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Here's Why Henry Winkler is a Better Human Being than Scott Baio

By Dustin Rowles | Trade News | October 18, 2012 | Comments ()


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We haven't mentioned it here yet, but in case you didn't know, Erin Moran -- who played Joanie Cunningham in both "Happy Days" the spin-off, "Joanie Loves Chachi" -- is not living the best life these days. She lives in a trailer home with her husband, ostensibly to take care of her ailing mother-in-law, but more likely because her home was foreclosed on in 2010. I don't know how much you can tell about a person's situation by a picture, but if a picture tells a thousand words, this one here would say: Damn! 1,000 times.

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This before and after photo isn't doing her many favors, either.

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Anyway, clearly Ms. Moran is down on her luck. Now, if you were a former cast member of hers in a position to help, what would you do? If you're Scott Baio, stalwart Republican with a new show on Nick at Nite, and someone asked you about Moran's situation, this is how you'd respond:

To be perfectly honest with you I don't know what's going on. People tell me certain things. I don't know what her situation is. I have a job to do, I have a wife and child to take care of. So I don't pay attention to things that I don't know anything about. I've got my own situation to deal with.

What a caring response!

On the other hand, if you're Henry Winkler -- who played the Fonz on "Happy Days" -- you might respond by, say, trying to help her out. Via the NY Post:

The Fonz is working to bring Moran to "Arrested Development," the critically loved but ratings-challenged sitcom that's headed for Netflix, according to a published report. "Henry is absolutely shattered over what's become of Erin," a pal of Winkler's told The National Enquirer. "He desperately wants to help get back back on her feet."

And that, folks, is why I love Henry Winkler, and why Scott Baio can jump up my ass. A little compassion goes a long way.






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Comments Are Welcome, Bigots and Trolls Are Not


  • My take on Baio's comment is that he's trying not to feed the beast. He doesn't want to join in on the 'Gosh isn't it a shame what happened to Erin Moran?' bandwagon, and realises he would be by making a public comment.

    Pajiba obviously doesn't have that problem. Nice pics.

  • Nadine

    ...holy shit I totally predicted this. I know everyone did, but I am going to ignore that and claim I'm the only one.

  • You do not want Baio up your arse, Dustin. That shit's permanent.

  • poo

    Christ, you people are young. Baio and Moran didn't just work together on Happy Days & Joanie Loves Chachi, they fucked each other silly. They started dating on the show and they're endless fucking all over the set got to be so bad that the producers finally had a trailer set aside just for the two of them to fuck in.

    But of course, it didn't last and they broke up, but they still had to work together and that turned into a huge problem, which was one reason why Joanie Loves Chachi was so horrific. The two of them did NOT part on good terms, so I can see Baio basically not giving a fuck and have absolutely no problems with him not giving a fuck.

  • BlackRabbit

    Fuck! There, now the number of fucks is even. OCD away!

  • Your act is tired

    It was obvious before I even read this post that you were gonna throw politics in it. Yawn.

  • Jezzer

    It was obvious before I even read the comments that people were going to be cunty about the mention of politics.
    Sneeze.

  • ExUSA

    I met Mr. Winkler last year and he was very gracious, kind, and engaging when we spoke. As if I wasn't already a fan for life of his!

  • The Unemployed Are Just Lazy

    It's always weird what posts on Pajiba turn attack commenters from YouTube.

    Dustin's point is not that Scott Baio is a dick because he is not dropping everything in his life to help a former co-star, its that he is displaying a complete lack of compassion. Compassion is free and immediate and there is no shipping charge.

    All Baio would have to do was alter his message a little bit to evidence a sliver of humanity. Whether Moran is a former friend, co-worker or just somebody he passed on the street, she is clearly going through a rough time and a kind word might mean something somehow. Maybe a kind word would mean nothing, but its so easy to give, why not give it a shot?

    Baio has a family and other responsibilities? Wow, I'm shocked! That makes him unique and it was important to bring up. Some of the posters here have responsibilities? Thanks for letting us know.

    Wait, I feel bad about chastising some of you.

    I'll make up for it for by looking for a post right now about immigrants dying trying to cross the desert in Airzona to come to the US to find work and then we can have some fun.

  • dizzylucy

    Completely agree - neither he or WInkler, or anyone else for that matter, is obligated to help out a former co-worker, but what's the harm in being nice?

