Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Books, Movies, TV, Pop Culture – In Memory of Steven H. Scheuer and John N. Goudas

Steven H. Scheuer, whom I did my New York University internship with from 1993 to 1995, passed away in late May/early June of 2014. He was 88 years old.

Not long after his death, Scheuer was mentioned in an online CNN article about movie critic Leonard Maltin's final movie guide. Maltin was influenced and inspired by Scheuer, who practically invented the art and industries of newspaper television reviews and movie guides.

John N. Goudas, who passed away in 2008 at the age of 72, was Scheuer's main writer for the TV Key newspaper column, which was distributed by King Features Syndicate to over 300 newspapers across the country.

Although I worked with Scheuer and Goudas for only three years, they made a lasting impression on me personally and professionally. I still remember my “job” interview with Scheuer on a cold January morning back in 1993. We met in his New York City office in the lobby of a high-rise apartment building in the East 50s. During our conversation, he showed me that he had many of the same TV, movie, and pop culture books that I had.

There were also many other wonderful moments in that office that I remember as if they had happened yesterday, such as the time none of us were answering the phone for some reason that I've since forgotten. Scheuer, who was making a rare appearance in the office while doing some errands, quipped, “Is this some sort of holiday where nobody is supposed to answer the phone?”

We also watched the O.J. Simpson verdict live on the office television.

While Scheuer couldn't pay the interns as we all anticipated a deal with the fledgling Microsoft Network that never came through (this was the dawn of the Internet in 1995), he did treat us to many nice business lunches at fancy and renowned restaurants in New York City. I also had the pleasure of making the acquaintance of Scheuer's gracious wife, Alida Brill-Scheuer, who accompanied us on many of these outings.

My internship at TV Key was the launching pad that enabled me to go on to interview and write about the iconic actors and musicians that I grew up loving.

I consider myself very fortunate to have known and worked with these titans of television criticism. They were giants in their field. They were also a couple of lovable and fun-loving characters.

The following links do them far more justice than I ever could. Thank you for everything, John and Mr. Scheuer.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Steven_H._Scheuer

http://www.obitsforlife.com/obituary/336055/Goudas-John.php

--Raj Manoharan

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