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The Mary Tyler Moore Show: Ted's Wedding (1975)
Season 6, Episode 9
9/10
The wedding of Ted and Georgette
22 January 2020
Mary hosts a "let's be nicer to Ted" lunch but Murray and Lou make their excuses so it is only Ted and Georgette in attendance. When Ted proposes marriage yet again, Georgette holds him to it: they will get married right now. Lou and Murray are summoned, as is Sue Ann who apparently keeps everything needed for an impromptu wedding on stand-by. A minister (John Ritter) is called to attend to an unspecified "emergency", and arrives in tennis gear.

Another strong, assured, straight-ahead comedy episode.
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9/10
"And mine's black!"
21 January 2020
Mary joins the 'Big Sister' program to mentor a delinquent girl. Sue Ann, in line for an award, promptly joins too as it will help her chances of winning.

Mary has a few awkward dealings with her girl, sarcastic shoplifter Francie (Mackenzie Phillips) while an enthusiastic Sue Ann goes crazy befriending and assimilating into the culture of her girl Celestine (Tamu Blackwell), who's black. When money goes missing at the office Mary vacillates about asking Francie while Sue Ann dives right in to discover what happened.

It is all pretty funny and breezes along nicely. Lou is offscreen much of the time with a toothache leaving Mary in charge and dealing with the purchase of a helicopter.
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10/10
Inspired
20 January 2020
Probably the show's most famous episode, for good reason.

It is very funny and everything flows perfectly.

Everyone has some great bits. Ted's newscast is a riot. The final act is all about Mary, and it is superb.
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The Mary Tyler Moore Show: Mary's Aunt (1975)
Season 6, Episode 6
8/10
Did you ever meet Churchill
19 January 2020
Mary's "aunt", renowned journalist Flo Meredith (Eileen Heckart), comes to visit. Unfortunately Flo has a habit of inadvertently one-upping people (I mean, she HAS seen and done it all...)

When she meets Lou and the one-upping continues, sparks fly.

This is a great episode, mainly because Heckart is just so good.
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7/10
The redemption of Ted
17 January 2020
After Ted auditions for a game show in New York the newsroom regulars realise they don't want him to go.

Pretty funny episode and another step towards the redemption of Ted as he becomes less obnoxious and generally more sympathetic, though not much smarter.
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The Mary Tyler Moore Show: Murray in Love (1975)
Season 6, Episode 4
8/10
Another personal crisis for Murray
16 January 2020
Well done episode. Murray reveals to Lou that he is in love with Mary - something that has been hinted-at a few times in earlier episodes.

In the subplot Ted feels left out as no one ever comes to him for help. A sympathetic Mary dredges up a problem she has (an annoying drop-in neighbour at her new apartment) and gives it to Ted to solve.

The neighbour issue is a real one. Mary Kay Place plays the chirpy problem neighbour and Penny Marshall is funny as her deadpan flatmate.

Ted is still dim and annoying but not so obnoxious these days.
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The Mary Tyler Moore Show: Mary's Father (1975)
Season 6, Episode 3
8/10
Is this is long story?
15 January 2020
Mary works closely with priest Terry Brian (Ed Flanders) on a couple of shows. He is a pretty charismatic guy and Ted is pretty enamored with him, as is Mary. When Terry tells Mary he plans to quit the priesthood she is mortified, believing that it is because he has fallen in love with her.

Flanders is very appealing and funny here, and the episode is a good one. Both Murray and Lou tell obscure stories to Terry hoping to discourage his infatuation with Mary. The final scene is great too.

When Terry and Mary go out to lunch, the restaurant set is that of Mary's old apartment that she moved out of the previous episode.
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The Mary Tyler Moore Show: Mary Moves Out (1975)
Season 6, Episode 2
8/10
Fun standard episode
14 January 2020
Fun episode with each of the regulars at their best.

Mary feels she is in a rut and soon has her friends feeling the same way. Then Mary does something about it.
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8/10
Emotional
13 January 2020
Well-done emotional episode. Lou's ex-wife Edie is getting married and invites Lou (and Mary) to the wedding. However Lou hasn't moved on.

The wedding scene is brilliantly acted. The final scene in the bar is fantastic too. Both pivot on the relationships that have developed between the regular characters.

Van Heflin's niece Nora appears as Lou's daughter. Pat Campbell makes the last of three appearances as the barman at a nearby bar.
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7/10
How about a beer and some cheetos?
13 December 2019
Awkward story but well done episode overall. This one pivots on Mary's characteristic of overthinking things while trying always to be noble and honest.

