Sunday, February 9, 2020

Robert Conrad R.I.P.
















Dead at 84 (just shy of number 85), of natural causes, at his home in Malibu, CA.
Gravel-voiced tough-guy (who was the 5'8" in his studio bio only in cowboy boot heels), who achieved television immortality by playing the western version of 007, and thwarting criminal masterminds in perfect 4 act teleplays on The Wild, Wild West from 1965-1969, wherein he did most of his own fights and stunts. Then again as a closer-than-most as Pappy Boyington on Baa Baa Black Sheep, which famously was a show that wouldn't die, a star who was embarrassingly popular, and launched any number of careers of lesser stars through the Universal Studios/Stephen J. Canell/Donald Bellisario  TV dynasties.
I met Conrad several times in the 1980s, and the real Pappy Boyington once in the mid-1980s at about age 70, and they were more alike than you'd imagine (including looking like if you looked at him cross-eyed, even at age 70, and he'd have taken a poke at you. Really. And given you a run for your money.) Boyington's motto was "Show me a hero, and I'll show you a bum", which I think rang true to Conrad's persona and style. But Conrad was gracious and personable by all accounts, and didn't let his TV personas go to his head. He just knew he was delivering the goods the fans wanted, in his prime.
Survived by a wife, an ex-wife, and eight children between the two marriages.

Gonna be quite a few faces on tonight's In Memoriam section.

15 comments:

15Fixer said...

Always liked Robert Conrad. Glad he went peacefully.

Robert said...

(Hope this isn't a dupe- google crashed when I signed in. Please delete, if so.)

Bummer. Conrad came aboard the Constellation CV-64 and was interviewed on the ship's TV system. He seemed like a regular guy and appeared mildly embarrassed when asked to recreate the "go ahead, knock it off my shoulder" battery commercial. I crossed paths with Captain Jackie Cooper once on the Connie. Those TV guys must like the Navy.

kurt9 said...

Robert Conrad was great! I used to watch the "Wild Wild West" as a kid. He also played G Gordon Liddy in a TV movie about him.

Anonymous said...

A pretty good run
BG

Unknown said...

He was my hero sorry I didn't get to meet him

RandyGC said...

Wild Wild West the original Steampunk.

I remember ROTFL during some network silliness when Lou Ferrigno walked up to Conrad, put a battery on his shoulder, and then knocked it off.

I loved Black Sheep despite the Hollywood silliness that got worse as time went on, some what due to Conrad, but who am I kidding, mostly because of the Corsairs, the real stars of the show.

RIP

John Wilder said...

I would bike down to my brother's job (desk clerk at a hotel) on Sunday and watch Wild Wild West on TBS in the back office while we got breakfast.

They don't make 'em like that anymore - the show or the star.

Anonymous said...

He was my first love....rest in peace.

Unknown said...

Rest in peace. Robert Loved your show. The stunts were amazing

Unknown said...

He and ross will be together again.

Anonymous said...

RIP Robert Conrad and thanks for showing a 60's era kid how a real tough guy behaves to the bad guys and the ladies!

RIP

Unknown said...

RIP Conrad Robert Falk (birth name). Loved you in Palm Springs Weekend with Connie Stevens Troy Donahue, Stephanie Powers.

Unknown said...

I've been recently watching the WWW. I love it. I'm glad he and Arte are together again.

James said...

RIP Robert.I has a friend who did a bit of acting in L.A. and met Robert at a gathering of The Wild Bunch Of Hollywood,a group were many times you pulled actors for the crazy/insane/tough guy parts for shows and movies.He said was a very nice guy and gave him so aksed for advice in regards to the industry,no better then you attitude that my friend met many times in working as a extra on movies with limited speaking roles

mike18xx said...

He was a class act, all the way. (He would never find work in today's SJW-run Hollywood due to his non-Left politics.)