Tuesday, September 21, 2010
A True Angel
Monday's Man (I know it's Tuesday): David Doyle
There is always so much written about the women who played Charlie's Angels, but the unsung hero of the show has to be the character of John Bosley, played with humor and class by David Doyle. Intoducing himself in many episodes like he was 007, "Bosley, John Bosley", the character, more often than not, was called just Bosley. In fact, many episodes, you never hear his first name. It was like he was "Jeeves" the faithful butler, but he was more than that. Bosley was a member of the team, often going undercover, seducing women, and shooting the bad guys. The show may have centered on the three women, but Bosley was there getting computer readouts, monitoring the phones in the office, coordinating the sting, and still maintaining the financial records. In his undercover roles, he was usually assigned the menial jobs like valet, chauffer, bellhop, and occasionally played the "sugar daddy" to the Munroe sisters.
The character also had some romances with mature women during the run of the show. These romances never came to fruition. Like the Angels, the women he dated were either suspects, villains, or just a one episode love never to be heard from again.
Bosley was more than just a member of the team. He was the loving uncle who cared about the Angels and their well-being.
I believe that David Doyle brought that to the character. There have been many stories through the years, where he would take the new Angel under his wing and make her feel welcome. Cheryl Ladd even stated that if it wasn't for David, she wouldn't have made it through that first year.
In the pilot movie for Charlie's Angels, there were two characters who were the middlemen for Charlie. Bosley was the psuedo-investigator/office manager while Woodville, played by David Ogden Stiers, was the lawyer who coordinated with Charlie and was the direct link. When the show was going to series, it was decided they didn't need two men, so Woodville was dropped. In my own opinion, not because I love David Doyle, but looking at the characters as they were portrayed in the pilot, Woodville came across as pompous and snotty (or snooty, you pick) while Bosley came across as friendly and funny.
David Doyle also came across as friendly and funny. I loved seeing him appear on Match Game. He usually gave bizarre answers that rarely matched the contestant (not as bad as Patti Deutsch), but was always smiling and having a good time.
David was a staple on television appearing and guest starring on numerous shows like Lois and Clark where he played a real angel. His character, Mike, was a guardian angel who married Lois and Clark.
He played Uncle Ulysses on an ABC Weekend Specials episode called "Homer and the Wacky Doughnut Machine".
He also appeared in many TV-movies like, Archie: To Riverdale and Back Again where he played Mr. Weatherbee or The Stranger Within with Barbara Eden, George Grizzard, and Joyce Van Patten. His psychiatrist character from The Stranger Within hypnotizes Barbara Eden's character and finds out that the baby inside her is an alien that is possessing her!
Though he may be best known to audiences for his TV appearances, he was also seen on the big screen in films like Capricorn One, Coogan's Bluff, The Comeback, and the bizarre No Way to Treat a Lady.
His distinctive voice was perfect for voice-over work and many animated shows took advantage of his talent. During his later years he played Grandpa Pickles on Rugrats until he passed away from a heart attack.
The character of Bosely was played by Bill Murray in the big screen version of Charlie's Angels, but it is David Doyle that will be most remembered for the role. Along with Jaclyn Smith, he was the only other actor to appear in every episode of the show. He worked with some great talents over the years, but I've never read one word that ever put David in a negative light. I don't think that is a bad legacy to leave behind. Respected, loved, and admired.