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Elder Statesman
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I heard about the death of actor-icon Robert Conrad last week. I never got to meet him on the autograph circuit, as I have with others that are no longer here. When you think about it, the Wild Wild West was a very creative show, steam punk before steam punk was a thing. Setting itself apart from the then current 007 inspired spy shows on at the time.
I am amazed at the television shows that were on during the 1960's and 70's, following the golden years of the 1950's, when live dramas written, directed, and performed by some of the best talent that would go on to the movies and create some of the greatest cinema over the next two decades. Ten years later, television would be referred to as the "boob tube" as my 2nd grade teacher would call it. But, these shows, the bastard children of Playhouse 90, and other programs, are the ones that survived, and would become potential franchises some 50 years later, leaving most dramas pretty much forgotten, Ben Casey anyone?
Robert Conrad enjoyed his icon status with James West and always embraced it, playing him three more times, in Wild Wild West reunion movies, and once on Saturday Night Live when he hosted it.
I thought he was great in the Sean Connery political satire, Wrong is Right, where Conrad played a hawkish general right out of Dr. Stranglove, hey just occured to me, James Bond and Jim West in the same movie, awesome sauce!
 

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Super Moderator
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24,372 Posts
Sorry to hear he passed recently. I remember him primarily for the WWW but he also made a lot of cameo roles in later series and on the talk show circuits. :(
 

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Super Moderator
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707 Posts
I hadn't heard. I really liked him in the Wild Wild West and in the blacksheep squadron where he played major Boyington. I didn't see much of him after that and assumed he retired wealthy enough to live a nice life. I hope that was the case.
 
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