  • alannaofdoom

    " I don’t pay attention to things that I don’t know anything about."

    WOW.

  • Green_Eggs_and_Hamster

    Look, Joanie Loves Chachi. That doesn't mean it was reciprocated. Sometimes, it just doesn't work out.

  • googergieger

    Why is The Fonz better than Chachi?

  • Erich

    Winkler was on O&A the other day, and Erin Moran's situation was brought up.
    He said that virtually the entire cast of the show wants to help her, but she needs to be ready to accept the help.
    He said that they could keep giving her money, and the root problem would never end. But once she accepts that she needs help and is willing to do what it takes, they'll be at her side.

  • mograph

    What? Sure, that's darn nice of Winkler, but do you guys think that Baio and Moran are family? They *worked* together. Thirty years ago. His reaction is pretty normal for someone who hasn't kept in touch.

    Maybe you should try to separate the real from the fictional.

  • ,

    Because if the National Enquirer says it, it HAS to be true.

  • petitesuissesse

    I work at a library that contains the papers of Ashley Montagu. They were pals. The Fonz was pals with one of the greatest minds of the 20th century and noted fighter for civil rights. He will always be a supremely cool guy.

  • Guest

    Dustin, Baio tried to help her a lot in the past which is why he no longer is involved.

  • Donocaster

    Well, just like the fat news lady story, Pajiba reacts with a jerk of the knee. The author of this post (must likely) doesn't know any of the people involved, so reacting by characterizing Scott Baio as unfeeling seems a bit harsh. Just because he worked with Ms. Moran decades ago when they were both children doesn't give him any real responsibility for her well being. I know there are many ex-coworkers that I wouldn't lift a finger to help if they needed it! How about you Dustin?

  • Bedewcrock

    Well, Scott Baio has quite the history of being pretty jerky. Google "Scott Baio" "racist" "comments" if only for this gem of a tweet: "I'm NOT racist for posting a pic of M.O. My WIFE'S BEST FRD IS BLACK,HELLO"

    Granted, that doesn't mean he needs to help her. I think it just kind of showcases that Henry Winkler is pretty lovely.
    Also #ScottBaioruinseverything: www.scottbaioruinseverything.t...

  • Arran

    But the Fonz convinced Joanie that smoking was seriously uncool! I can't believe TV isn't real.

  • sherlockzz

    Now I see this completely differently. On one hand, there's Scott Baio pleading complete ignorance of Ms. Moran's circumstances but at least giving a personal explanation as to why and it is a legitimate reason, he has his own responsibilities to his family and loved ones. At least Baio had the stones to speak in person.

    On the other side is some publicist flunky employee of a one time tv icon who puts out a canned press release referring to his boss as "the Fonz" (really? That's how he refers to himself?) and claiming a totally unsubstantiated effort at getting Ms. Moran a job, maybe, perhaps, who knows?

    What was not claimed was whether he actually threw her any cash. So, compassion is having a publicist say nice things about you because you pay them to do so? Give me a break. I think I'll go pay someone to say I'm working tirelessly to help out "fill in the blank with a where are they now celebrity". Call me Mother Theresa.

  • TheAggroCraig

    The paper called him "the Fonz", not the source. But the source is questionable because it's "a pal of Winkler's [who] told the National Enquirer."

  • sherlockzz

    Point taken. I never clicked the link which made that clearer.

  • sourbob

    I dunno. I'll give the Fonz credit for being a good guy. And I'm no fan of Scott Baio.

    But I rankle at the notion that a person is a jerk simply because they don't want to take lifetime responsibility for every washed-up person they worked with thirty years ago. And he didn't say "to hell with her" or anything, he just said it was none of his business and he has his own life and family to worry about. He could have done better, but he wasn't awful or anything.

  • Hermano

    I agree with your point overall, however even without the comments referred to above, Scott Baio is just an asshole, plain and simple. So is his wife.

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/...

  • Gina

    I'm left wondering why anyone cares, though. Slow news day? Why don't we have some headlines about who killed Princess Di or Jo-Benet Ramsey while we're at it?

  • Aaron Schulz

    How dare scott baio be more concerned about his own families well being then someone else.

