Most knew him as handyman Dwayne Schneider on “One Day At A Time,” but I first knew comedian/actor Pat Harrington Jr. as Guido Panzini from the old "Steve Allen Show."
Harrington died Wednesday in Los Angeles at age 86, says USA Today.
His best and longest role was “Schneider” on Norman Lear's “One Day At A Time” (1975-84) which earned him an Emmy Award and Golden Globe as best supporting actor. He was such a favorite that Harrington’s “Schneider” was nominated as a best “Nosiest Neighbor” in the 2003 TV Land Awards.
But I remember him from his 1960 comedy album (probably played on WNOP-AM) called “Pat Harrington Jr.as Guido Panzini and Bill Dana as kookie as ever.” Harrington did his crazy Italian, and Dana did his Jose Jimenez, two politically incorrect characters you never hear on the airwaves today.
The comedy LP was an outgrowth of Harrington’s late 1950s “man on the street” comedy bits on the old “Steve Allen Show” with Dana, Don Knotts, Tom Poston and Louis Nye. What a great collection of talent Allen had!
Harrington also voiced “The Inspector” cartoons. And over 63 years on television (1949-2012), his credits included everything from “Hot In Cleveland,” “King of Queens,” “The Golden Girls” and “Murder She Wrote” to “The Beverly Hillbillies,” “The Munsters,” “The Flying Nun,” “Diagnosis Murder,” “McHale’s Navy,” “F Troop,” “Alfred Hitchcock Presents,” "The Partridge Family," “The Man From U.N.C.L.E,” "The Alcoa Hour" and “The Love Boat.”
Rest in peace, Schneider!