Thursday, December 15, 2011
BETTY WHITE IN BLACK AND WHITE
If you can't get enough of Betty White, here's a DVD collection of some of her shows from the fifties. There are two episodes of Life with Elizabeth that she did with Del Moore [three sketches per episode] in which they play a married couple. The skits range in quality from amusing to tiresome but all are well-acted. Betty reveals a very pleasant singing voice on an episode of the daytime variety show The Betty White Show. Betty surprises a young orphan (also named Betty) with a ton of gifts but it's hard to tell if the strangely subdued child is shell-shocked or annoyed that she didn't get the gift she wanted! Then there are two episodes of the sitcom A Date with the Angels in which Betty and Bill Williams play another married couple. On one episode stately Nancy Kulp [Miss Jane Hathaway of The Beverly Hillbillies] plays a highly sophisticated wife of a friend. Judging by these episodes, A Date with the Angels was pleasant but forgettable. Lastly, there's two episodes of yet another program called The Betty White Show [this one aired in the evening] which also has comedy sketches featuring Jimmy Boyd and the wonderful Reta Shaw. I have to confess I didn't like the Olga cleaning woman sketch any better than I did Carol Burnett's later charwoman routine. All in all, this is an interesting collection, however. White exhibited a bundle of comedic talent practically from the first.
Verdict: If you're not into the "fabulous fifties," there's always White in The Golden Girls. **1/2.