Mary Tyler Moore

Change Of Habit, 1969

Born: December 29, 1936, in Brooklyn, NY.
Died: January 25, 2017, in Greenwich, CT.
Husbands: Dick Meeker (1956 - 1961?)
Grant Tinker (1962 - 1981)
Dr. S. Robert Levine (1982? - present)

Change Of Habit was an unusual film, to say the least (Elvis as a doctor, Mary as a nun ?!). It was Elvis' last screen role, and, for Mary it was a rest stop between two Emmy-award-winning TV series.

Mary's first TV appearance was in 1955 as the pixie "Happy Hotpoint" that dances on top of the Hotpoint stove for the TV commercial, shown during the Ozzie And Harriet Show. After a brief stint as the unseen (except for her legs!) secretary on Richard Diamond, Private Detective, she got her big break as Laura Petrie on The Dick Van Dyke Show (1961 - 1966). Laura was quite possibly the very first TV-sitcom-wife to have truly funny lines, not to mention a personality (OK, except maybe Alice on The Honeymooners) and Mary played it to the hilt. While neither one was a "comedian", both Mary and Dick were excellent comic actors, and that, along with Carl Reiner's writing, made for a high quality show! Unlike many of the forgettable series of the time, this one stands the test of time, and can still crack you up.

After the series ended, Mary tried her hand at a couple of films. She made Thoroughly Modern Millie, with Julie Andrews, and a true journey into wierdness called What's So Bad About Feeling Good, with George Peppard (it's VERY sixties!) Then she played Sister Michelle in Change Of Habit. At the end of the film, Mary's character has to choose between Elvis and the church, and the film leaves it unanswered. The camera bounces back and forth between Elvis and Jesus. Rock music critic Dave Marsh saw lots of deep symbolism in this scene (as Dave tends to do about everything, God love him), and goes on about it in his book, Elvis.
As we all know, Mary changed out of her habit and into a long-running relationship with Mr. Grant. The Mary Tyler Moore Show (1970 - 1977) is still considered one of the best sit-coms ever. It didn't hurt that it featured as its central character a woman trying to make it on her own without a man in her life (and succeeding!). The timing was perfect. But it also didn't hurt that the star was Mary Tyler Moore! She was already identifiable from the earlier show as a woman with a personality all her own, and it was very easy to except "Mary Richards" as a single version of "Laura Petrie". But it was soon clear that it wasn't necessary to depend on that for an audience. MTM had a hit on her hands, and a very influential series, with some classic characters and some very funny moments! The series ended while it was still high in the ratings.
Mary has since pursued many other avenues, including some decent films. In 1980, Mary received an Oscar nomination for her performance in Robert Redford's Ordinary People. The role she played was not at all sympathetic; the audience is rooting for everyone BUT her, it seems! But this only made her performance that much more enjoyable! Not bad for a Brooklyn girl who started out dancing across a stove!

Sadly Mary passed away in January 2017! Here are some of the tributes to this influential star of two iconic TV hits:

Mary Links!

Read Mary's autobiography, After All.

Mary Books!

Some more MTM books worth tracking down!

Mary Photos!

Click to Enlarge

With Dick Van Dyke

from Change Of Habit

from The Mary Tyler Moore Show

Click here for more Mary Tyler Moore photos!

Mary Videos!

Mary Music and Stuff!

Get some soundtrack music at Amazon!

or download songs on iTunes!

Search eBay for some Mary Tyler Moore Stuff!

Shout It Out! Leave Us Your Comments About Mary Tyler Moore!

Comment Form is loading comments...

Main Page Main Menu of Wahinis List of Movies
Video / Music Store Links Contact Greggers