Mary Tyler Moore revealed that this episode of ''The Dick Van Dyke Show'' changed her career
Before this episode, nobody thought that Mary Tyler Moore could be funny.
We all have moments in our lives that seem to change us beyond recognition, even if it's only noticeable to ourselves. Sometimes when something notable happens, Your life shifts into categories of "Before" and "After" with nothing separating the two beyond a seemingly inconsequential moment where your life was forever altered.
A lot of people are only afforded a handful of these moments in their lifetime. Mary Tyler Moore was given many throughout her long and storied life. This makes sense when you consider the amount of lives she was able to change during her career, as well as her meteoric rise to fame on The Dick Van Dyke Show.
While Moore does consider her casting on The Dick Van Dyke Show to be a wonderful event, there was one specific episode of the series that she was quick to proclaim had changed the trajectory of her career.
In her memoir, After All, Moore explained, "It was an early episode in which Laura bleaches her hair blond because she thinks that Rob isn't excited by her anymore." You might remember the season one episode, "My Blonde-Haired Brunette," and a particularly humorous scene in which Laura, after a hair-dye mishap, cries to Rob with half of her hair brown and half dyed blonde.
Moore wrote, "It's powerful helping someone else get a laugh, standing next to him or her, helping to fill the time as you wait for the laugh to almost, but not completely, subside before speaking again. And then, knowing the audience is with you, you construct the foundation for the next one."
Early on in The Dick Van Dyke Show, the expectation was for someone like Van Dyke and others to provide the laughs, but few had faith that Laura Petrie could be a funny character. Moore was aware of these standards, and wrote, "No one expected the role of Laura Petrie to be more than a cute straight man for Dick Van Dyke's genius."
After that point, the writers began giving Laura Petrie more funny moments, beginning Moore's journey as a comedic heavyweight who, no doubt, earned every laugh she got.