“Hi, Bob!” The fact that such a simple salutation could become a TV catchphrase—not to mention the basis for a drinking game when The Bob Newhart Show re-aired on Nick at Nite in the ’90s—is a testament to the classic 1972–78 CBS comedy’s everlasting appeal. This fall marks 50 years since the debut of the sitcom, in which the successful stand-up comedian played Chicago psychologist Bob Hartley opposite Suzanne Pleshette as his wife, Emily, surrounded by an offbeat neighbor, kooky co-workers, and Bob’s clinically neu- rotic patients. Now 93, Newhart has continued to appear in some of the most beloved comedies of recent years, winning an Emmy in 2013 for his first of many guest appearances as Sheldon Cooper’s TV host idol, Professor Proton, on The Big Bang Theory . To celebrate the golden anniversary of his first iconic TV character, Watch asked Newhart to reminisce about his namesake show’s landmark success.
Bob Newhart as Bob Hartley, counseling a clown about his problems in a 1972 episode of The Bob Newhart Show
SEPTEMBER / OCTOBER • 2022
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