The Mary Tyler Moore Show

Better Late . . . That's a Pun . . . Than Never

Season 4, Ep 20, Aired 2/2/74
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  • Episode Description
  • To relieve her boredom, Mary jokingly writes a humorous obituary of one of the people in the WJM-TV file. Coincidentally, the same person dies the following day and the obituary is read on the air. Lou has no choice but to suspend Mary, but she threatens to quit in response.

  • Cast & Crew
  • Georgia Engel

    Georgette Franklin Baxter (1973-1977)

  • Mary Tyler Moore

    Mary Richards

  • Ted Knight

    Ted Baxter

  • Gavin MacLeod

    Murray Slaughter

  • Valerie Harper

    Rhoda Morgenstern (1970-1974)

  • Fan Reviews (1)
  • A good episode that explores something interesting for the series, Mary really screwing up.

    By Mac-Ale, Nov 21, 2008

  • Trivia & Quotes
  • Quotes (1)

    • Ted: (reading a joke obituary on the air) And now we come to a sad part of the news; Wee Willie Williams is dead, at 110. For a long time, Wee Willie Williams was the oldest living citizen in Minneapolis. There were other citizens in Minneapolis who were older; however, they happen to be dead. When last interviewed, Wee Willie had no immediate plans for the future, but hoped to include traveling, gardening...and breathing. Wee Willie had two main hobbies, which were whittling, and going down to the bus station and not doing anything. He also enjoyed playing his favorite little game, which he called 'ignoring people'. How it was played was, no matter what anyone would say to him, he would turn his head away, and stare off into space. But look at it this way; now he can play it even better because he doesn't have to worry about blinking. This is Ted Baxter saying good night and good news!

    Notes (3)

    • This episode was filmed on January 11, 1974.

    • Mary: (in serious trouble with Lou Grant) Mr. Grant, I don't want any special treatment. Lou: This is the kind of thing people are fired for. Mary: Mr. Grant, I would appreciate any special treatment.

    • This is the second time in the series that Mary has been stuck writing obituaries. In "Put on a Happy Face" she had accidentally thrown out the obituary file and had to re-do them all.

    Allusions (1)

    • In the tag sequence, Rhoda jokes that Robert Redford's last word would be "Rhoda", and it would be discovered that it was the name of his sled. This is a reference to the classic 1941 Orson Welles film "Citizen Kane", wherein Charles Foster Kane's last word was "Rosebud"--the name of his sled.

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