Mary Tyler Moore Made It After All

What a loss! She was highly talented and a trendsetter on television. On the Dick Van Dyke show she insisted that she would wear pants and not a dress like the stereotypical TV wife. On her own show she was an independent career woman. The original script had her as divorced, but network execs feared this would be too controversial. It’s easy to forget how much things have changed for women, and how people like MTM pushed those changes forward.

I also admired her for her recovery from alcoholism and her openness about her journey. Although I can’t reveal the details, I know she inspired many other women to make the same journey from the moment she entered treatment.

I like to think that she is heaven with Chuckles the Clown now, laughing very hard.

Author: Keith Humphreys

Keith Humphreys is the Esther Ting Memorial Professor of Psychiatry at Stanford University and an Honorary Professor of Psychiatry at Kings College London. His research, teaching and writing have focused on addictive disorders, self-help organizations (e.g., breast cancer support groups, Alcoholics Anonymous), evaluation research methods, and public policy related to health care, mental illness, veterans, drugs, crime and correctional systems. Professor Humphreys' over 300 scholarly articles, monographs and books have been cited over thirteen thousand times by scientific colleagues. He is a regular contributor to Washington Post and has also written for the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Washington Monthly, San Francisco Chronicle, The Guardian (UK), The Telegraph (UK), Times Higher Education (UK), Crossbow (UK) and other media outlets.

2 thoughts on “Mary Tyler Moore Made It After All”

  1. Yep, in the MTM show she had episodes about sexual infidelity among, gasp, SINGLE people, including herself. But what I admired most about her was that, along with "straight men" such as Dan Ackroyd, Audrey Meadows, Andy Griffith, she had perfect timing for the softball pitch that the crazy characters could hit out of the park. Georgia and Ted and Lou and Murray needed her like (Bill) Murray and Belushi and Chase needed Ackroyd. Of course, she was genuinely funny on her own, and particularly in some of her later pix, such as Flirting With Disaster and Labor Pains. I was only ten or twelve when her show was big, but I knew that all of my friends' Dads had crushes on her. She was the exemplar of modern independent womanhood that was sexy but non-threatening.

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