Tragedy lingers, we all know -- but comedy seems more ephemeral. Laughs don't often leave a lasting mark. Comedy writers out here in Hollywood struggle with that: all the big prizes and awards go to dramatists, whose works enrich the soul and expound on the human condition. Laughter is just what we use to fill in the gaps between our various anxieties.
But not this past week. If you needed any proof that laughs last, you just had to check out the obituary sections of publications as diverse as The New York Times and Entertainment Weekly. They were filled with the news that David Lloyd had passed on.
Name doesn't ring a bell? No, probably not -- but he is venerated in television for writing arguably the funniest 30 minutes of comedy ever filmed: an episode of "The Mary Tyler Moore Show" about the death of WJM-TV's kiddie show host, Chuckles the Clown.