Bernard Fox, TV’s Dr. Bombay and Col. Crittendon, dead at 89

A family spokesman says that Bernard Fox, known to TV viewers as Dr. Bombay on “Bewitched” and Col. Crittendon on “Hogan’s Heroes,” has died. He was 89.

Spokesman Harlan Boll said the actor died Wednesday of heart failure at a Los Angeles-area hospital.

Bernard Fox as Dr. Bombay on Bewitched

Bernard Fox was a fifth-generation performer; born Bernard Lawson in Port Talbot, Glamorgan, the son of Queenie (née Barrett) and Gerald Lawson, both stage actors. He had an older sister, Mavis, and his uncle was actor Wilfrid Lawson.

Fox began his film career at the age of 18 months and by the age of 14 he was an assistant manager of a theatre. After his naval services in the Royal Navy during World War II he resumed his career and soon was in 30 film credits from 1956 to 2004 include two films revolving around the sinking of RMS Titanic, separated by 39 years. Fox was in both Titanic (1997) (as Colonel Archibald Gracie IV) and the earlier version of the tragedy A Night to Remember (1958) (uncredited as Frederick Fleet). In the latter, he delivered the line “Iceberg dead ahead, sir!” while playing the part of a sailor in the ship’s crow’s nest.

His other screen roles ranged from supporting parts in broad comedies (Yellowbeard, Herbie Goes to Monte Carlo, and The Private Eyes, playing a homicidal butler in the last) to supplying the voice of the Chairmouse in the Disney animated features The Rescuers and The Rescuers Down Under. He played the role of Winston Havelock, a retired Air Force pilot, in the 1999 adventure film The Mummy. In 2004, Fox made his final appearance before retirement in Surge of Power: The Stuff of Heroes.

Bernard Fox as Osgood Rightmire in ABC’s Bewitched Thurday, April 7 1966

On television, Fox portrayed the warlock physician (or “witch doctor”) Dr. Bombay on Bewitched and the inept “Colonel” Crittendon (actually an RAF Group Captain, though always referred to as a Colonel) on Hogan’s Heroes. However, his first appearance in Bewitched was not as Dr. Bombay, but as a professional witch debunker. He repeated the role of Dr. Bombay on the 1977 sequel Tabitha, and again in 1999 on the soap opera Passions, and spoofed it as a genie doctor (“wish doctor”) in a 1989 episode of Pee-wee’s Playhouse.

He appeared in two episodes in the mystery series Columbo, “Dagger of the Mind” and “Troubled Waters”.

Fox was the penultimate surviving adult recurring cast member of the sitcom Bewitched, leaving Nancy Kovack as the only remaining one. Fox also appeared as English valet Malcolm Meriweather on The Andy Griffith Show, and in Knight Rider as Commander Smiths in season 2, episode 8.

Bernard Fov (left) and Werner Kl;emperer on CBS’ Hogan’s Heroes

Fox appeared as a British Major in “The Phantom Major,” episode 3 of F Troop, and in “Tea and Empathy,” episode 17 of season 6 of M*A*S*H. In 1964, Fox appeared in episode 117 of The Dick Van Dyke Show, titled “Girls Will Be Boys.” Fox plays the father of a little girl who keeps beating up Richie Petrie. He also appeared in episode 95, “Teacher’s Petrie,” where he played a night school creative writing teacher, and in “Never Bathe on Saturday” as the house detective.

In 1965 Fox made a guest appearance on Perry Mason as murderer Peter Stange in “The Case of the Laughing Lady.”

Fox also appeared in McHale’s Navy, The Man from U.N.C.L.E. “The Thor Affair” As munitions magnate Brutus Thor, intent on assassinating a “Gandhi-like” figure who is trying to bring world peace (1966). And a two-part episode “The Bridge of Lion’s Affair” in 1966, as THRUSH agent Jordin, whose constant response to each additional assignment is “I’ll look into it”; and in the Murder, She Wrote episode “One White Rose for Death” in 1986. He co-starred with Michael Evans as Dr. Watson in “Sherlock & Me” in the early 1980s.

