Springs resident, talk show icon and author Bill Boggs knows television from both sides of the camera. He was executive producer for The Morton Downey Jr. Show and built a decades-long career interviewing a long list of important, successful people on programs such as Midday Live, Bill Boggs Corner Table and My Generation, as well as in his Got What it Takes? motivational book. Now, at 78 years old, Boggs has twisted all his knowledge and experience together in a new novel satirizing the industry that made him. The Adventures of Spike the Wonder Dog: As Told to Bill Boggs hit shelves (virtual and otherwise) on May 19, bringing big laughs when America needs them most.
The novel tells a fictional, contemporary account of his beloved, real-life English bull terrier (think Spuds MacKenzie), Spike, who had a brief run of fame doing regional TV alongside Boggs in the 1970s. Unfortunately, Spike died before Boggs got his big break in New York, and the television star was left to forge ahead alone.
More than three decades later, Boggs’ new book imagines how things would have gone if Spike had lived and joined him to take the entertainment world by storm in the modern age of reality television and social media. The result is a madcap and hilarious adventure that pulls no punches when it comes to lampooning the industry Boggs knows all too well. And people are already taking notice.
To celebrate his book’s release, Boggs answered our 10 Questions—a set of rapid-fire queries we ask many of the East End’s most notable personalities. His answers are below.
Look for our full interview with Bill Boggs about The Adventures of Spike the Wonder Dog next week.
1. Favorite book?
Act One: An Autobiography by Moss Hart..
2. The last thing that took your breath away?
The last thing that took my breath away occurred in the bedroom three days ago.
3. The last thing that made you cry?
Watching the looting on television and the murder of [George] Floyd. I had tears in my eyes watching the video of the knee on the neck. It’s not too charming, but I was very upset about that.
4. It’s the eve of your execution… What would be your last meal?
Thanksgiving dinner. Extra cranberry sauce.
5. Something worth fighting for?
6. Something worth giving up?
7. Spend an afternoon with anyone—alive or dead—who would it be?
8. An interesting object in your home or office?
My son sent me a little English bull terrier bank. It’s a dog just like Spike the Wonder Dog except it’s a bank. It’s sitting right here next to the television with a happy expression on its face. This just came about two weeks ago and it has a place of honor in the home. It’s a Spike the Wonder Dog piggy bank, except it’s a doggie bank.
9. Last film you watched?
Jeffrey Epstein: Filthy Rich—the Netflix documentary. Prior to that, Mrs. America, but they’re not movies.
10. Is there a form of writing you’d still like to tackle?
I want to write the sequel to my book. And this is not book hype…I have the title. I have the sense of what’s going to happen. I’ve been taking notes for a year, but I haven’t started it because I’m working on book promotion. You have to be able to block out time every day for deep focus and deep concentration, and I can’t do it now. There’s some really funny stuff that’s going to be in there. Can I pull it off twice? We’ll see.