PDA

View Full Version : Goodbye Mr Wizard


MacNut
Jun 12, 2007, 10:30 PM
Don Herbert, who as television's "Mr. Wizard" introduced generations of young viewers to the joys of science, died Tuesday. He was 89.

Herbert, who had bone cancer, died at his suburban Bell Canyon home, said his son-in-law, Tom Nikosey.

"He really taught kids how to use the thinking skills of a scientist," said former colleague Steve Jacobs. He worked with Herbert on a 1980s show that echoed the original 1950s "Watch Mr. Wizard" series, which became a fond baby boomer memory.

In "Watch Mr. Wizard," which was produced from 1951 to 1964 and received a Peabody Award in 1954, Herbert turned TV into an entertaining classroom. On a simple, workshop-like set, he demonstrated experiments using household items.

"He modeled how to predict and measure and analyze. ... The show today might seem slow but it was in-depth and forced you to think along," Jacobs said. "You were learning about the forces of nature."

Herbert encouraged children to duplicate experiments at home, said Jacobs, who recounted serving as a behind-the-scenes "science sidekick" to Herbert on the '80s "Mr. Wizard's World" that aired on the Nickelodeon channel.

When Jacobs would reach for beakers and flasks, Herbert would remind him that science didn't require special tools.

"'You could use a mayonnaise jar for that,"' Jacobs recalled being chided by Herbert. "He tried to bust the image of scientists and that science wasn't just for special people and places."

Herbert's place in TV history was acknowledged by later stars. When "Late Night with David Letterman" debuted in 1982, Herbert was among the first-night guests.

Born in Waconia, Minn., Herbert was a 1940 graduate of LaCrosse State Teachers College and served as a U.S. Army Air Corps pilot during World War II. He worked as an actor, model and radio writer before starting "Watch Mr. Wizard" in Chicago on NBC.

The show moved to New York after several years.

He is survived by six children and stepchildren and by his second wife, Norma, his son-in-law said. A private funeral service was planned.

dmw007
Jun 12, 2007, 10:55 PM
Sad to see such special people leave. At least he left a powerful legacy. :)

MacNut
Jun 12, 2007, 10:58 PM
I would always start my day watching Mr Wizard before school.:)

joepunk
Jun 12, 2007, 11:29 PM
To start my school morning off I would watch the Mr. Wizard show on the Nick channel.

The show and the guy will have a special place in my heart.

sniff

solvs
Jun 13, 2007, 01:21 AM
Mr. Rogers on PBS and Mr. Wizard on Nickelodeon. They just don't make them like that anymore do they. He will be missed. :( Hopefully Nick reruns him the way PBS has been doing for Rogers.

Sdashiki
Jun 13, 2007, 08:18 AM
Dammit.

You rocked Mr. Wizard.

76467

Tanglewood
Jun 13, 2007, 11:03 AM
My dad would always wake me up to watch his show when it came on at 6 am. I learned a lot from watching and had a lot of fun recreating some of his experiments from the show and from his book.

http://ec1.images-amazon.com/images/I/51R3DRRWCTL._AA240_.jpg (http://www.amazon.com/Mr-Wizards-Supermarket-Science-Herbert/dp/0394838009/ref=pd_bbs_sr_1/002-5078715-8809663?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1181750333&sr=8-1)

Sdashiki
Jun 13, 2007, 12:12 PM
My dad would always wake me up to watch his show when it came on at 6 am. I learned a lot from watching and had a lot of fun recreating some of his experiments from the show and from his book.

http://ec1.images-amazon.com/images/I/51R3DRRWCTL._AA240_.jpg (http://www.amazon.com/Mr-Wizards-Supermarket-Science-Herbert/dp/0394838009/ref=pd_bbs_sr_1/002-5078715-8809663?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1181750333&sr=8-1)

I so had that book! Matter of fact, I think its at my mom's house in a bookshelf still.

gkarris
Jun 13, 2007, 12:31 PM
I cried, almost...

Buying the DVDs should help...

http://www.mrwizardstudios.com/

Kamera RAWr
Jun 13, 2007, 02:15 PM
He'll be missed. I also used to watch his show before school :) He made science interesting and fun. Still remember some of his experiements. RIP

itcheroni
Jun 13, 2007, 03:00 PM
Wow, I can't believe how sad this news made me. Part of it is, I guess, due to the fact that there's not much nowadays, that I'm aware of, I would consider on par for that important niche of entertainment.

Toppa G's
Jun 13, 2007, 09:14 PM
Born in Waconia, Minn., Herbert was a 1940 graduate of LaCrosse State Teachers College...

As a resident of Mr. Wizard's hometown, viewer of the newer TV show, and reader/experimenter with the Supermarket Science book, I was sad to learn of his passing yesterday. He is one of the few famous people to come from this little town, and certainly made a positive impact during his life.