Fox married his wife, Jacqueline, in 1961. Their only child, a daughter named Amanda, has a son named David-Mitchel and a daughter named Samantha.

Bewitched – The Complete Series (DVD)

TV’s Endearing Enchantress in all 254 Episodes!

Ranked one of the Top 50 Television Shows of All Time!

A young man and a young woman meet, begin dating, fall in love and get married. What more could anyone want or expect? Well, when the young woman is a witch it can make for an interesting and complicated relationship.

Elizabeth Montgomery is Samantha Stevens, a witch who decides to try living a mortal’s life as a suburban housewife to her ad-executive husband Darrin. Dick York portrayed her loving husband for the first five seasons and was replaced by Dick Sargent for the final three of the series. Samantha swears off using witchcraft which doesn’t sit well with her mother Endora (Agnes Moorehead), who sees her son-in-law Derwood as a hindrance.

The Stevens household has one bizarre event happening after another, usually caused by Endora or one of Samantha’s other magically-inclined relatives. Through it all, Darrin and Samantha make the best of everything and get to share their life with their two children, Tabitha and Adam. This top-ranked sitcom was enjoyed by its audience for eight seasons. So sit back, relax and let Samantha’s nose twitches entertain you!

Contents Include These Episodes and MORE:

Season One

I, Darrin, Take This Witch Samantha
Be it Ever So Mortgaged
It Shouldn’t Happen to a Dog
Mother Meet What’s His Name
Help, Help, Don’t Save Me
Little Pitchers Have Big Fears
The Witches Are Out
Witch or Wife
The Girl Reporter
There’s No Witch Like an Old Witch
Open the Door, Witchcraft
Abner Kadabra
George the Warlock
That Was My Wife
Illegal Separation
A Change of Face
Remember the Main
Eat at Mario’s
Cousin Edgar

Season Two

Alias Darrin Stephens
A Very Special Delivery
We’re in for a Bad Spell
My Grandson, the Warlock
The Joker Is a Card
Take Two Aspirins and Half a Pint of Porpoise Milk
Trick or Treat
The Leprechaun
Double Split
What Every Young Man Should Know
The Girl with the Golden Nose

Season Three

Nobody’s Perfect
The Moment Of Truth
Witches & Warlocks Are My Favorite Things
Accidental Twins
HoHo The Clown
Super Car
The Corn Is As High As A Guernsey’s Eye
Nobody But A Frog Knows How To Live
There’s Gold In Them Thar Pills

Season Four

Long Live The Queen
Toys In Babeland
Business, Italian Style
Double, Double…Toil And Trouble
Cheap, Cheap
No Zip In My Zap
Birdies, Bogies And Baxter
Safe And Sane Halloween
Out Of Sync, Out Of Mind
That Was No Chick, That Was My Wife
Allergic To Ancient Macedonian Dodo Birds

Season Five

Samantha’s Wedding Present
Samantha Goes South for a Spell
Samantha on the Keyboard
Instant Courtesy
Samantha’s Supermaid
Cousin Serena Strikes Again (Part 1)
Samantha and Darrin in Mexico City

Season Six

Samantha and the Beanstalk
Samantha’s Yoo Hoo Maid
Samantha’s Caesar Salad
Samantha’s Curious Cravings
The Phrase Is Familiar
Samantha’s Secret Is Discovered
Mona Sammy
Turn on That Old Charm
Make Love, Not Hate

Season Seven

To Go or Not to Go, That Is the Question
Salem, Here We Come
The Salem Saga
Samantha’s Hot Bedwarmer
Darrin on a Pedestal
Paul Revere Rides Again
The Mother-in-Law of the Year
Mary, the Good Fairy
The Good Fairy Strikes Again
The Return of Darrin the Bold

Season Eight

How Not to Lose Your Head to Henry VIII (Part 1)
How Not to Lose Your Head to Henry VIII (Part 2)

Director: Various
Starring: Elizabeth Montgomery, Dick York, Dick Sargent, Agnes Moorehead, David White
Rating: NR (Not Rated)

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