Who are your Felix Unger and Oscar Madison? (Lemmon/Matthau vs. Klugman/Randall)

While I admire and respect Walter Matthau and Jack Lemmon, Oscar and Felix will always, to me, be Jack Klugman and Tony Randall.

How about you?

Two choices only.

No love for Demond Wilson and Ron Glass?
(Speaking of which, I vaguely recall reading somewhere that, when this version was first developed, they wanted Glass to play Oscar.)

How about Matthau and Art Carney (the original Broadway Felix & Oscar)?

But given the two choices, I go for Klugman & Randall; I still have a hard time watching versions where Felix is not an opera buff.

Klugman and Randall. Mainly from Randall being an excellent Felix. Just about anybody besides Matthew Perry could play a decent Oscar.

Klugman and Randall. Actually, I have loved anything Tony Randall was in, even the old “What’s My Line”, in which he was a superb guest panelist.

Oh, Klugman and Randall, no question. They actually seemed to be real friends who could live in the same apartment. In the movie, Matthau and Lemmon were fine as characters, but you never had any idea why or how they were friends. Why would Felix hang out with Oscar, or indeed any of the poker buddies who play a much larger role in the movie than on TV? On TV, they would make an appearance now and then, but really, Murray the cop was the embodiment of them all, so the others disappeared.

Not true. Klugman was superb in portraying Oscar’s frustration and weary resignation and cynicism. Along with the slobbery.


Lemmon/Matthau could be described as “portrayals”, whereas Klugman/Randall would be more “embodiments”.

In my youth, watching *The Odd Couple /I] reruns on TV was sometimes the highlight of my day. Klugman and Randall portrayed male friendship as well as anyone has ever done.

Jack Lemmon is Ensign Pulver. So he can’t be Felix Unger.

Simple repetition, I’ve probably seen the movie 2 maybe 3 times. It is a very good movie but I’ve seen all the shows and most of them 3 or more times. So Klugman & Randall. Also they had those Yatzee commercials long after the show went off.

Klugman/Randall. I THINK I’ve seen the movie, but I’m not sure…the TV series I watched religiously, though.

Child of the 70’s here, so I watched a lot of The Odd Couple, most of it in syndication. I didn’t even know it was based on previous material at the time, so, as they say, you never forget your first.

(Also, I like the 2015 series well enough…Perry’s Oscar is…an adjustment, but Lennon’s a pretty good Felix.)

I was a fan of the TV show long before I got around to seeing the movie, so Randall and Klugman defined the characters for me.

And it’s been a long time since I watched the film, but from what I recall, Lemmon’s Felix was more of an everyman who was forced to put up with Oscar’s slovenliness because he had no other options. He may have been somewhat fastidious, but Randall took it to a whole other level. The movie didn’t seem to have the whole “polar opposites” dynamic that the sitcom perfected.

As a side note, I really wanted to like the Matthew Perry/Thomas Lennon reboot. I thought Lennon was quite good, and the supporting cast was strong, but Perry’s uptight and high-strung take on Oscar was just a big WTF.

The definitive performances were, of course, Frank Nelson and Paul Winchell as Spiffy and Fleabag.

I agree with everyone else that no one could play Felix better than Tony Randall, I’m really torn between Matthau and Klugman.

I’d need to go back and watch the movie again, and not judge Matthau’s performance by the characters he played in later years.

Randall and Klugman, although I think the perfect Oscar is Matthau and the perfect Felix is Randall. But not together, so I stick with Klugman and Randall.

Yep, Randall and Klugman.

Another vote for Randall and Klugman.

Tony Randall is my kind of guy — pic of him and Heather Harlan. If I was 75 years old, I’d want a 25 year old wife wearing a dress like that and looking like her.

Cousin Larry and Balki.

Though I did watch the TV version, it wasn’t a significant part of my TV watching youth, so I think Matthau and Lemmon for me.