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The Joey Bishop Show aired from September 1961 until September 1965 on NBC and CBS.

This half-hour sitcom was a spin-off from The Danny Thomas Show ( even though it originally aired on rival NBC)

At its inception, this show focused on Joey Barnes ( Joey Bishop), a young assistant to Los Angeles press agent J.P. Willoughby ( John Griggs).

Joey was a softhearted guy who had tried to make himself out as something he wasn't to impress his family. Unfortunately for Joey, the family members were always trying to take advantage of his nonexistent influence with the big stars of Hollywood.

The show had far too many regular characters and by the middle of the first season, four of them were gone: Betty ( Virginia Vincent), Joey's older sister; Betty's unsuccessful salesman husband Frank ( Joe Flynn); Barbara ( Nancy Hadley), Mr Willoughby's secretary and Mr. Willoughby himself. However, Joey's mother ( Madge Blake), Stella ( Marlo Thomas) - his stagestruck sister and Larry ( Warren Berlinger), his younger brother, stayed on until the end of the first season.

At the start of the second season, both the format and the supporting cast had changed. Joey Barnes was now the host of a Tonight Show-type talk program that originated in New York. Stories revolved around his professional and personal life as a TV celebrity. Many guest stars appeared as themselves.

Joey was now married to a Texas girl named Ellie ( Abby Dalton), had a manager named Freddie ( Guy Marks)and lived in a Manhattan apartment. Later, Larry Corbett( Corbett Monica) became his manager. Hilda ( Mary Treen) was the Barnes' maid and Mr. Jillson ( Joe Besser) was the building superintendant.. In 1963, Ellie gave birth to a baby boy (played by actress Abby Dalton's real-life infant son, Matthew Smith.) Dr. Sam Nolan ( Joey Foreman), a pediatrician, joined the cast in 1964.

The Joey Bishop Show was unique in that it started out as a black and white sitcom. In the fall of 1962 it was switched to color and then went it went to CBS for it's final season it went back to black and white.

Here is Joey Bishop's Obituary from The New York Times

Joey Bishop, Rat Pack Comic, Dies at 89
Published: October 19, 2007

Joey Bishop, the long-faced comedian and the last surviving member of the Rat Pack, Frank Sinatra's celebrated retinue of the 1960's, died Wednesday night at his home in Newport Beach, Calif. He was 89.

His death was of multiple causes, said his longtime publicist, Warren Cowan.

Mr. Bishop was the least flamboyant of the Rat Pack and no match for the others Peter Lawford, Sammy Davis Jr., Dean Martin and Sinatra himself in their dedication to hell-raising.

But he shared in their phenomenal success in the early 1960s, when they headlined music and comedy shows in Las Vegas, appearing at the Sands, and made movies like Ocean's 11 and Sergeants 3. When John F. Kennedy, a friend of Sinatra's and a brother-in-law of Lawford's, was elected president in 1960, Mr. Bishop was master of ceremonies at the inaugural ball.

Mr. Bishop, a regular guest on television as a standup comedian, eventually had his own TV shows: a sitcom in which he played a talk show host, and later his own actual talk show, appearing on ABC in a short-lived challenge to Johnny Carson's Tonight Show. His sidekick on the set was a young Regis Philbin, who is now the co-host of his own syndicated morning talk show.

In his vigorous years, when Mr. Bishop was known as the Frown Prince and his income and fame were substantial, he indulged himself in a Rolls-Royce and a speedboat. But he seemed happiest when he was playing golf with his fellow comedians Buddy Hackett, Phil Foster and Dick Shawn. And unlike the others in The Pack, he remained married to the same woman, the former Sylvia Ruzga, for 58 years, until her death in 1999. They had a son, Larry.

There were times when he suggested that despite his friendship with Sinatra and his appreciation for all that he had done for his career, including seeing to it that he got roles in Rat Pack movies, he felt he was more the mascot of the Pack than a full-fledged member. A 2002 biography of him, by Michael Seth Starr, was titled Mouse in the Rat Pack.

But even the mascot gets to carry the ball, too, Mr. Bishop said, and many sources credit him with writing bright material for the rest of the pack.