The WJM regulars get in enough jokes to keep it funny even if the main story is about Mary's dislike of her new boyfriend's bratty kid. I love Mary and Lou's lifesaver scene. Ted has some great moments, embarrassing Mary in his attempts to be thoughtful. And Sue Ann is just desperate to be supportive.

Laurence Luckinbill (The Boys in the Band) is Mary's date and Lee Montgomery (Ben and other horrors) his obnoxious son. Mabel Albertson (Bewitched, That Girl) is as condescending here as she was in those other sitcoms.
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10/10
Hey, let's put on a show!
11 December 2019
The series has really hit its stride and firmly established its characters by this point. This episode is a well crafted expertly done farce where Ted, Lou, Mary, Murray get to hit their comedy specialties.

Leonard Frey is fantastic as a deadpan nerd clear in his ambition to become a sports announcer. It even has Bernie Kopell in it.

Very memorable and one of the funniest episodes.
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9/10
Teddy Awards
10 December 2019
Solid newsroom episode exploring various reactions as the Teddy Award nominations come in.

All the regulars get some out there comedy to do. Great fun.
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10/10
The superb Barbara Colby returns
9 December 2019
Mary receives a visit from the prostitute Sherry (Barbara Colby) she met in jail, who now wants to go straight. Mary encourages Sherry in her ambition to become a dress designer.

Colby is fantastic and the main set-piece of Mary in a gaudy and revealing dress designed by Sherry is great.

Barbara Colby went on to play the regular role of Phyllis Lindstrom's employer and confidant in the spin-off Phyllis but was killed in a drive-by shooting after filming just three episodes.
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7/10
Petrolheads will love it
7 December 2019
Enjoyable fun focused on Australian petrolheads racing their hotted up cars.

There are some great cars seen, several well shot race sequences, many spectacular driving stunts, and some beautifully shot scenery. The widescreen presentation is well exploited.

Also of interest is the 1980s New Wave fashion and hairstyles. That part was really cool.

The script is OK but pretty thin and a bit clunky. Terry Serio in the lead is OK. Vangelis Mourikis (Tony) gives a good performance... and has some cool costumes. Deborah Conway looks great and has screen presence but her acting isn't the best. Maybe they should have had her sing a couple of songs instead of talking?

Plenty of very recognisable Australian actors appear in support roles so it is fun spotting them.
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7/10
A flop
6 December 2019
Lou yearns for the excitement of old when he was an investigative journalist so Mary encourages him to seek out a story. Lou investigates a local politician, but is disappointed to find no dirt on him at all. Mary convinces him to put together a documentary of the squeaky clean politician anyway.

Well done newsroom episode with a nice appearance from Sheree North as Lou's girlfriend Charlene. It is a fairly standard episode and Mary has the funniest bits - especially the fantastic final act.

James Jeter whose brutish visage added to the sense of menace in cult film Assault on Precinct 13 (1976) appears briefly as a skeptical bar patron.
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10/10
Fantastic Phyllis Lindstrom
4 December 2019
Fantastic Phyllis episode.

Phyllis is flabbergasted when Lars asks her to cut her spending. When it is revealed they are nearly broke Phyllis tries to look for a job but she has no useful qualification, no experience, no practical skills.

Every scene sparkles in this episode.

It features Doris Roberts, Phyllis in some fantastic costumes, and another peek inside the Lindstrom apartment.

This was Phyllis's final MTM episode before moving to her spinoff series, the premise of which pivoted on the low finances / lack of job skills angle.
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The Mary Tyler Moore Show: The System (1975)
Season 5, Episode 17
7/10
Fun
3 December 2019
Lou comes in on a successful betting system developed by novice gambler Ted.

Fun episode with a couple of great scenes. I loved Mary's pom-pom girl story. (Early in the series Mary said she was a pom-pom girl. Then she wasn't a pom-pom girl, she was a cheerleader. I guess there is a difference between the two.)

As Murray says, his wife won't let him gamble.

Sportscaster Andy (John Gabriel) has a brief bit. Georgette has a small but funny part.
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7/10
Well done
2 December 2019
Well done episode.

Mary finally convinces Lou to let her actually produce the news as befitting her new Producer title. As problems and disagreements emerge among the crew and they all want to defer to Lou, Mary learns to assert her authority.

