Frequently Asked Questions

Copyright 1995-2013 Carl Birkmeyer
May not be duplicated or reproduced elsewhere without permission
Last Updated: May 2, 2013

Tell Me About the Get Smart DVDs

     Time-Life released Get Smart: The Complete Collection for sale in the U.S. in November, 2006. It's an amazing collection that has won numerous awards, including Best In Show at the TV-DVD Awards. Get Smart: The Complete Collection features all 138 episodes uncut and beautifully re-mastered.It's available RIGHT NOW from Time-Life for only $99.95 and free shipping and other retail outlets, like Amazon.com. It has over 9 hours of extras, beautifully restored masters, and comes in a cool phone booth box. Sets of all five seasons, complete with extras, can be bought from both sources, however there are DRAMATIC differences between the season sets (details below).

How come there are two versions of the DVD set?

Time-Life worked out a deal with HBO to share the rights and DVD production expenses and for both of them to release the set. Time-Life would have a year's exclusive to sell the set online and via phone order. After that year was up, HBO was allowed to sell the DVD set via normal retail outlets. In a rare move, Time-Life began by selling just the complete box set, which was a huge relief to completists like myself. The box set was a tremendous success, far exceeding anyone's projections. That led the HBO retail release to be delayed. HBO began releasing season sets in 2008, but the season sets are a stripped down version of the Time-Life sets and have very few extras. The box set is still available from Time-Life and also via retail outlets and it has all the extras.

Complete details and ordering information are available on my DVD page.

Are the sequels available on DVD too?

I have details about the sequels, their various releases, and a lot of backstory on my sequels page.

The Nude Bomb was released on DVD on June 17th and can be ordered on Amazon.com by following this link.The release has no extras. Get Smart 1995 (or Get Smart on Fox) was released by Sony on DVD on June 3rd. It is a normal retail release issued by Sony and also is available from Amazon.com. There are no extras on this disc. It's also interesting to note that this series, which was designed to make a star out of Andy Dick, does everything possible to make you think it's the original series in a sleazy marketing ploy. A DVD version of Get Smart Again popped up in early 2003 and is available at Amazon.com Unfortunately, it is a poorly done release, with no extras and a video quality that is actually below a VHS. It is available through Netflix also. A PAL version of Get Smart Again is available in Australia.

Where is Get Smart playing on television these days?

Get Smart  is playing on ME-TV in the United States. ME-TV has affiliates throughout the country but it's reach is not great and it's not in a lot of markets or on many cable stations. Check their website for whether or not it's playing in your area of the US. Worldwide, Get Smart is playing in Argentina, Portugal, Panama, Brazil, Australia, South Africa, Lithuania, and Estonia. It's also airing on the Southeast Asian cable channel Star World (thanks for the info Joseph).

What is the cast up to now?

Most of the cast and crew got together in November 2003 for the Get Smart Gathering.

Don Adams passed away September 25, 2005.
Bob Karvelas passed away in 1991.
Victor French passed away in 1989.
Ed Platt passed away in 1974.

Barbara Feldon is living in New York and is still working. She does a ton of voiceover work and has created a one-woman play that she used to perform off-Broadway. Barbara has also written a book. "Living Alone and Loving It: A Guide to Relishing the Solo Life" was released Dec. 10, 2002. You can order the book online at Amazon.com.

Dave Ketchum has a highly successful writing career and has just finished a children's book.

Don, Barbara and Bernie
Photo copyright Starstruck Pictures

Bernie Kopell is still working and does a lot of autograph shows. You can check out his current schedule on his website, BernieKopell.com. I highly recommend picking up the Sledge Hammer! Season 2 DVD to see Bernie at his best. He also has a cameo in the Get Smart movie.

 Dick Gautier has written several books on drawing and cartooning. He has a wonderful website where you can get his latest information.

Is there a logo for CONTROL?

No. A logo for CONTROL was never shown during the series. Where Siegfried had his KAOS patch on all of his outfits Max and 99 would sport their agent numbers. The unfortunate 2008 movie did have a CONTROL logo, but I don't count anything from that movie as part of GS lore. I realize that there are some websites and Facebook fan pages that have a logo, but that did not come from the original series.

Where can I get a copy of the KAOS logo?