  • Long_Pig_Tailor

    At the same time, it's also an issue of Winkler being an absurdly good person even in comparison to other pretty darn good people. Was Baio being kind of a dick? Sure, but Winkler's being way more than kind of awesome. It's sort of an unfair comparison; the Fonz is an outlier of goodness.

  • valerei

    Agreed! Just because they worked on TV together a million years ago doesnt mean they stayed friends and doesn't mean that anyone is obligated to help her out.
    And furthermore...just because she's not poolside at a mansion doesn't exactly mean she's getting food stamps. She's not famous anymore, she's not rich anymore. That doesn't mean she's in the gutter and if it does then she needs to work on it herself. Like regular people.
    As for that picture: Does she look awful in the face? Yes! Does she look dirt poor? Not at All!
    I'm aquitting Scott Baio.

  • LibraryChick

    I'm dropping the charges too. If Ms. Moran has made poor life choices, particularly in the realm of
    addiction, Mr. Baio may be trying to distance himself from her since so
    much in Hollywood rides on reputation. His statement translates as,
    "Scott Baio is still a self-absorbed douchebag, but now he's also a
    father." Yes, of course his own family comes first. It still would have
    been more gracious to say, "From what I've heard it's a sad situation. I
    hope she resolves her issues." This way if Ms. Moran is struggling with
    addiction, he's not guaranteeing money to support poor life choices,
    but he's also not being overly critical.

  • sourbob

    Seriously. Anyone who thinks the takeaway on this is "Look how awful Cha Chi was to Joanie!" lives in a strange, tv-addled universe.

  • dizzylucy

    I've come to the conclusion that Henry Winkler is a lovely human being. I listened to his Kevin Pollak Chat Show interview a while ago, and he seems like the sweetest guy.

    Never had that impression of Baio at all. How hard would it be to have said "I haven't kept in contact with her, but wish her well" or something along those lines? What a jerk.

  • KV

    "To be perfectly honest...."

    I always wonder why people use that phrase. Does it mean when they do not start a statement with it, they are being dishonest?

  • e jerry powell

    Or, at least, imperfectly honest.

  • $173399

    Joanie appeared on a local morning news show a couple of years ago to promote some charity event she was a part of... and she was clearly very drunk at 7am in the morning. Its hard to get your life together when you're in that kind of condition.

  • Jezzer

    I wonder what she was doing later, at 7am in the evening.

  • e jerry powell

    A pet peeve of mine as well.

  • "Here's Why Henry Winkler is a Better Human Being than Scott Baio"

    Like that was ever a question. And give Erin a job, but not on camera. Being non-famous would probably work better for her.

  • e jerry powell

    And we have a winner!

  • e jerry powell

    Somehow I don't think that anyone should have Scott Baio up the ass.

  • plz_thx

    Barry Zuckercorn's a better dude than Bob Loblaw, eh? Who woulda thunk it?

  • John W

    I don't know if you're aware but Erin Moran in the past has disavowed all associations with Happy Days and Joanie Loves Chachi. I don't know what the reasons are but there might a reason why some of her former cast mates aren't rushing to her aid.

  • JenVegas

    I think *THINK* a lot of that had to do with her and other castmates getting screwed out of merch royalities and stuff like that. I think I remember her and Potsy and Ralph Malph had some sort of long standing feud with the producers over that.

  • poop

    So she and Anson Williams (Potsie) and Most didn't have any responsibility for reading their contracts or having a lawyer read through them vis a vie the merch royalties?

    Fuck that noise.

  • BlackRabbit

    Yeah, that does seem kinda dickish. It's POSSIBLE he just doesn't have the money to help her. On the other hand, I'd much rather have had Baio's list of dance partners than Winkler's.

  • Bert_McGurt

    I'd rather be happily married for over 30 years than on a trashy reality show looking for a wife at 45. Not to mention that the goddamned FONZ probably did just fine before he was married as well.

  • Gina

    It's not possible to financially help out everyone who needs it. Likewise, it's pretty rare for someone to be able to keep tabs on all their former coworkers. But still, at least an expression of sympathy would have been more appropriate.

  • Bert_McGurt

    At the very least, her dogs look quite happy.

  • TK

    No wonder she's broke. Feeding those fucking beasts must cost a goddamn fortune.

  • TheOriginalMRod

    That is what I was just thinking!

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