• Joseph Campanella, a character actor who had a five-decade career that saw him in more than 200 TV and film roles, passed away yesterday. He was 93.
- KC's View:
I know this seems obscure, and some of you are saying, “Huh?” But I needed to take note of this today because Campanella was an important part of one of my favorite TV series when I was a kid. On the first season of “Mannix,” Campanella played Lew Wickersham, Joe Mannix’s boss at Intertect, a detective firm that relied on computers to solve crimes, not the instincts and fisticuffs that Mannix preferred. That set up the dramatic tension of the first season … and keep in mind, this was about man vs. computers in 1967-68!
The problem was that the show actually was ahead of its time, and the writers/producers didn’t quite know how to sustain the theme … and so they changed the format for the second season. But Campanella was great in season one (it is available on DVD), and I always kind of missed him when he was gone.
And that’s why I wanted to mention his passing. Point of personal privilege.