Television actor Gavin MacLeod of “The Love Boat” and “The Mary Tyler Moore Show” has died. He was 90.
LOS ANGELES — MacLeod died early Saturday, his nephew, Mark See, told Variety. MacLeod’s health had been poor recently but no cause of death was given, the trade publication reported.
MacLeod achieved stardom as Murray Slaughter, the sardonic TV news writer on the 1970s comedy “The Mary Tyler Moore Show.”
He went to a lead role, and bigger fame, as the cheerful Capt. Stubing on “The Love Boat.” Early in his career, he was featured on “McHale’s Navy” from 1962 to 1964 as seaman Joseph “Happy” Haines.
His movies credits included “Kelly’s Heroes,” “The Sand Pebbles,” “The Sword of Ali Baba,” “War Hunt” and “The Crime Busters.” Among his more recent TV credits were “Touched By An Angel,” “JAG” and “The King of Queens.”
Gavin MacLeod had the great fortune to roll right from one hit show to another in 1977, when “Moore” ended and ABC’s “The Love Boat” began. The hourlong romantic comedy set on a cruise ship ran for 10 years. The actor’s Captain Stubing was known for his signature salute. Even after the end of the voyage in 1987, the actor returned for telepic “The Love Boat: A Valentine Voyage” in 1990 and for the “Reunion” episode of rebooted series “Love Boat: The Next Wave” in 1998.
MacLeod may, indeed, hold a record for consecutive long-running series: He went straight from “The Mary Tyler Moore Show” (168 episodes) to “The Love Boat” (249 episodes).
The New York Times said in 2010: “Perhaps no actor has embraced a signature role the way Mr. MacLeod has with Captain Stubing. Since ‘The Love Boat’ went off the air, he has been a spokesman for Princess Cruises.”
In 1997, the actor joined the rest of “The Love Boat” cast on “Oprah” in what was the first full cast appearance since the show was cancelled. Another cast reunion occurred in 2013 on “The Talk.”