April 4, 1987
article was submitted to us by Cousin Monika! Thanks,
May Be Next Judy Holliday
C. Witbeck, Syndicated Columnist
"Everybody Loves Balki. He's very childish. So
am I," says blonde Rebecca (sic . . . we will correct the
spelling of her name in the rest of the article - Ed.) Arthur, known as
stewardess Mary Anne, the tease on ABC's "Perfect
Bronson Pinchot lusts after naive Mary Anne, and, unlike most
young TV characters, never gets to first base. A nice
touch in sex-obsessed TV.
Mary Anne is
the latest in a long line of ditsy Hollywood blondes, a cliche
that still retains flavor. To Rebeca Arthur, a small,
blonde lady with big eyes and a teacup poodle named Emmy usually
by her side, Mary Anne is more naive than dumb. Closer to
night Rebeca made her talk show debut with Johnny Carson, and
she was uneasy. Johnny gave her a look as if to say,
"Why are you here?" Rebeca went blank.
the Carson look of "Golly, is she going to fall
apart?" Rebeca began to babble. She got the
audience laughing, and when Carson repeated the question to an
earlier guest, Alan Thicke, on what he was doing after the show
(Thicke was heading for a benefit hockey match), Rebeca told the
truth, "Do my laundry, I guess."
bombed with Johnny even though he asked her back, Rebeca was
still down the following day. "I've been watching
Johnny Carson since I was a baby," she declared.
"Finally, I get on his show, and I goof."
pre-interview with a Carson assistant, Rebeca told stories for
an hour. But on camera she couldn't remember the
stories. Only one stayed in her head, and she knew better
than to tell that one.
Don't get the
idea Rebeca Arthur is dumb. She admit being a lousy
waitress, a terrible bank teller, and a pretty fair private eye,
working three years for a man who specialized in missing
persons, lost children.
When not out
on leg work, she attended auditions, and finally landed jobs
with "Guiding Light" and "Search for
hesitated about coming to Hollywood," Rebeca notes,
"because I knew the town must be loaded with blondes.
I'd be engulfed."
true. Within a month she worked "Remington
Steele," then came "TV Bloopers," a Rodney
Dangerfield special, "Newhart," a TV movie "About
Last Night," and an NBC pilot on women hairdressers with
Vicki Lawrence, one that lost out to "Golden
Girls." A seventh month drought followed before
"Perfect Strangers" signed Rebeca for a guest
spot. Producers liked her so much as Jennifer's roommate,
the two ladies became regulars.
on hiatus now, and go back in May so as to be ready in case
there's a director's strike this summer," Rebeca
explains. "I didn't want to stop."