The KAOS page has a copy of the logo. It's the only color copy of the logo that is in existence and was captured by Simon McKenzie (thanks Simon!) for this website. There is a rough black and white copy in The Get Smart Handbook, but Simon's version is much better. There is no larger or higher quality print version available, what's on that page is all that exists. However, GS fan Greg has taken the logo and created two marvelous wall plaques of the logo, available on Amazon.com. You can see it pictured to the right. There is a 9" by 7" version for $129 and a 6" by 4" version for $59. They are extremely well-made products and the best representations of the KAOS logo that I've ever seen.

What do CONTROL and KAOS stand for?

Ah, the number one myth in Get Smart history. Let's be clear - the letters in CONTROL and KAOS do not stand for anything. KAOS and CONTROL were never written as acronyms (K.A.O.S.), as U.N.C.L.E. and S.P.E.C.T.R.E. were. The names were picked because evil represents chaos and the opposite of chaos is control.  There was never an episode where any member of KAOS or CONTROL said that the names stood for something (yes, I've watched them all to check). On its Facebook page in 2013, METV incorrectly reported that the names were supposed to be acronyms but that Mel Brooks and Buck Henry couldn't think of anything that fit. They cited no source for this report and I was told by someone present at the show's creation that this story is not true. METV was just basing that on popular myth, not the facts.

What was Max's agent number and who did he work for?

Max was Agent 86 for CONTROL. According to Buck Henry, Mel Brooks came up with Max's number. It derived from the restaurant slang "to eighty-six something", which meant to cancel it, they were out of it.

Why didn't you like the Get Smart movie?

It wasn't funny. I thought it failed as a comedy, a spy thriller, and a Get Smart movie. Even if it had nothing to do with Get Smart, I thought it was horribly unfunny, borrowed way too much from other movies, and had uninteresting and irritating portrayals of the lead characters. To claim it as a comedy is a stretch and to say it had anything to do with the original series, other than the names, is a bigger stretch. I had been looking forward to a quality remake that featured a revitalization of the show and was funny. Unfortunately, we got a movie with more kicks in the crotch than laughs. I go into this in-depth on my movie page. However, it's important to note that this site is dedicated to the original Get Smart and will only feature cursory information on this production and the unfortunate sequel, which they're thinking about producing, despite a collective yawn from the audience.

What was Max's cover?

Max had dozens of covers during the show's run and no one cover was used consistently. The one that was used the most, and that most people remember, was that of a greeting card salesman/executive.

Who was Aunt Rose and why is she listed in your episode guide?

Aunt Rose was the elderly woman who appeared in the background of a ton of episodes. She was sitting at a table in One of Our Olives is Missing, the passenger across the aisle from Max in Closely Watched Planes, a bookstore customer in Strike While the Agent is Hot, and lots of other episodes. She's called Aunt Rose because in real life she was Leonard Stern's Aunt Rose Michtom.

 

What are all of the kooky gadgets in Max's apartment?

  • Net that falls from ceiling when a button is pushed
  • Invisible wall
  • Tube of safety - bulletproof tube that lowers itself around you
  • Fireplace vacuum - powerful suction activated when mantle button is pushed
  • Fireplace smoke screen
  • Desk drawer - shoots open and into the stomach of anyone in front of the desk. Activated by turning on the desk lamp.
  • Desk dagger - dagger flies out when pen on desk is lifted.
  • Laser beam staircase
  • Miniature Cannon
  • Phone gun - fires when you dial 117.
  • Spear painting - painting lifts up and spears shoot out.
  • Roll-up rug
  • Sleeping gas chair - activated by pushing chair arms
  • Gun chair - fires bullets out arms when you sit in it
  • Knockout Lamp - swings down to club person standing under wall lamp when the seltzer bottle is used.

Where can I find a shoe phone, real or fake?

There is no place that has a supply of Get Smart shoe phones for sale. Nick at Nite did briefly sell a GS shoe phone in the early 90's (details on my collectibles page), but they didn't sell well and there aren't many out there. They don't even pop up on eBay. Intrepid Get Smart fan Paul from Australia has created an actual, working shoe phone and you can read all about it here. The actual shoe phones from the series (there were several) are in the hands of private collectors.

What was 99's real name?

It was absolutely, positively, never revealed. In "99 Loses CONTROL", she leaves CONTROL and tells her fiancée that her name is Susan Hilton. However, at the end of the episode, 99 states that Susan Hilton was a fake name. The exact lines:

Max: That's all right Susan.
99: It's 99, Max. Susan isn't my real name.

Doesn't get any clearer then that!

