Actress Brett Somers Is Dead at 83

Obituaries   Actress Brett Somers Is Dead at 83
Brett Somers, the salty television and stage actress who is best remembered as a tart-tongued panelist on the game show "The Match Game" in the 1970s, died Sept. 15 according to her personal web site. She was 83.

Ms. Somers, Charles Nelson Reilly and Richard Dawson were the mainstays on "The Match Game," on which contestants were asked to fill in the blank at the end of some bawdy sentences, and hope that their guesses matched those of the panelists. Ms. Somers was the only woman to hold a steady seat on the panel, but, with her hearty laugh and "one of the boys" manner, she fit right in. Ms. Somers was also well known for her recurring role as Jack Klugman's ex-wife Blanche on the television series "The Odd Couple." The two actors married in real life 1953 and had two children. It was Klugman who suggested to the producers of "The Match Game" that they use her on the show. They separated in 1974. She had a third child, a daughter, by an earlier marriage.

Ms. Somers had a single Broadway credit, 1958's Maybe Tuesday, which ran all of five performances. In 2003, she performed a cabaret act in New York in which she looked back at her career. Other theatre credits included Happy Ending, The Seven Year Itch, and The Country Girl. Her television credits were extensive, and included "The Mary Tyler Moore Show," "Have Gun—Will Travel," "The Defenders," "Ben Casey" and "Barney Miller."

She was born Audrey Sommers July 11, 1924, in New Brunswick, Canada, and raised near Portland, ME.

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