Mary Tyler Moore Praised as '2nd Great Woman of TV'

She 'was a once-in-a-generation talent'
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 26, 2017 4:09 AM CST
Updated Jan 26, 2017 6:48 AM CST
Mary Tyler Moore Praised as '2nd Great Woman of TV'
Mary Tyler Moore accepts the Life Achievement Award at the 18th Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards in 2002.   (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill, File)

Hollywood has been deeply saddened by the loss of one of television's greatest stars: Mary Tyler Moore, who died Wednesday at the age of 80. Co-stars and fans describe the Dick Van Dyke Show and Mary Tyler Moore Show star as a uniquely gifted woman who blazed a trail for many others in TV comedy. A roundup of appreciations:

  • Robert Lloyd at the Los Angeles Times describes Moore as the "second great woman of television" and the equal of the first one, Lucille Ball. "In cultural impact ... they were peers," he writes, "each presenting and enacting, each in her own way, a picture of a strong woman, eternally optimistic, never to be held down. Each had impeccable timing and a natural command of the television stage."

  • Davis Sims at the Atlantic takes a look back at her career, noting that her "on-screen persona radically changed with the times she lived in and helped set new benchmarks for America's image of the working woman."
  • The Hollywood Reporter has a moving tribute to Moore from Dick Van Dyke, who describes his former co-star as "just the best." "Outside of her family, I don't think there was anyone more proud of her than I was," he says. "Just to watch her grow was such a thrill for me. She left an imprint on television comedy."
  • John Swansburg at Slate looks back at what he considers to be both a "brilliant rumination on death" and the funniest episode of the Mary Tyler Moore Show: the episode where Chuckles the Clown dies. It is "perhaps a dark moment to recall, but I would argue there's no better way to remember her talent," he writes.
  • People recalls one of the darkest episodes of her life: the death of her only child, 24-year-old son Richie, from a self-inflicted gunshot wound in 1980. After the death, which was ruled an accident, Moore personally replied to the thousands of letters of condolence she received.
  • PETA praises Moore for her lifetime dedication to animals, with activism including fur protests, the "Great American Meatout," and helping the group rescue a 65-year-old lobster from a a restaurant. "Rest in peace, Mary. We miss your wit, wisdom, and compassion already."
  • "Mary Tyler Moore was a once-in-a-generation talent," CBS Chairman Leslie Moonves said in a statement, per Variety. "She will be long remembered as a gifted actress, television pioneer, and a role model to so many. CBS has lost one of the very best to ever grace our airwaves and our industry has lost a true legend and friend."
(Read more Mary Tyler Moore stories.)

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