Many people ask how the wedding between Max was handled without revealing her name. During that part of the ceremony, the Admiral snored. In addition, 99's mother always called her "dear" or "sweetie," never by a name.

What kind of car did Max drive?

There were several cars driven by Max during the five years of the series, but only two cars were driven with any regularity.


Max's Sunbeam Tiger

The car Max drove in the first four years of the series was a red 1965 Sunbeam Tiger. Without a doubt, it is the car most associated with Max and can be considered "his car." It appeared in the open of the show's first two seasons, except for the pilot. It's also the car that was used for the AMT model that was sold in the Sixties. More details on the Tiger are given below. There's a lot of mystery surrounding the fate of this car and I'm going to try and clear it up. Don Adams did drive a Sunbeam Tiger as his personal car for many years. However, that car was NOT the car used in the series. Don drove a 1966 Sunbeam that was given to him by the network because of the success of the show. That car is now owned by a private collector. The Sunbeam used in the series was a 1965 Sunbeam and its whereabouts are unknown, though I've heard many, many rumors about where it has ended up.


Max's Opel

In season five, Max drives a gold, 1969 Opel GT. He also drove the Opel in the episodes. Interestingly enough, Max's Opel also appeared in the movie "Stripes." This car was used extensively by Max in the 5th season and can be called Max's second car.


The Karman Ghia

In the opening credits of the third and fourth seasons, Max drives a blue VW Karman Ghia. However, in those season's episodes, he continued to drive the Sunbeam. The open was probably changed to reflect some type of sponsorship deal. In no episode does he actually drive the Karman Ghia.


The Ferrari

In the pilot episode,  Max drives a Ferrari 250 GT Cabriolet. The reason for that is that they probably used a stock studio sports car for the pilot. When the show was picked up, they were able to arrange a promotional deal with Sunbeam. Alert fan and car expert Scott M. identified this car for me.

The cars mentioned above are the only cars that belonged to Max. Yes, I know that there are episodes where he drove other cars, like the wedding episode, but they were not his car and are not going to be listed here. Some people have correctly noted that for a few episodes in the fourth season Max drove a Ford Mustang convertible, but that car was clearly designated as The Chief's car.

More Tiger information: According to Dick Sanders of the Pacific Tiger Club, "a look-a-like Sunbeam Alpine (rebadged with Tiger script on the side) of the same vintage ('65 or '66) was used in almost all of the shows where a Sunbeam appeared. There wasn't room to mount a machine gun (or much of anything else) under the hood of the V8-powered Tiger, so they used the Alpine which has a smaller 4-cylinder motor." Get Smart fan & DVD Producer Sue Kesler has a look-alike Sunbeam Alpine that she has beautifully restored to look exactly like Max's Alpine, including the machine gun in the hood. Check out her website and see how beautiful it looks, especially with Don sitting in it.

Special credit must go to Charles Goin, President of the Mid-Atlantic Opel Association, who identified the cars used for me, since I can barely tell a Honda from a Ford. Thanks to Dick, Sue and Charles for giving me such excellent information on the cars.

For more details, The Unclassified Get Smart Site has an excellent section on Max's cars.

How many doors did Max go through to get into CONTROL Headquarters?

It depends! There were actually four different opens in the series and there are different doors in each. It also depends if you decide to count the car doors or not. To make it easy for everybody, my Get Smart Doors Page shows all the opens and the doors in them.

Who wrote the show's theme song and where can I find the sheet music?

The theme song was written by Irving Szathmary, who was the brother of Bill Dana. Dana was Don Adams' close friend and writing partner. Jon Burlingame of the Film Music Society has written a superb article on Szathmary and I highly recommend it. Burlingame has also written a fascinating book on TV Theme Songs that is available at Amazon.com.

The music to the theme is available in a book of TV Themes. In two years of watching Get Smart on eBay, I saw the original sheet music from 1965 on sale once and it sold for around $60. That's the only time I've seen it for sale. The actual song is available on a CD called Television's Greatest Hits, Volume 1. That's available online at Amazon.com. It's also available on iTunes (thanks for the info Tom).

Is the Get Smart theme available as a ring tone for my cell phone?

Yes, or so I am told. I am cell phone-challenged and so can not give anybody any help on how to download them, but I will pass on the information I received from Aaron T - "There are a couple of sites with the Ringtone, including www.3gforfree.com. If you browse the site from your phone it is free and I believe it is compatible with many different wireless services. However, if  you do it from your computer there is a downloading charge. I also found a ring for Nextel from www.nextpimp.com. It seems as though it is pretty expensive, but I just happened upon it." Thanks for the info Aaron!! I have also added a MIDI version of the theme song on my sounds page. I DO NOT know how to convert it into a ringtone, but I've put it there for people who know how.

