Gene was mentioned before. He was a "who's almost who"
We also posted a Bat Masterson comic
his obituary from today's nytimes
Gene Barry, Actor of TV, Film and Stage, Dies at 90
By MICHAEL POLLAK
Gene Barry, who portrayed debonair lawmen on television but whose career of more than 60 years ranged from song and dance on Broadway to science fiction, died Wednesday in Woodland Hills, Calif. He was 90 and lived in Beverly Hills until about a year ago.
His death, at an assisted-living facility, was confirmed by his daughter, Elizabeth.
As the dapper star of “Bat Masterson” from 1958 to 1961, Mr. Barry sported a derby hat, gilt-tipped cane and spangled vest in the days, as the theme song said, “when the West was very young.” (The real Bat, whose full name was William Barclay Masterson, was a gambler, gunslinger and marshal who spent his later years as a New York newspaperman and died in 1921.)
In “Burke’s Law” (1963-66), Mr. Barry played the equally insouciant Los Angeles police captain, Amos Burke, an independently wealthy crime fighter with a mansion, a chauffeur-driven Rolls-Royce and a stream of beautiful women. In its third and final season, Burke changed professions and the show was renamed “Amos Burke, Secret Agent.” A generation later, in the 1994-95 season, Mr. Barry reprised the role, this time as chief of detectives.
Mr. Barry starred as a magazine tycoon in “The Name of the Game” (1968-71), in which he rotated starring roles with Anthony Franciosa and Robert Stack. He also starred as a wealthy movie celebrity and secret government agent in “The Adventurer” in 1972-73.
He won a Tony nomination in 1984 for his performance as Georges, the less flamboyant half of a gay couple, in “La Cage Aux Folles,” the first Broadway musical in which the principal lovers were gay men. Mr. Barry “proves a most sensitive foil — far more sensitive than you’d ever guess from his starring roles on such television series as ‘Bat Masterson’ and ‘The Name of the Game,’ ” Frank Rich wrote in The New York Times, adding that Mr. Barry sang his love songs “with tender directness.”
Mr. Barry said at the time, “I’m not playing a homosexual — I’m playing a person who cares deeply about another person.”
In 1999, the 78-year-old Mr. Barry combined musical comedy with show business reminiscences in the Oak Room at the Algonquin Hotel in Manhattan, in a show that included among other things a Maurice Chevalier impersonation. He had made his nightclub debut in the Latin Quarter in 1962.
Gene Barry was born Eugene Klass on June 14, 1919, in New York to Martin Klass, a jeweler, and Eva Klass. He was attending New Utrecht High School in Brooklyn when he won a singing contest and a scholarship to the Chatham Square School of Music. While studying there, he began singing on the New York radio station WHN.
He soon went from the Catskills to Manhattan bistros to Broadway productions, making his debut in the labor musical “Pins and Needles.” He also performed in a series of operettas at Carnegie Hall and in Broadway productions of “Rosalinda,” “The Merry Widow” and “The Would-Be Gentleman.”
The impresario Mike Todd hired him to play opposite Mae West in “Catherine Was Great” (1944). Mr. Barry met his wife, Betty, who acted under the name Julie Carson, during rehearsals.
He left “Catherine” for the musical “Glad to See You” and then moved on to straight acting roles, winning a Critic’s Circle Award for his leading role in an Equity Library production of “Idiot’s Delight.”
Mr. Barry signed a Hollywood contract in 1951. Two years later he starred in perhaps his most famous movie role, the scientist Dr. Clayton Forrester, in the George Pal production of “War of the Worlds,” based on the H. G. Wells novel. He also had a role in 2005 as Tom Cruise’s ex-father-in-law in the Steven Spielberg remake. His more than 20 movies also included “Soldier of Fortune” (1955), with Clark Gable and Susan Hayward, and “Thunder Road” (1958), with Robert Mitchum.
From the 1950s through the 1980s, Mr. Barry appeared in scores of television specials and series, including “Playhouse 90,” “General Electric Theater,” “The Twilight Zone,” “Fantasy Island,” “The Love Boat,” “Charlie’s Angels” and “Murder, She Wrote.”
His wife of 58 years died in 2003. Besides his daughter, Elizabeth, of Los Angeles, he is survived by two sons, Michael L. and Frederick J., both of Topanga, Calif., three grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.
In an interview with Nan Jarrett for an Internet fan site in 2000, Mr. Barry recalled that he was appearing in the final season of the television comedy “Our Miss Brooks” when a producer asked him to play Bat Masterson.
“The idea of playing a saddle-type cowboy was repulsive to me,” he said. “Then he told me about the derby hat and cane, and I went by the costume department and saw the outfit that Masterson would wear, and I couldn’t resist.”