Mr. Bishop had a talent for ad-libbing. He refused to memorize jokes. The kick is to think quickly, he told The Los Angeles Times in 1966. It's a great kick. That approach pleased Sinatra, who first saw Mr. Bishop perform in the early 1950s, at the Latin Quarter in Manhattan. Sinatra asked him to open for him at Bill Miller's Riviera, a club in Fort Lee, N.J. Soon, he was regularly opening for Sinatra and became known as Sinatra's comic. And he began getting jobs in first-rate clubs even when Sinatra was not on the bill.

He got laughs when he appeared one night at the Copacabana in Manhattan, and Marilyn Monroe suddenly appeared swathed in white ermine. I told you to sit in the truck, Mr. Bishop, thinking quickly, told her. When he got a small role in the movie The Naked and the Dead, he told another audience, he played both parts.

Joey Bishop was born Joseph Abraham Gottlieb in the Bronx on Feb. 3, 1918, the fifth child and third son of Jacob Gottlieb and the former Anna Siegel, immigrants from eastern Europe. When Joey was three months old, Jacob Gottlieb moved his family to Philadelphia, where he worked at odd jobs and ran a bicycle shop. Joey Gottlieb was interested in entertainment from an early age, doing impersonations of Edward G. Robinson, Fred Allen and Jimmy Durante. After dropping out of high school, he formed a music and comedy act with two friends. Calling themselves the Bishop Brothers, after an acquaintance who had let them use his car, they worked in Philadelphia, New York, Buffalo, Chicago, Cleveland and other cities, appearing in clubs with names like The Nut Club, and El Dumpo.

The team broke up when they were drafted into military service in World War II. Joining the Army, Mr. Bishop rose to sergeant, based at Fort Sam Houston in Texas.

After the war, he developed a solo act, appearing in New York clubs and attracting the attention of television producers. He appeared on What's My Line, a popular television show on CBS, and in many television specials. And he was a substitute host on The Tonight Show after Jack Parr left the job and before NBC hired Mr. Carson. Later, he was Carson's frequent guest and substitute.

Mr. Bishop's sitcom, The Joey Bishop Show, had a rocky run: first broadcast on NBC in 1961, it was canceled in 1964, then taken over by CBS until that network also canceled it, in 1965.

ABC then asked him to create The Joey Bishop Show as a late-night response to Mr. Carson's show. It had its debut in April 1967. Jack Gould, reviewing it for The New York Times, said the premier was awkward and parochial and that as host, Mr. Bishop had to learn to interview.

But its initial ratings were respectable as a parade of top celebrity guests came through to banter with the host. From some, Mr. Bishop managed to elicit some startling revelations. Buddy Hackett confessed he had been hooked on marijuana for four years. The singer Gary Crosby and the actor George Raft both revealed they had been alcoholics. And the comedian Redd Foxx broke into tears while recounting the obstacles he faced as black man in show business.

But the Bishop show never seriously challenged Mr. Carson's supremacy, and when Merv Griffin joined the late-night competition with his own talk show in 1969, Mr. Bishop's ratings plummeted. ABC canceled the show in the fall of 1969, and Mr. Bishop returned to nightclub work, guest appearances on TV variety shows and work as a substitute host for Mr. Carson.

In 1981, he returned to the spotlight to replace Mickey Rooney for four weeks in Sugar Babies, a Broadway production. He could not sing, as Mr. Rooney had, and instead played the mandolin.

Besides his son, Larry, a comic actor turned director and producer, Mr. Bishop is survived by two grandchildren and his companion, Nora Garabotti.

In his book, Mr. Starr described Mr. Bishop as a man who knew what he wanted, worked for years to achieve it, and then let it go much too quickly. ABC's cancellation of The Joey Bishop Show, Mr. Starr wrote, signaled the end of his career after a remarkable 10 years on top. Mr. Bishop was 51 at the time.

To read some articles about The Joey Bishop Show go to and and and and

To watch an episode of The Joey Bishop Show go to

For more on The Joey Bishop Show go to

To go to Tim's TV Showcase go to

To read about a strange crossover with The Andy Griffith Show go to

For an episode guide go to

For a Website dedicated to The Joey Bishop Show go to

For some Joey Bishop Show-related interview videos at the Archive of American Television go to

To watch the opening credits go to and and
Date: Tue January 10, 2006 � Filesize: 17.9kb � Dimensions: 223 x 380 �
Keywords: Joey Bishop Show


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