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Remembering Ed Asner, He Had Good “Spunk” And So Much More

August 31, 2021

Mary (Tyler Moore) as Mary Richards is being interviewed for a great job possibility and the superb actor, Ed Asner, who died days back at age 91, so memorably assesses the Richards character thusly: “You have spunk, (Mary brightens) I hate spunk!!”

It began a great relationship between Ed as “Lou Grant” (Mary’s often  “Mister GRAAAANT) and Mary/Mary Richards on the seminal “Mary Tyler Moore Show,” which has lost stellar performers Gavin MacLeod, the great Cloris Leachman and now Asner all within a year.

Perhaps you know awards, especially “competitive” ones in acting are apples/oranges, however it is truly impressive that Mr. Asner racked up more such Emmys in television than any other male performer.

Asner was involved in so many worthy causes, so often speaking his mind, excoriating some who deserved it and minimum opened our minds with his advanced thinking.

He surprised and perhaps disappointed me (not really, as it is an indelible memory) the one time after his fine last show appearance in “Grace.”

First of all, I attempted with an at best mediocre German accent, his classic role as Axel Jordache in the great, great mini series, Rich Man Poor Man based on Irwin Shaw’s prescient, brilliant book.

I chose the “do not feel so sorry for yourself, you have food in your belly and a roof over your head,” and Mr. Asner liked it but chose “there are 2 saints in this bed, (he shared it with Dorothy McGuire as his wife, a religious woman) that is one too many for me.” Next Axel gets up and out of the bed.

Subsequently in Asner/Andy B. I am pretty positive regarding then U.S. President Barack H. Obama (I still am) but to my surprise, Mr. Asner does not feel that way. He walked away.

So what, as I think it is funny (we can always do better, but you know my politics is based on we can do so much worse, which sorry to some of you, was never better illustrated by the next president) and now Ed walks away to hopefully a better place. He deserves it for all he did as a performer, activist and family man.

He had the right (left) kind of spunk and so much more!!

 

Ed Asner 1977.JPG

The magnificent Ed Asner, pictured above.

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