a few occasions in life of bitchy drunk nasty queen. At some point if you cannot make your excuses and leave you want to either punch their teeth out, or wrap your hands around throat and keep squeezing until they die......
Friends of Paul Lynde do say if kept away from the sauce he was very nice and more pleasant to be around. From what one has read and is given to understand however PL got more bitter and disillusioned with his life, career, Hollywood, etc.. as he got older, hence more drinking.
|by Anonymous||reply 71||07/26/2020|
Both PL and CNR suffered same issues with their careers and television and films; the suits would only consider them for certain roles because everyone knew they were gay. According to his good friend Kaye Ballard this really bothered Paul Lynde as he wanted to do other things besides what he was offered. His few film roles like "The Rabbit Test" were pretty much same ole Paul Lynde shtick.
CNR OTOH while loved Match Game said it cramped his style in terms of getting work in the theater which he loved. With a distance of 3000 miles between New York and LA one couldn't always do both. To CNR's credit however unlike PL he was able to get plenty of work doing what he enjoyed, theater and opera.
|by Anonymous||reply 72||07/26/2020|
I had friends in college who worked with him in summer stock in Glorida (it might have been the Mr. Burt Teynold DinnervThestre), they said he was the nicest and most professional man in the business but was easily taken advantage oI’ve always liked him.
|by Anonymous||reply 73||07/26/2020|
I think r73 needs an MRI!
|by Anonymous||reply 74||07/26/2020|
[quote]He needed balance with the off-kilter leading lady, [R28], not for edge. —Anonymous
Reilly did not play opposite Channing, r65, David Burns did that. Reilly played opposite the original Mary Sunshine Eileen Brennan. The contrast was to be between the traditional older couple, Channing and Burns, with the eccentric younger couple, Reilly and Brennan. That is not what is expected in a traditional musical comedy. In most latter major productions, Jerry Herman had ultimate control over casting and always chose traditional juveniles, not eccentrics.
juveniles in this context does not mean simply young. It is a theatrical term for when there is an older leading couple and a younger supporting couple. The younger characters are called the juveniles. Herman wrote the parts for stereotypical pairs but Champion wanted to surprise the audience by breaking the stereotypes.
|by Anonymous||reply 75||07/26/2020|
Reilly apparently was a very good acting coach, a director and maintained long friendships with a lot of people in show business. Lynde--not so much. Both of them survived partly on dinner theater and the straw hat circuit. I think both did voice work which is how they would have managed if they were active now.
|by Anonymous||reply 76||07/26/2020|
Channing was *not* a traditional leading lady, r75. The entire original production was painted in broad strokes.
|by Anonymous||reply 77||07/26/2020|
Ditto R73. The Burt Reynolds Dinner Theater must have a million stories. Have met lots of gay guys who were there in the mid-80s who met CNR and loved him. And watched the Burt/Loni drama. Heard only good things about CNR.
|by Anonymous||reply 78||07/26/2020|
[quote]Mr. Burt Teynold DinnervThestre
Hey buddy, you okay?
|by Anonymous||reply 79||07/27/2020|
Simply put the man was a treasure.
Thank you Charles Nelson Reilly, you were loved and are missed.
|by Anonymous||reply 80||07/27/2020|
What did he say about George Maharis' cock?
|by Anonymous||reply 81||07/27/2020|
r81 You'll have to ask Merv about that.
|by Anonymous||reply 82||07/27/2020|
Does anybody remember him being brought on as a co-host on "Dinah!" for its final year? The other thread about Dick Van Dyke's ill-fated stint on the final season of Carol Burnett reminded me.
One of the absolute worst, most cringeworthy things I've ever seen on TV was CNR and Dinah attempting to perform Steve Martin's "King Tut", a novelty hit that really only worked within the Steve Martin persona. It seemed like they hadn't rehearsed it at all, didn't know the song well enough to perform it, let alone understand it or why it was funny, and it was a disaster from start to finish. Two seasoned pros with probably a century of performing experience between them, and they couldn't salvage what was a terrible idea to begin with. I've looked for clips of it on YouTube to see if it was as bad as I remember, but there are none.
|by Anonymous||reply 83||07/31/2020|
|by Anonymous||reply 84||07/31/2020|
"One of the absolute worst, most cringeworthy things I've ever seen on TV was CNR and Dinah attempting to perform Steve Martin's "King Tut", a novelty hit that really only worked within the Steve Martin persona. "
Oh my God. Whose idea was THAT? It seems so insane. But then again maybe not. Dinah Shore did a version of the Rolling Stones' "Satisfaction" on her show, too. Or that's what I heard. That must have been surreal.
|by Anonymous||reply 85||07/31/2020|
I'm a fan. HIs one-man show, Life of Reilly, is fantastic -ignore the troll. It's autobiographical, and a history of show business at the same time. He was a great storyteller. After his early successes as a stage actor he became a successful director of operas and musicals in regional theaters.
|by Anonymous||reply 86||07/31/2020|
Reilly was a genius.
|by Anonymous||reply 87||07/31/2020|
CNR said that when an NBC exec told him they “don’t let queers on television” he decided to get on as many TV shows as he could in revenge, which explains some of his more dubious career choices:
|by Anonymous||reply 88||07/31/2020|
R88, that show looks fun. With Dr. Smith from Lost in Space! OMG!
|by Anonymous||reply 89||07/31/2020|
[quote]—Oranges Smoranges, who cares?
I believe you mean "Oranges, Boranges, who cares?"
I must defend the classics!
|by Anonymous||reply 90||07/31/2020|
Oops, apparently it's "Oranges Poranges, who cares?"
All these years I've been wrong!
|by Anonymous||reply 91||07/31/2020|
I had a crush on Dr Smith when I was a gayling.
|by Anonymous||reply 92||08/01/2020|
Ewww r92 why? Daddy issues? I mean come on, there were two other hot men on that show and Dr. Smith was not one of them. Unless of course you were turned on by his constant back problems and The Pain!
|by Anonymous||reply 93||08/03/2020|
OP, Charles has a message for you
|by Anonymous||reply 94||08/03/2020|
That video R88 is cringe worthy. I want my 2 minutes back.
|by Anonymous||reply 95||08/03/2020|
Charles will always hold a special place in my heart for going out of his way to get me house seats for the Broadway revival he directed of "The Gin Game" starring his very good friends Julie Harris and Charles Durning. Afterwards, I got to go backstage. He found out I was going to NY (from LA), and called me to let me know whom to contact about the tickets. I knew him as a customer from a store I worked at in West Hollywood. A very kind man who always gladly spoke with people who approached him.
|by Anonymous||reply 96||08/03/2020|
R93 He was poignant
|by Anonymous||reply 97||08/03/2020|
I’ve also heard nothing but good things about him. Not a bitter old queen. Kind to people. Not a horn dog trying to sleep with every young star struck gay kid. But could occasionally get nasty when really drunk.
|by Anonymous||reply 98||08/03/2020|
R96, what store in WEHO?
|by Anonymous||reply 99||08/03/2020|
He had a wonderful one man show late in life called, “I’m not dead yet”. It was wonderful
|by Anonymous||reply 100||08/04/2020|
He'll have to change the title now!
|by Anonymous||reply 101||08/04/2020|
|by Anonymous||reply 102||08/04/2020|
Sucks to be dead
|by Anonymous||reply 103||Last Wednesday at 4:05 AM|