Gavin MacLeod on 'The Love Boat': 'The critics hated it'

"The Love Boat" may have made him world famous, but Gavin MacLeod remembers some choppy waters for the show.

Now 82, MacLeod is promoting his new memoir, "This Is Your Captain Speaking." In the book he recalls how he landed the part of Capt. Merrill Stubing, the good-natured skipper of a cruise ship where singles found romance. "Love Boat" ran on ABC from 1977 to 1986.

"The critics hated it," MacLeod told Savannah Guthrie on Wednesday's "Today" on NBC. And they weren't the only ones. MacLeod recalled that his agent included a review when he sent him the script: "I think it sucks."

PHOTOS: Memorable TV series finales

But when the actor — at that point best-known as the wisecracking Murray on "The Mary Tyler Moore Show" — read it, he said he thought: "I don't think there's ever been anything on television like this." His wife told him the show would work with the right cast.

MacLeod credited the show with helping revive the cruise industry. But it also led to some personal inconveniences. Vacationers would sometimes send him complaints if they'd been disappointed with a cruise.

"They thought I was a real captain," he said.

What did you think of "Love Boat"?


herlock's back, and he's hanging with 'Downton Abbey'

Showtime picks up 'Homeland,' 'Masters of Sex' for new seasons

NBC's 'Dracula' aims for a sexy revamp with Jonathan Rhys Meyers


PHOTOS: TV shows and their spinoffs

Overrated/Underrated 2014

PHOTOS: 101 best-written TV shows of all time

Copyright © 2018, The Baltimore Sun, a Baltimore Sun Media Group publication | Place an Ad