Late television icon Betty White had many memorable characters in her 70-year career. So many, in fact, that it can be hard to remember some of them.
Most audiences remember The Mary Tyler Moore Show, and who could forget The Golden Girls? Even White’s turn hosting Saturday Night Live is fondly remembered as one of the show’s best episodes. The legend even won her fifth Primetime Emmy for her appearance on SNL, almost 60 years after her first win in 1952.
White kept busy over the course of her career. It would almost be easier to name the television shows she didn’t appear in. While some of her appearances make sense–a comedic actress guest-starring on comedy shows, others showed that White could bring her special brand of sass to any setting.
One example of White’s amazing versatility was when she guest-starred on Bones. She appeared in two episodes as Dr. Beth Mayer, a senior anthropologist who protagonist Temperance Brennan has a grudging respect for. In both appearances, she is vital to solving Brennan’s problems. The first guest spot sees her helping Brennan solve the murder of a real estate agent in season 11’s “The Carpals in the Coy-Wolves.” The second sees Dr. Mayer, now retired, giving Brennan pivotal life advice in the final season episode “The Radioactive Panthers in the Party.”
Bones was a natural fit for White. Even though the series is largely serious, it’s not without levity. White got to sprinkle in some jokes about the mating rituals of prairie dogs and erectile dysfunction. White truly made every show she walked onto better.
Hollywood Mourns Betty White
White’s passing, just 17 days before her 100th birthday, was a loss to both Hollywood and the fans at home. The tragedy inspired an outpouring of love for the actress. Fans took to the internet to share their favorite moments from the actress’s career as well as to “thank her for being a friend.”
Many celebrities and public figures shared tributes. President Joe Biden called White “a cultural icon who will be sorely missed.” Wheel of Fortune’s Pat Sajak simply said “God, I loved her.” Nicky Trebek, daughter of late Jeopardy host Alex Trebek, shared a photo of White with her father, captioned “they made each other laugh on this planet. There is no doubt in my mind they are laughing now.” White’s longstanding crush Robert Redford revealed that he “had a crush on her too.”
Additionally, several of White’s former costars eulogized the legend. Hot in Cleveland’s Valerie Bertinelli remarked “how bright must heaven be” with White there. Former SNL cast member and head writer remembered White as “the only SNL host [he] ever saw get a standing ovation at the after party.” White’s Bones costar Tamara Taylor called her “our lady of laughter.”
While the tributes to White are many, too many to list, perhaps the most touching comes from Ryan Reynolds. White played the actor’s grandmother in The Proposal, in which she stole every scene she was in.
“The world looks different now,” Reynolds tweeted. “She was great at defying expectation. She managed to grow old and somehow, not old enough. We’ll miss you, Betty. Now you know the secret.”