Specifically, Jack Klugman as Oscar Madison on the TV version of The Odd Couple”. I was just young enough to have missed the movie and just old enough to have caught the re-runs, so the Klugman version is the one I fell in love with. What can I say, when I was 10 years old, I thought a big-mouthed, middle-aged sportswriter with a messy ass house, a weekly poker game and a dirty baseball cap was the coolest shit I’d ever seen. Yeah, his roommate was a stuffy dick and used to cockblock him on numerous occasions, but rent is no fucking joke in New York City so you gotta do what you gotta do.
That shit had too much charm to me, and still does, and as much as I love Walter Matthau as an actor (who doesn’t?) Jack Klugman will always be Oscar Madison for me. Whatever I wanted (or still want) out of life isn’t at all far from what Oscar had, and that hasn’t really changed from the first time I saw it ’til now. To me, Oscar Madison had shit wired, even if his buddy was always putting him through changes.
Thing is, it’s just as fair to say Jack Klugman was my first hero, right? I mean, had it been the wrong actor in his spot, I might have ended up wanting to be Deney Terrio or some shit.
So thanks for that, Jack.