They wanted the show to continue due to the fact that it was still so highly rated. Closer Weekly has affiliate partnerships so we may receive compensation for some links to products and services. See details. I got a call from [producer] Bud Yorkin that on the show they wanted to expand the stories, get them out of the bar where it was usually set and have Archie date women so they could have a greater variety of scripts. More successful was the transition of Roseanne to The Conners. The Stivics stayed with the show for the first eight seasons, Jean Stapleton announcing she would be leaving after the ninth. So I went over his house that evening and he said, ‘Why do you want to do this?’ I told him what Bob said, that it was a question of ratings. Stuck between them is Archie’s “dingbat” (his nickname, not ours) wife Edith (Jean Stapleton) and their daughter, Gloria (Sally Struthers), who’s married to the Meathead and lives in the Bunker household. Edith’s health problems in the final episode of All in the Family are a precursor to her death from a stroke on Archie Bunker’s Place. It would be truly difficult to think of the death of a fictional character (with all due respect to Mr. Lear) that was as moving as this one was, thanks purely to the writing and the performance by Carroll O’Connor. Norman said, ‘That’s all it means? You may click on “Your Choices” below to learn about and use cookie management tools to limit use of cookies when you visit NPR’s sites. She was the wife of Archie Bunker (who often called her a "dingbat"), mother of Gloria Stivic, mother-in-law of Michael "Meathead" Stivic, and, after 1975, grandmother of Joey Stivic. Troops, Melissa Rivers Reflects on Mom Joan's Legacy 6 Years After Her Death, How Goldie Hawn Keeps Herself 'Young' at 75. However, Stapleton is no … In the episode "Too Good Edith," the 209th and final episode of All in the Family, Edith becomes seriously ill while frantically helping Archie cook a large Irish dinner for a St. Patrick's Day party at the bar. Lisa Marie Presley Keeps It Casual While Grocery Shopping in LA, subscribe to our Classic TV & Film Podcast. I think Edith must die.’ ‘No, no, no! But to see how the death of a main character should be done, look no further than dear old Edith Bunker (and look for All in the Family on the getTV network). That last bit was tough to do, but it wasn’t an immediate concern. Jean Stapleton, 90, beloved Edith Bunker on ‘All in the Family,’ dies . Even saddened by the news. Trusted by 20M users and growing - the best local & breaking news source in the US, featuring local weather, alerts, deals, events and more. At least not until that episode’s end (more on that in a moment). They were calling, I guess, to ascertain that I truly wasn’t interested in returning, and whether or not I minded and I told him no. Stephanie was abandoned at the doorstep of the Bunkers' home by her father Floyd Mills, a chronic alcoholic. So that was my decision.”, “Norman didn’t want us to kill Edith,” Carroll pointed out. Edith Baines Bunker is a fictional 1970s sitcom character on All in the Family (and occasionally Archie Bunker's Place), played by Jean Stapleton. By 1975, one-fifth of the entire country was tuning in. Closer Weekly is part of the A360 Media Entertainment Group.Copyright © A360 Media LLC 2020. Except for CBS. Directed by Paul Bogart. Jean Stapleton, best known for playing the dimwitted but devoted Edith Bunker on the 1970s CBS sitcom "All in the Family," died Friday at the age of 90. It didn’t. Then another day or so later, Bob Daly called me up again and asked me to talk to Norman. When Archie finds out the truth about Edith's illness, he takes steps to make sure she will never "forget" to tell him again. To make a long story short, he said that night we could do it. As Dale Sherman, author of MASH FAQ, recently commented to us, “Stevenson hated seeing the character be killed off, but he would later admit that it was the right way to show the audience that war kills indiscriminately. Just doing a show for ratings?’ I said I would do it, and naturally, as I proceed with the show, I’m hopefully going to give myself better reasons to produce it. According to the Chicago Tribune, Stapleton's family announced she had died of natural causes. Jean Stapleton, the stage-trained character actress who played Archie Bunker's far better half, the sweetly naive Edith, in TV's groundbreaking 1970s comedy "All in the Family," has died… He wanted out and the producers weren’t willing to allow him a way back in. Jean Stapleton, known to millions of viewers as … Jean Stapleton actually agreed to appear as Edith in five of the first 14 episodes of Season 1, but ultimately decided that she truly was done with the character. Then ABC decided to go with a retooled version called The Conners, which featured all of the cast members with the exception of Roseanne and which is now in its second season. The show was originally broadcast on the CBS network for nine seasons from January 12, 1971 to April 8, 1979, for a total of 205 episodes. Actress Jean Stapleton, beloved for her role as Edith Bunker on the 1970s television series "All in the Family," died Friday at her home in New York City. It was, of course, only one of numerous TV series to experience such a major cast shake-up, which, over the years, has taken place for a wide variety of reasons. She doesnt want to disappoint her husband but finally it catches up with her and she cant walk. Her appearances on the prior season sharply declined. This information is shared with social media, sponsorship, analytics, and other vendors or service providers. The role earned her three Emmys and two Golden Globes. Her cause of death was a stroke. The doctor chews out Archie and then feels badly that Edith hadnt told him. Jean Stapleton as Edith Bunker Everyone, including series creator Norman Lear, seemed pretty much ready to wrap things up. Reba Mcentire Is All Smiles During Beach Vacation in Barbados! All in the Family ran on CBS from 1971 to 1979, and was a revolutionary show in that it dealt with taboo subjects TV had not dealt with before (the sound of a flushing toilet included). Season 2 picked several months later after the character had died, off camera, of a stroke. I said, ‘Norman, you do realize that she is only fiction, right?’ There was a long pause and I thought, ‘Oh, I’ve hurt this dear man that I love so much.’ And then his voice came back: ‘To me, she isn’t.’ But shortly thereafter, he gave the word and they made Edith die.”. She was 90. Shortly after taking off from the 4077th via helicopter, the doctors, who were in the midst of surgery on wounded soldiers, received word that Henry’s plane had been shot down over the Sea of Japan with no survivors. Brisebois and Melvin remained with the new show and Stapleton appeared in a handful of episodes until Edith dies (off-camera) from a stroke. Well, Norman said on the phone, ‘I just haven’t been able to say yes to this.’ So I brought it down to this. T… That being said, viewers seem to be sticking around. We couldn’t call it All in the Family anymore, we couldn’t use the opening song, and we’d have to keep Edith alive as a character, even though she wasn’t seen.”. Jean Stapleton, best known for her iconic role as Edith Bunker in the 1970s TV series All in the Family, has died, her family tells The Los Angeles Times, TMZ and The Hollywood Reporter. The game centers on the character of Edith, a sole member of the Finch family who return to her family's house in Orcas Island to learn about her family "curse", that causes all but one member of each generation to die in unusual ways.Through the house she encounter a series of memorials to her deceased relatives. Jean Stapleton is one of the most enduring figures in American pop culture through her portrayal of Edith Bunker on All in the Family. And that morning when ya was layin’ there, I was shakin’ you an’ yellin’ at you to go down and fix my breakfast, I didn’t know… Ya had no right to leave me that way, Edith, without givin’ me just one more chance to say I love you…”. All in the Family (1971-79) Stapleton's best known role as Edith in All in the Family began in 1971. Archie's worst nightmare came true in 1980, on the re-titled All in the Family continuation series Archie Bunker's Place, when Edith died (off-camera) of a stroke. More recently, on Kevin Can Wait, when Leah Remini guest starred on the show, it marked a reunion between her and King of Queens co-star Kevin James. You can adjust your cookie choices in those tools at any time. Jean Stapleton, who played Archie Bunker's wife Edith in the TV series "All in the Family," died yesterday (May 31) in New York. NEW YORK (AP) — Jean Stapleton, the stage-trained character actress who played Archie Bunker's far better half, the sweetly