In the book, it’s Ritter who reveals Somers’ mysterious second role. If you recall the opening (I apologize for getting the theme song stuck in your head, but if I have to hear it for the next few hours in my brain, so do you — it’s extremely catchy), Jack is riding his bicycle on the Ocean Front Walk on Venice Beach in Southern California. As he does, he sees a woman in very short shorts walking towards him, and he’s so distracted by her that he falls off his bike. We only see the woman from the back, and she’s got curly, brown hair. According to Ritter, that’s Somers. “That brunette is Suzanne with a wig,” he said. “You can tell by her little Suzanne buns.” Well, that sure is one way to put it!
Look, things were different back then and it’s not exactly something we’d say now. Somers was also known in earlier decades for her ThighMaster and ButtMaster exercise systems, so perhaps that makes it a little better? I don’t know. I may have been alive during that decade, but I also remember talking to my friends about how much I hated its blond jokes, particularly because I am one. It was a weird-yet-popular show back then, and the comedy talents of Joyce DeWitt and the late Somers and Ritter (Ritter passed away in 2003 from an aortic dissection) are undeniable. Whatever you think of the show and its premise, these folks are comedy treasures, and it’s fun to know about this secret little appearance from Somers. Rest in peace to her.