People who weren’t there say the 1970s was full of bad TV. It’s all about context. When we were kids, The Love Boat was a must-watch show. Just because it’s cheesy now, doesn’t take away from what it was at the time!
Fred Grandy played purser Gopher Smith and later, was elected to US congress to represent Iowa. When I met him, he was CEO of Goodwill Industries International and on a tour to promote the organization’s good works. This was at 900 CHML in Hamilton, a stop on the short-hair tour of my head through the years, where I hosted the midday talk show.
The man on the far left was Grandy’s fellow Goodwill mucky-muck who was on the road with him. No one remembers your name when you’re getting introduced alongside a former TV star!
Later, Grandy hosted a morning radio show, and most recently appeared on TV’s The Mindy Project. Although he’s best known as a slightly goofy TV character, he’s a smart, thoughtful man who’s done a lot of serious things. But on the show, Gopher was a big flirt.