What's My Line? Forums

CBS (ended 1967)

Bigger Than a Breadbox

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    agent_0042

    [1]Feb 13, 2007
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    I was looking at Steve Allen's page on Wikipedia and I noticed that it lists that he wrote a book titled Bigger than a Breadbox. Anyone here know anything about this book?
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    jimarnone

    [2]Feb 14, 2007
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    Published in 1967, "Bigger Than A Breadbox" offers some insight into Steve Allen's early career and contains many quotes, copies of letters and even transcripts of addresses and radio programs. A running commentary by Leonard Feather glues all of this together and twelve of Steve Allen's cartoon ideas are illustrated by Rowland Wilson. If you are a Steve Allen fan, it is worth a trip to a local library to check out a copy.

    Unfortunately, in spite of the title, there is nothing much on his "What's My Line?" appearances in the book save for a few fleeting references.
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    TVGord

    [3]Feb 14, 2007
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    Despite the dearth of WML references in this book, how cool is it that SA coined a phrase that people still use today (even though they don't know its origins)?  Steve has had many accomplishments in his life, but this is the one that may endure long after we are all gone!  (I saw this, having heard people younger than I using the phrase!  :-)
    Edited on 02/14/2007 10:57pm
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  • Avatar of agent_0042

    agent_0042

    [4]Feb 15, 2007
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    I just checked, and my local library system does not carry it. So I'm going to have go onto the MORE system, see if I can get it on an interlibrary loan. That's how I got the Gil Fates book a while back.
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    agent_0042

    [5]Mar 23, 2007
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    I finally got the book. jim --- you were right that there wasn't much about What's My Line?, but there was a few nice bits of info which I sent off to the guide. Offhand, I believe it was Episode 153. Anyway, nice book, definitely amusing.
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    astorino

    [6]Mar 24, 2007
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    In the book, did Steve Allen discuss his role in the 1955 movie "The Benny Goodman Story" in which he portrayed bandleader Benny Goodman?

    It was aired in March 2007 on TCM (Turner Classic Movies). It was an enjoyable movie, although the "trivia section" at IMDb states it is filled with inaccuracies, which is often true of biopics.

    Benny's wife Alice was played by Donna Reed.

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    agent_0042

    [7]Mar 24, 2007
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    If he has, I haven't seen it yet. I'm a little more than halfway through it and don't recall seeing anything about that. If I do spot anything about it, though, I will make sure to post it here.

    P.S.: The note is now up and the episode was actually Episode #137.

    Edit --- There is a brief mention of that film on Page 126. It really doesn't say much about it, it only indicates that at the time, Allen was doing not only Tonight but also "a full comedy hour Sunday nights at eight o'clock opposite Ed Sullivan." He managed to squeeze in this film, but the schedule was really getting to him and so it was only a few months later that he ended up "quitting Tonight entirely."

    Oh, I should mention that although it is only Steve Allen that is credited for the book, "with a commentary by Leonard Feather" (the opening chapter), a lot of it seems to be written in a third-person style.
    Edited on 03/24/2007 8:06pm
    Edited 3 total times.
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