Grade • A
DVD •From 1972-78, “The Bob Newhart Show” was one of the funniest half-hours on television.
It may have been a bit overlooked, what with sharing CBS’ Saturday-night schedule with shows like “All in the Family,” “The Mary Tyler Moore Show,” “M*A*S*H” and “The Carol Burnett Show,” but Newhart, as psychologist Bob Hartley, was the ultimate straight man to a cast of crazy characters: orthodontist Jerry Robinson (Peter Bonerz), receptionist Carol Kester (Marcia Wallace), neighbor/airline navigator Howard Borden (Bill Daily) and patients like Mr. Carlin (Jack Riley), Mr. Peterson (John Fiedler) and Mrs. Bakerman (Florida Friebus). And Bob and his wife, Emily (Suzanne Pleshette), had chemistry to spare.
It was a show about adults — Newhart refused to allow the writers to make Bob and Emily parents — but it’s funny for everybody.
The complete series (142 episodes over six seasons) is being released in one boxed set that includes the original unaired pilot, audio commentaries, a gag reel and “The Bob Newhart Show 19th Anniversary” from 1991.