naive Edith, in TV's groundbreaking 1970s comedy All in … She was 90. Carroll O’Connor, Jean Stapleton, and Sally Struthers received Emmys in 1972 for “All in the Family.” As Edith Bunker, Ms. Stapleton became a symbol of emerging feminism. He’d been avoiding his bedroom since her passing but was finally convinced by the end that he had to move forward. The death of Jean Stapleton’s Edith Bunker on All in the Family — or, more precisely, its spin-off, Archie Bunker’s Place — remains one of the most profound and moving events involving a television character ever aired (and our subject at hand). The concept pit conservative bigot Archie Bunker (Carroll O’Connor) against his liberal son-in-law, Mike “Meathead” Stivic (future director Rob Reiner), setting the stage for back and forth arguments between them that covered a wide variety of social issues, among them women’s rights, the Vietnam War, homosexuality, rape, religion, menopause, abortion, and so much more. She had been suffering from phlebitis and decided not to tell Archie, but when he finds out about it he scolds her for hiding it from him. “I know I always used to kid ya about you going first; you know I never meant none of that. But Archie was refusing to grieve. So I left Archie Bunker’s Place and was on tour with a play in Florida. They paused for barely a second in acknowledgment before going back to work. And, naturally, the on-air effectiveness of those departures has varied from show to show, depending on the creativity of those involved and the circumstances surrounding their absence. The sad episode about Edith Bunker death is titled Archie Alone. Black Sabbath’s Legendary Breakup Detailed in New Documentary, Jane Seymour Reveals Her Diet and Aging Secrets for Staying Youthful, Richard Thomas Reveals the Secret to His Marriage With Wife Georgiana, Why Reba McEntire Is 'Torn' Over Son Brandon and Kelly Clarkson's Divorce, Jimmy Stewart's Daughter Kelly Recalls Christmas Memories With Late Star, Helen Hunt Is Dating Boyfriend Steven Tepper: 'She's Really Into Him', See Pioneer Woman Ree Drummond's Holiday Dinner Hacks, Marlene Dietrich Was 'Happiest' When Supporting the U.S. The death of Roseanne Conner had been explained away last season as being due to an opioid overdose, which didn’t exactly thrill other cast members, many of the show’s fans and particularly Roseanne herself. Her cousin was Maude Findlay (Beatrice Arthur) who was Archie's nemesis. He was 76 years old. And then Norman called and he said he had been having meetings with CBS about it. Beneath his crusty, irascible exterior, Archie is intensely protective of Edith and becomes upset at the mere thought of losing her. Stephanie was introduced in the All in the Family's ninth-season premiere as the 9-year-old niece of Archie and Edith Bunker (although she was actually the daughter of Edith's step-cousin). -- -- to their curmudgeonly and bigoted Archie Bunker. Not a big deal, until you remember that Kevin’s character was married, so the solution was to bump off the wife. Which is a little odd considering that she died on April 10, but then, that's television for you. Gingerly he picked it up, weighed the significance of it all in his hand, looked heavenward and spoke to his wife in a way we had seldom seen him do before. Oh, sure, we were all startled to hear at the start of Archie Bunker’s Place‘s second season that Edith had died. And then he noticed, sticking out ever so slightly from under the bed, one of Edith’s slippers. “It wasn’t s’posed to be like this, y’know; I was s’posed to be the first one to go,” he said, tears gradually welling up. The finale of All In The Family aired on April 8, 1979 and a sequel series called Archie Bunker’s Place debuted on September 23. If you click “Agree and Continue” below, you acknowledge that your cookie choices in those tools will be respected and that you otherwise agree to the use of cookies on NPR’s sites. BONUS! Actress Jean Stapleton, most famous for playing Edith Bunker in All in the Family, has died, the Los Angeles Times reports. Jean Stapleton had wished to leave her role (in interviews, Stapleton has stated the role of Edith had reached its potential). The audience tuned out in droves, which must have been some form of vindication for actress Erinn Hayes, whose character’s death was handled off camera between seasons. 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