The Finch Formerly Known As Gold

26 September 2005

The originator of KAOS theory

Don Adams, aka Maxwell Smart, agent of CONTROL, has been eighty-sixed out of existence.

Adams, who had paid dues on the standup-comedy circuit — I have a copy of his LP The Detective (Roulette 25317), recorded live at one of his shows — became a TV spy in the fall of 1965 at the behest of NBC, which had bought a pilot written by Buck Henry and Mel Brooks. Get Smart, which paired Adams' Agent 86 with the implausibly beautiful Agent 99 (Barbara Feldon), ran for four years.

You've heard his voice elsewhere, of course: in the Sixties Adams provided the voice of Tennessee Tuxedo, a penguin who wasn't quite up to the demands of Linux, and two decades later he got back into the action-hero business as the voice of Inspector Gadget.

Adams suffered a lung infection over the weekend, and died Sunday. He was 82. I'll miss him by about this much.

Posted at 4:19 PM to Almost Yogurt