It is with a sad heart all CORVETTE lovers and owners mourn the passing of an iconic Hollywood actor, Martin Milner.
Martin Milner played Tod Stiles with sidekick George Maharis (left) as Buz Murdock.
The iconic “Route 66″ TV show was ostensibly about two young men and their adventures traveling across America, exploring social issues of the era. Few people know that the original CORVETTE they used for the show had WIRE WHEELS. In one episode they were forced to sell the wheels for money needed and the WIRE WHEELS never again appeared.
But to Corvette enthusiasts, the show was much more than that – a prime vehicle to see their favorite car on a weekly basis. Sadly, one of the stars of the show – Martin Milner – passed away Sunday at his home in Carlsbad, Calif., at the age of 83.
In “Route 66,” Milner played Yale dropout Tod Stiles with sidekick George Maharis as streetsmart New Yorker Buz Murdock. They traveled across the United States in a series of Corvette convertibles, becoming entwined with the problems of the people they met.
The show was shot on location, with weather determining where filming took place.
“We’d start late in the summer in the north, say in Cleveland, or in New England,” recalled Milner. “Then we’d go south as the winter came, so we’d be warmer.”
Despite the show’s success, Milner later downplayed his status as a star.
“I was never a celebrity,” he told People magazine in 1995, “just a working actor.”
Indeed, a TV Guide story in 1963 noted that Maharis was by far the most popular actor on the show, at least based on letters from fans. Maharis received about 5,000 letters a week, while Milner averaged around 1,800.
However, series co-creator Sterling Silliphant said that while teens were crazy about Maharis, “he bores their parents stiff. He’s too primitive. The adults like Marty because he’s a gentleman. They only tolerate George because Marty seems to like him.”
In the end, it was the wholesome Milner, not the sexy Maharis, who made it all the way until the show ended in 1964. Maharis left briefly to battle infectious hepatitis, then left for good, complaining that the producers worked him too much after he returned and caused a relapse.
“Maharis and I got along fine – until I found out he didn’t like me,” Milner said in an interview with TV Guide.
Milner got a new traveling buddy in 1963 when Glenn Corbett showed up as a returning Vietnam War veteran named Linc Case.
Milner had become close with “Dragnet” star Jack Webb in the 1950s, and that relationship resulted in Webb offering Milner a new “buddy role” as Officer Pete Malloy opposite Kent McCord’s Officer Jim Reed in “Adam-12,” a popular police drama which ran from 1968 to 1975 and focused on the two men’s daily activities as LAPD officers.
If you enjoy watching reruns of the popular 1960s TV classic Route 66 and have longed for a remake featuring the fabulous C7 edition of the Corvette, then you’re going to love the news that EW.com is reporting.
That website says a remake of the original series that featured Martin Milner and George Maharis driving their C2 and C3 Corvettes around the country is in the works.
Apparently, Slingshot Globia Media is developing an updated version of the show under the direction of executive producer Kirk Hallam.
We wouldn’t get our hopes up to see the new show anytime soon, though, as EW goes on to say that producers are searching for a writer for the project now. That means it could be a while before you would actually be able to watch a C7 Corvette going down the road with the stars behind the wheel, traveling across America’s heartland tackling problems that Americans from all walks of life face.
Since it’s been about half a century since the original series aired (for 116 episodes), those struggles of everyday folks will likely have changed some, though there are still bound to be some of the same age-old problems that Americans have faced for eons.
Let’s hope this is one project that gets here as fast as a 2015 Corvette Z06!
The following video embodies what the
is all about. Loving our cars and taking care of our fellow man. Before you go any further, please take a moment to watch this:
In September 2014 our club, THE VILLAGE VETTES CORVETTE CLUB, was the recipient of the FIRST PLACE AWARD for our BANNER displayed at the NATIONAL CORVETTE MUSEUM in Bowling Green, KY. Our banner will proudly fly for one year at the entrance to the museum for all CORVETTE visitors to see. This was presented to the club’s NCM AMBASSADOR, Bill Clements, at the Sept 2014 20TH ANNIV. NATIONAL CORVETTE MUSEUM CARAVAN which many of our members participated in. My thanks to my son, Kevin, for his continued support in teaching me website design and graphics “that make sense”.
We’re were hoping for a “WE’RE #1 REPEAT” with our submission for 2015 shown below but the “NCM Banner Gods” were not smiling for us. We did, however, capture the 3rd place award which, considering the size and median age of our club members is pretty darn good. This simply motivates Kevin & I to come up with one for 2017 that absolutely blows away the competition.
We have a very, very active club, enjoying the camaraderie of our fellow members and our cars with many, many cruises, shows, etc. on our agenda. Please visit our EVENTS & CRUISE SUMMARY page for details and links to our upcoming cruises. If, after perusing our entire website you feel an unrelenting urge to join our club, please click here for a NEW MEMBER APPLICATION. Our club is open to all VILLAGE residents who own CORVETTES. Thank you and enjoy our site and the rest of your day.
“THE CORVETTE SONG”