All together now: I object to this shitty, shitty news.
Harry Anderson, who played the boy-faced judge and amateur magician Harry Stone on Night Court, has died. WSPA -TV reports that Harry was found dead at his home in Asheville, North Carolina this morning. As of now, we don’t know exactly how Harry died. His son Dashiell told TMZ that he died of natural causes. Police say that foul play wasn’t involved. He was 65.
Harry Anderson’s first love was always magic. He got into magic as a kid. At 17 years old, he moved to San Francisco where he performed magic on the streets for coins. He then ended up at the Magic Castle in L.A. where he met his agent. Harry’s agent got him a few guest spots on Saturday Night Live, which led to him getting cast as Harry “The Hat” Gittes on several seasons of Cheers. While he was on Cheers, he landed the role that pretty much everyone knows him for: Judge Harry Stone on Night Court.
Harry put a lot of himself into Judge Harry. Like Harry, Judge Harry was into magic and was a stage 10 Mel Tormé fanboy. Mel Tormé was on Night Court a few times. Harry played Judge Harry Stone for all 9 seasons of Night Court from 1984 to 1992. He was nominated for three Emmys. Post-Night Court, he guest starred on many TV shows (including playing himself on 30 Rock) and was in the original It.
In 1993, he starred as Dave in the sitcom Dave’s World with three legends: Shadoe Stevens! Meshach Taylor! And Bea Arthur! Dave’s World ran for four seasons.
Just the other week I was thinking that a revival I wouldn’t mind that much is Night Court, because it’s time for the triumphant return of Harry Anderson, Markie Post, Richard Moll, and Marsha Warfield. And now Harry Anderson is gone.
Rest in peace, Harry, you are now in heaven grossing the angels out with your vanishing finger trick.