Do any of the cast have e-mail addresses?

Dick Gautier and Bernie Kopell have websites with e-mail addresses. They both also offer autographed pictures at their site.

What was the name of the robot on Get Smart?

Hymie was the CONTROL robot and was played by Dick Gautier. A list of cast regulars, along with brief bios of them and their characters can be found on my cast page.

Who played...?

A list of cast regulars, along with brief bios of them and their characters can be found on my cast page. The members of the CONTROL Lab can be found on my lab page. I have also assembled a list of every credited guest star in the series, in case you have a hankering to know who played Emilio Naharana in Our Man in Leotards.

Who was the agent who was always stuck in unusual places?

In the pilot episode and Our Man In Toyland, Agent 34 got that detail.
He was replaced by Victor French, Agent 44 for the rest of that season.
French was replaced by Dave Ketchum as Agent 13 in seasons two through four.
Al Molinaro played Agent 44 in the fifth season.
Joey Forman played Agent 13 in the Nude Bomb.

What were the names of Max and 99's children?

As with their mom's real name, this was never revealed. However, in the Fox Get Smart series, the male twin was revealed as Zach. It's up to you if you consider that part of Smartmania or not. Though the twins were supposed to be a girl and boy, the parts were actually played by male twins, the Everling brothers.

Name the catchphrases used in the show.

Would you believe that there were a whole bunch of them and a brief description of each can be found on my catchphrases page?

Is there a list of the cool gadgets and phones used in the series?

You betcha! I've assembled a list of just about everything used in the show that wasn't a normal spy-type device on my gadgets page.

What's this about a Get Smart play?

There is a play called Get Smart that is still performed today. It's an expanded version of the premiere episode, Mr. Big. The play is available from:

The Dramatic Publishing Company
P.O. Box 129
Woodstock, IL 60098

How can I talk with other Get Smart fans?

Join the Get Smart Mailing List where 1,000+ fans discuss all aspects of the show.

What did Mel Brooks have to do with the series?

Brooks and Buck Henry created the characters and basic premise of Get Smart. Brooks also helped write three episodes, but his involvement ended pretty much after the pilot was written, mainly to concentrate on getting  The Producers completed. In interviews now, Brooks give Buck Henry a great deal of credit for the show. Henry, who ran the show for its first two years, clearly is the one most responsible for the direction of the series. For more information about the beginnings of the show, check out my history page.

Were there any inconsistencies/goofs made in episodes?

Yes, there were many. Dale Barnard started compiling a list that has grown thanks to the contributions of several fans. Pete has collected all of the goofs into one massive collection. Please note that these are not "bloopers" in the traditional sense, merely errors in continuity.

What kind of gun did Max use?

Make-Smith & Wesson
Model-40
Ammo /Caliber-5 Rounds of .38 Special
Nickname-LemonSqueezer!
This information comes from Agent 102 who many years ago ran into Don Adams. Agent 102 filed the following report:
I asked him if the sidearm that he used on Get Smart was a particular make and model and he not only told me that it was but he showed it to me. It was in a locked box in the back of a Land Rover in the driveway. He had three of them, one for the close ups, one for drops and stunts (beat to hell) and one was his personal (with permit) sidearm. All three are identical except for serial numbers and general condition and all three were provided by the studio. The studio has the largest collection of these highly prized collectible handguns in the world. They are sought after by collectors the world over. (A recent reissue by Smith and Wesson in stainless steel and with some improvements sold out before they could get to market.)

Thanks Agent 102!

Is there a mailing list/Listserv or bulletin board about Get Smart?

Yes, there's both. The Get Smart Group averages 30 messages a week. We've got over 1,000 members and everyone is welcome to join. You may choose to receive messages through e-mail, or just post using the list's bulletin board.

Have a question that you need answered?

Drop me an I'll do my best to answer it. E-mails that ask questions that are answered in this FAQ will be deleted or mocked heavily. Please DO NOT e-mail me any pictures, sounds or attachments as unknown e-mails with attachments are automatically deleted. It would also be helpful if you put Get Smart somewhere in your subject, otherwise you risk your e-mail being considered spam and deleted automatically.


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Copyright 1995-2010 Carl Birkmeyer