Nicely done story. Ted tries to influence Mary as expected but isn't too obnoxious. For me the funniest bits were the snide jibes from Sue Ann, put-out when another woman Producer at the station suddenly receives favourable publicity.
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5/10
An episode to forget
1 December 2019
When Mary is promoted to Producer Ted tricks her into meeting him at a restaurant for a date then pushes his way into her apartment for a goodnight kiss. Soon his lurid tales of their hot affair have station gossip going into overdrive. Mary is devastated that everyone believes it and nothing she can say will change their minds, and that people are treating her differently.

The subject matter is very distasteful killing whatever funny lines there might have been. There's the sexual harassment angle, plus I hate the idea of telling the truth but not being believed.
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The Mary Tyler Moore Show: A Girl Like Mary (1974)
Season 5, Episode 14
9/10
The black one
29 November 2019
Very funny episode.

When Lou advertises for a woman to present a regular news piece on the show there's interest from unexpected people.

All the regulars get really funny bits. Mary is more comic than usual. Georgette zanier. Sue Ann's heartfelt meeting with Mary and manic audition takes her to new heights.

Nice guest turn from the talented Rosalind Cash.
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The Mary Tyler Moore Show: Neighbors (1974)
Season 5, Episode 13
6/10
Drop-in neighbour
27 November 2019
Lou moves in to Rhoda's old apartment and becomes an annoying neighbour, which creates tensions at work.

This one reuses familiar elements. Ted once toyed with moving in to Mary's building to her horror - Lou helped avert that disaster. Then Lou started showing up at Mary's each night, causing tensions. In another episode Phyllis arranged to sell Lou's house but he felt terrible about selling it and pulled out of the deal.

Overall this episode is quite mean spirited but not very funny. The running time is padded out with complaints and blathering from Ted.

This time Mary is dating some new guy not the WJM sportscaster. Whether that created tensions at the station is never explored.
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The Mary Tyler Moore Show: A Son for Murray (1974)
Season 5, Episode 12
10/10
Do you know how many times I had to get up at 3 am and tell Edie to go change the baby?
26 November 2019
Brilliant story, believable reactions, strong jokes, many laughs.

Murray decides that while he loves his three daughters, he wants a son. His wife doesn't want another child. Then there's over population to consider.

All well written and acted. Murray isn't being too reasonable and gets whiny, but that's true to his character. Wonderful final scene.

Mary is back dating her employee, nice but dull sportscaster Andy (John Gabriel), though she was recently also dating John Saxon's character too.
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7/10
OK episode
25 November 2019
Ted's never-seen mother gets engaged then decides to live with her boyfriend rather than get married, prompting emotional reactions from Ted. Then Ted gets to meet his mother's boyfriend.

Ted is funny though much the same material was covered in episode Father's Day.

The episode was directed by Mary Tyler Moore and the script has her off screen much of the time, vacationing in Mexico. This leaves a big gap.

Nolan Leary is great as Ted's future father-in-law.
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7/10
Lusty Sue Ann
24 November 2019
Funny episode focused on Sue Ann.

To evade the lusty Sue Ann, Lou sends Mary to a conference in Chicago in his place. Mary is horrified to discover she and Sue Ann have adjoining rooms there. Sue Ann insists on partying with whichever men she can round up and that Mary come along, however the only men Sue Ann can find are only interested in Mary.

This one effectively exploits Sue Ann's habit of switching from sweet to earthy in a second, and her vanity, pride, and lust characteristics.
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Miss Jones and Son (1977– )
6/10
Paula Wilcox
23 November 2019
The wonderful Paula Wilcox was a popular star of Man About the House and this served as a follow-up of sorts for her. Though Robin (Richard O'Sullivan) was the main character of that series and always first billed, every episode featured Paula in a key role. And very often she was the lead character of an episode. This time Paula as the title character is unequivocally the lead.

Paula is delightful again but the support cast is less than riveting. (There is also a big cast changeover between the first and second series.) The scripts aren't very funny and lack strong jokes. The characters are archetypes and the stories are pretty thin, nearly always relying on misunderstandings and mistaken identity while characters pull confused faces or try to cover something up. Often Paula's character Liz Jones is covering up the fact she has a baby or is unmarried.

Unlike her MATH character, Paula's character here is fairly onenote and superficial: generally nice, often silly, always chatty.

The first series ends with the promise of a new romance for Liz but the opening scene of series two explains he went back to his wife. It is a pity as this was the only storyline I found interesting.

If not for Paula's participation I expect there would have been very little interest in this series (then or now). It is of interest only to see Paula's next big role after MATH.
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