Friday, March 26, 2010

Bill Cosby & Rolex Say Goodbye To Robert Culp...


Bill Cosby & Rolex Say Goodbye To Robert Culp

Robert Culp who costarred on I Spy with Bill Cosby now belongs to the ages. Robert Culp was 79 years old and died unexpectedly this week after falling near his Hollywood Hills home.

Robert Culp and Bill Cosby not only co-starred on I Spy, but were great friends for the rest of their lives and the L.A. Times wrote a great article which covered an interview with Bill Cosby about his relationship with Robert Culp. The article mentioned Bill Cosby was shocked to hear of his pals death and spoke very warmly about their close friendship that went far beyond their on-screen partnership.

I Spy ran on TV for three seasons from 1965 to 1968 and both Robert Culp's character Kelly Robinson and Bill Cosby's character Alexander Scott but wore Pepsi GMT-Master watches on the show.

To the best of my knowledge, the only character on a TV show before them that wore a Rolex was Lloyd Bridges on SEA-HUNT.

I Spy was groundbreaking in the world of TV as it was the first have an African American actor in a lead role.


If you have been reading Jake's Rolex World for a long time, you know we used to have I Spy Saturday as a feature where I started with the first episode of I Spy and each Saturday we would watch an episode on order and I would do screen grabs of Robert Kulp and Bill Cosby sporing their trademark Pepsi Rolex GMT-Master watches.

I stopped I Spy Saturday because I did not have time to do all the historic research for Jake's Rolex World and do I Spy Saturday, but as soon as I get the chance I will bring back Flipper Friday, I Spy Saturday and Miami Vice Monday.


Of course, my goal is to document every screen shot from I Spy that had a Rolex GMT and I left off on Season 1, Episode 15, but here are some really cool shots. One of my favorite things from watching I Spy is how elegant and stylish Robert Culp and Bill Cosby were–very much like Steve McQueen from the same era!!!


I decided I would republish I Spy Saturday from Season 1, Episode 2 which was a gold mine of cool Rolex shots:

I Spy Saturday
Season 1 [Episode 2 : A Cup of Kindness]
Original Air Date: September 22, 1965

Welcome to the second I Spy Saturday on Jake's Rolex Watch Blog. Well it looks like we hit the jackpot in episode 2!!!! There is a tremendous amount of Rolex GMT Master exposure. So the way this works is I watch the episode first, do screen grabs of all the cool Rolex shots and then you can watch the episode if you like.


I was kind of shocked because in this episode we see 3 distinct timecheck wrist shots and they are all pretty clear. They almost appear to be a Rolex commercial, which is much better than the opposite–meaning, a fruitless search. The first two wrist shots are of Kelly's (Robert Culp) wrist and there is another one of Scotty's (Bill Cosby) later in this story.


It dawned on me yesterday when I was watching Flipper that the reason both Bill Cosby and Robert Culp's characters wear GMTs is because they are international travelers and since the GMT Master can keep track in two different time zones they must be keeping time in Hong Kong, where this episode is shot, as well as Pentagon time in Washington D.C.


There are two seemingly similar wrist shots above of Robert Culp's GMT because he looks at it in two completely different scenes.

I added this shot below because we can see that Robert Culp is wearing Vans slip-on style shoes which are really stylish today.


I think the fashion from I Spy was really cool. We see Bill Cosby wearing a high, mock T-Shirt like Tiger Woods always wears today–which is a really cool, mod look. We also see Kelly wearing a La Coste (Alligator shirt, not shown) as well as an ascot, and Scotty also wears a high-button-placement three piece suit. All great style if you ask me.


In this next shot we see Bill Cosby under the bed wearing his GMT Master.


In the next three photos we see wrist shots of Bill Cosby wearing his GMT Master.



In this last photo we see a close up screen shot of Bill Cosby's wrist sporting his GMT Master. I believe that Bill Cosby and Robert Culp's GMT Master models are identical and I think they are both wearing Rolex GMT Master [Reference 1675]. If I am wrong about the reference, please correct me.


If you want to watch this episode full screen on you computer screen hit the play button and one I Spy starts playing click the button in the upper right hand corner of the video window to make it go full screen. Enjoy!!!




Rest In Peace Robert Culp. You were one cool, funny, inspiring, charismatic, actor!!!


3 comments:

tomvox1 said...

Very special 1675 GMTs indeed: early pointed crown guards/inner minute track gilt dial/lume exclamation point below the "6" bar/mini 24-hour hand models, ca. 1961-63 only in this configuration.
Cool shots!
Best,
T.

Jake Ehrlich said...

Hi Tom!!!

I noticed the exclamation point on the 6 marker, but I had never seen it before. Also, I noticed the pointed crown-guard, which kind of looks like a bird beak.

It is interesting to note that Cosby and Kulp's GMTs seem to be identical.

Thanks for sharing!!!

Jake

Bertram Moshier said...

First, thank you for the photo showing the sip-on sneakers worn by Kelly Robinson / Robert Culp. I'm just not sure they're by Vans. I'd love to know why you think he's wearing Vans. Why? I'll learn more stuff about sneakers, I Spy, etc.

As for why I'm thinking he's not wearing Vans: The Vans company started on March 16, 1966 and "I Spy" started on September 15, 1965 and ran through April 15, 1968.

I'm not sure the production date of the episode associated with this still, so Vans company might have been producing their canvas white slip-on sneakers at the time of filming. As I understand the history of Vans, it didn't really catch on outside the skating and surfing community till after 1968. Between 1966 and '68 they were a local sneaker company to Anaheim, CA.

Thus the logo we see on the heel of the slip-on sneaker might not be Vans. I can think of three other possibilities: Men's Keds, Sperry (Top Sider), and PF Flyers. I know all three existed before 1965. Of course in the end we might discover they are Vans or yet another company.

Honestly, I can't tell from this photo the manufacturer. The logo isn't clear enough and the other characteristics aren't enough for me to make a determination.

I would really like to know more about these sneakers. If you're willing to invest some time working together, I'd be willing to do so with you. Regardless of your decision, would you happen to have other photos of his sneakers having a better angle of the logo. the out sole, insole, or etc?

Again thank you for including this photo and this interesting topic of Rolex watches and Robert Culp.

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