The Odd Couple

Definition

Theater

  • A comedy by Neil Simon, first performed in 1966 inNew York and subsequently at the Queen's Theatre, London. The play,which was later made into a well-known film (1968) starring Jack Lemmonand Walter Matthau, also spawned a highly successful US televisionseries. In 1985 it was revised by Simon for a female cast.

    The story concerns two men sharing a Manhattan apartment.Oscar Madison, an unkempt sportswriter who is behind on his alimony,invites his friend Felix Ungar, who has just divorced, to move in.The meticulous Felix devastates Oscar by cleaning up the apartment,arranging Oscar's junk into neat piles, drawing up schedules for theweek's meals, and insisting that they stick to a budget. When twoEnglishwomen visit and take to the refined Felix, this is the laststraw; Oscar throws his friend out and returns to his poker gamesand slovenly habits. However, he discovers that he can now pay hisalimony thanks to Felix's economic reforms.

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