Monday, June 12, 2017

'Moonrs Monday #16: The mystery of Pat Perkins

Each Honeymooners episodes with a litany of names (though, annoyingly, not the guest stars) brought to us by the rolling credits. We see the writers, behind-the-scenes personnel like the immortal Jack Philbin...and Pat Perkins.

Pat Perkins? Actually we don't see Pat Perkins, but we see PAT PERKINS, as in "Daytime dresses by Pat Perkins." Pat Perkins' name is in signature form, making a distinctive enough sight, but it's also HUGE. I mean, Pat Perkins is the John Hancock of sitcom credits.

The signature was so weird and so in your face that it spooked me as a youngster. I always wondered what the deal was with Double P until I acquired The Official Honeymooners Treasury. Since the chapter on "Here Comes the Bride" tells this story, I think I'll cover it here before we move on to one of my all-time favorite episodes (hopefully next week).

If you don't want to have your dreams shattered, leave now, and we'll see you next time for "Mama Loves Mambo."

You see, the sad truth is...there IS no Pat Perkins. There WAS no Pat Perkins. Nor shall there ever BE a Pat--Well, I'm sure there have been some over the years, but they weren't supplying Alice Kramden's dresses.

No, a guy named Mac Kaplan owned Sunnyvale, Inc., which produced the Pat Perkins line. Mac Kaplan. MAC KAPLAN? I can see now why the elegant name was chosen in this case. It still looks kind of creepy, but it's a bit more delicate than MAC KAPLAN coming at you all of a sudden.

The book quotes Mac's son Charles as saying his dad offered Jackie Gleason a deal: For a credit each week, he would provide the dresses gratis (Gratis is the kind of word I imagine Pat Perkins is more likely to say than Mac Kaplan).

Seymour Kaplan, Mac's brother, tells the book's authors, "It sounded like a marvelous fashion setup for an inexpensive garment, because what wouldn't look great on Audrey Meadows. The only thing was, Mac spent the rest of the time trying to get the apron off her."

It sure did work. After all, the credit had a big impact with me. I will say, too, that Mac Kaplan is shown in the book standing with Audrey on his arm, and he looks like a pretty suave dude. So consider this week's post a tribute to Mac Kaplan, even if we are all a little disappointed that "Pat Perkins" isn't a real person.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Just watched another episode on WPIX. Thanks for the info!