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Don Adams of 'Get Smart' Dies


Don Adams, best known as bumbling secret agent Maxwell Smart, died Sunday in Los Angeles from a lung infection. He was 82 years old.

LOS ANGELES Sep 26, 2005 - Don Adams, the wry-voiced comedian who starred as the fumbling secret agent Maxwell Smart in the 1960s television spoof of James Bond movies, "Get Smart," has died. He was 82.

Adams died of a lung infection late Sunday at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, his friend and former agent Bruce Tufeld said Monday, adding the actor broke his hip a year ago and had been in ill health since.

As the inept Agent 86 of the super-secret federal agency Control, Adams captured TV viewers with his antics in combatting the evil agents of Kaos. When his explanations failed to convince the villains or his boss, he tried another tack: "Would you believe ... ?" It became a national catchphrase.

Smart was also prone to spilling things on the desk or person of his boss the chief (actor Edward Platt). Smart's apologetic "Sorry about that, chief" also entered the American lexicon. The spy gadgets, which aped those of the Bond movies, were a popular feature, especially the pre-cell-phone telephone in a shoe.

Would you believe ABC (who were first approached about the series) wanted Tom Poston (Newhart) as Maxwell Smart? It's true. You can find that, and other interesting trivia on the series at Would You Belive?


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» Oblogatory Anecdotes linked with Missed Him By That Much! Don Adams Dies.

Comments (18)

how long will it be before ... (Below threshold)

how long will it be before the left figures out that Karl Rove had him killed to distract from Cindy Sheehan being arrested today?

The humor of "Get Smart" wa... (Below threshold)

The humor of "Get Smart" was great, and often politically incorrect in today's terms. For example, I remember an episode involving the Asian criminal "The Claw". A guy who had a lobster claw for a hand. However, the character used to pronounce his name "Craw", you know, no "el" sounds in Asia. So when Max and 99 find "The Claw" in his hideout, Max yells, "look 99, it the Craw". To which "The Claw" responnds, "not Craw...CRAW!". Hilarious. And the kind of humor you won't find on TV today. That's because sexual innuendo is so much more funny and witty...not!!!

Of course, who can forget t... (Below threshold)

Of course, who can forget the "Cone of Silence".

This sucks. I loved that sh... (Below threshold)

This sucks. I loved that show.

You associated Tom Poston w... (Below threshold)

You associated Tom Poston with the Newhart shows, but he goes all the way back to the Steve Allen shows, too.

Two of the best episode's h... (Below threshold)

Two of the best episode's had Don Rickles as a guest star.

Does anyone remember the show "Don Adams screen test"? They took amatuer actor's and had them recreate scenes from famous movies.

If you substitute "Daily Ko... (Below threshold)

If you substitute "Daily Kos" for "Kaos", everything starts making sense.

I remember the Craw episode... (Below threshold)

I remember the Craw episode well. I sometimes have to stop myself quoting it.

Poston as Agent 86 would have been more like Leslie Nielsen in Police Squad!/Naked Gun.

"Missed it by that much!"</... (Below threshold)
Sheik Yur Bouty:

"Missed it by that much!"

RIP, Don

Is this the White House? Ye... (Below threshold)

Is this the White House? Yes, Karl, operation Mother Sheenan is completed. Agent 99 has fully infiltrated the DU. Kos and the rest have no clue we now have an insider into their throngs. Me? I'm going under the Cone of Silence! Agent Smart signing off!

Too bad he didn't live to b... (Below threshold)

Too bad he didn't live to be 86.

Sorry about that cheif and ... (Below threshold)
spurwing plover:


Damnation, another favorite... (Below threshold)

Damnation, another favorite actor from a fave childhood TV show is gone.

Loved Get Smart ... especially when he started driving the hot red Mustang.

rick 13

I remember those Rickles episodes. Don and Don were the best of friends. I remember when they both were guests on Johnny Carson (crap, I miss him, too) and they were talking about the episodes and showing outtakes. There was a scene where their arms are shackled above their heads. Rickles and Adams kept breaking each other up so much, causing so many retakes, both of them lost feeling in their arms.

Peace be with you, agent 86. You'll be missed.

Little known fastoid about ... (Below threshold)

Little known fastoid about Mr. Admas. In WW2, at the age of 16 he lied to enlist in the Marine Corps and served on Guadalcanal....nearly dieing of blakwater fever in the process.

Thanks for the laughs Mr Adams....and Semper Fi.

Did you ever count the numb... (Below threshold)
spurwing plover:

Did you ever count the number of doors he pasted through? and then there agent 99 and the cheif and the robot heimi and the dog fang and KAOS agent ZIGFREID and the episode where KAOS makes man from a ape and when he falls off the building he gave out the TARZAN yell

Great send ups of gov't bur... (Below threshold)

Great send ups of gov't bureaucracy. In one episode in the middle of a gunfight he stops shooting and the chief asks him why. Max tells him because of the cutbacks they have to pay for their own bullets now.

Sure loved "Get Smart." It... (Below threshold)
Lady Di:

Sure loved "Get Smart." It was funny, pithy, and sweet. Do miss such shows. So much of today's "comedies" are nasty and they leave a bitter aftertaste.
Semper Fi Mr. Adams.

Sure loved "Get Smart." It... (Below threshold)
Lady Di:

Sure loved "Get Smart." It was funny, pithy, and sweet. Do miss such shows. So much of today's "comedies" are nasty and they leave a bitter aftertaste.
Semper Fi Mr. Adams. I do believe that today the angels in heaven are laughing their wings off.






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