The Television Scripts of Philip Rapp - Philip Rapp
- From the Marx Brothers to Joan Davis
Philip Rapp will remain immortal through his catty creation, The Bickersons, an insanely funny radio vignette that later emerged on TV and stage, and which influenced a generation of Honeymooners-loving viewers. But he was a far more prolific author than that.
In late 1958, he pitched an idea for a series called Deputy Seraph, starring the Marx Brothers, which would wind up being their penultimate appearance on film together. Only a few minutes of their scene was shot, however, along with the photos inside this book, and nothing else. The project was scrapped too quickly once Chico failed to pass the medical physical exam required for insuring its stars during the series. Those few minutes have since wound up on DVD, but this is the first public viewing of their entire divine adventure.
Around the same time, Joan Davis filmed her adventurecomedy pilot of Joan of Arkansas, about a dental assistant who is press-ganged into government service. But the series failed to sell, and this also ended up being the last appearance of that star on film. Squeegee was a pilot written for comedian Ben Blue around 1954 and filmed in April 1955, about the same time that Rapp was trying to sell the residual rights to the 78 Topper episodes he owned (having directed or produced a number of them). It was his Topper hit that helped Rapp get the funding he needed for several of these later pilots, which failed to catch on. Now, read on . !