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The Odd Couple

4.02  ·  Rating details ·  12,950 Ratings  ·  107 Reviews
Comedy / 6m, 2f / Int. This classic comedy opens as a group of the guys assembled for cards in the apartment of divorced Oscar Madison. And if the mess is any indication, it's no wonder that his wife left him. Late to arrive is Felix Unger who has just been separated from his wife. Fastidious, depressed and none too tense, Felix seems suicidal, but as the action unfolds Os ...more
Paperback, 108 pages
Published February 12th 2010 by Samuel French, Inc. (first published 1965)
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Kathy Worrell  ツ
I had to read a story (Diversity Challenge) published in the year that I was born.

What a great audiobook. Nathan Lane was Oscar Madison, he was hilarious.
Ahmad Sharabiani
Odd couple,
عنوان یک: «زوج عجیب، نمایشنامه»؛ نوشته: «نیل سایمون (۱۹۲۷)»؛ مترجم: «الهه مشتاق»، نشر: «تهران، نیلا، ۱۳۸۴، در 72 ص.»، شابک: 964-857323-9، کتاب حاضر تحت عنوان «زوج ناجور» با ترجمه: «شهرام زرگر»، توسط همین ناشر چاپ شده است. عنوان دیگر: «زوج ناجور نمایشنامه»، موضوع: نمایشنامه آمریکایی-- قرن ۲۰م.

عنوان دو: «زوج ناجور، نمایشنامه»، نوشته: «نیل سایمون (۱۹۲۷)»؛ ترجمه: «شهرام زرگر»، نشر: «تهران، نیلا، چاپ نخست ۱۳۸۴، در 72 صفحه»، فروست: «قلمرو هنر؛ ۹۳:، شابک: 964-8573-22-0، موضوع: نمایشنامه آم
...more
Patrick
May 08, 2017 rated it really liked it
Comedic and fun, this play has great moments of levity and the characters are excellently defined through their dialogue. One of the first plays I've ever read and convinced me to read a lot more of them.
Rachel C.
A play about how a friendship can be as intimate and infuriating as a marriage.

(Note 1: I definitely have a real estate fetish. All I kept thinking was, "Damn, how did Oscar score an eight-room apartment in New York City?!)

(Note 2: Gwendolyn and Cecily - that's a tip of the hat to Oscar Wilde, yes?)
Edward Cheer
May 12, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: favorites
This has been a long one coming. Of all of Neil Simon's plays, no matter which ones I've scouted out and read with mild enjoyment, the one play by him that critics everywhere seem to enjoy the most has always lingered behind my shoulder. Since I've been going through the highest recommendations I've received from friends and critics and I've waited to read this play for a long time and... yeah. Yeah, I really like it.

The Odd Couple is about Oscar, a slob who's living on his own since his divorce
...more
Su
Sep 07, 2017 rated it really liked it
Neil Simon's female version of The Odd Couple (with Olive and Florence instead of Oscar and Felix) is actually even funnier than the original! With a more refined script/jokes and some added dimensions to Olive's and Florence's friendship as female best friends, the Female Odd Couple is everything you loved about the original and more. For instance, Olive hosts a Trivial Pursuit game night instead of poker, and the trivia questions plus the girls' cheeky commentary add some extra hilarity to the ...more
Prasidh Ramson
Jun 26, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A three act play telling the story of what happens when neat freak Felix is kicked out of his house by his wife and stays with happy go lucky, slovenly Oscar.

Written originally in 1960, the dynamic has seeped its way into modern culture. One can draw a line from this original play to most mix matched characters on TV, book and film since. (Lethal Weapon came to mind).

The writing is smart, snappy and very witty. Character's traits are established quickly through accounts of themselves via other
...more
Lauren Hancock
May 28, 2017 rated it it was ok
This one was not one of my favorites, which was a bit surprising to me because it's probably the Neil Simon play I've heard of the most. It was fun and quick, and it had its moments, but I didn't connect as much with the characters or plot. The conceit of the poker game felt, to me, like it slowed the story down and added extra weight--surprising because Simon is usually so good at jumping right into the action and not providing unnecessary backstory or slow context.
Eileen
Sep 25, 2017 rated it it was ok
For a comedy, the first scene is a little dark with all the talk of suicide. I'm not one who thinks suicide is something to joke about. Probably a director could make the rest of the jokes funnier. The situation is humorous, and it would be a fun play to see, but I've read other plays I liked better.
Paul LaFontaine
Sep 02, 2017 rated it it was ok
Its hard to go wrong with this famous setup - the fastidious roomate vs the slob. Then add Neil Simon's ability to drop in the funny lines and its a winner. Better than the TV show, which was great too. Enjoyed it.
Julian Munds
The dialogue in this one is slick. The first two acts are full of off the wall colourful characters. I know this can be funny with the right actors but it is still two dimensional. I don't know who
These two men are. It's well written fluff.
Cassie
Jul 31, 2017 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: classic readers
Recommended to Cassie by: hoopla
The audiobook version has Nathan Lane reading for Oscar, and anything with Lane is automatically 2x as entertaining. A classic comedy.
Elena
Jul 25, 2017 rated it liked it
Actual Rating: 3.5
I didn't like this play quite as much as others, but it was still enjoyable. I've found that comedies are not typically my style, but The Odd Couple definitely impressed me.
P.S. Winn
May 06, 2017 rated it really liked it
Great idea as a slob and a compulsive cleanliness freak have to room together.
HaydenM
Mar 08, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This is the funniest play I've ever read. I love other plays by Neil Simon but this one takes the cake. It has a super funny plot line and is very relatable. I would recommend this to anyone who is a fan of comedic plays. It is a little slow at the beginning but that's okay.
Mandi D
I didn't realize this was a play script when I originally wanted to read the book and I am glad I didn't because I probably would not have given it a chance. I did enjoy the storyline overall but it did take a little bit to get into the story. Once the characters opened up, I found myself smiling as two best friends and divorcees males were living together. Seeing how they treated each other gave so much of their personalities and why they previously relationships may have taken a turn for the w ...more
Maxwell Jakobovits
Mar 21, 2011 rated it it was amazing
I've always been a fan of playwrights as witty as Neil Simon, and this book does nothing but confirm my beliefs that he is an American literary legend. From the very beginning, through the thickening plotline, right down to the closing dialouge, this story is captivating, and absoulutly hilarious to say the least.

From a reader's point of view, the story is funny, and always has you guessing what happens next. Even without the stage notes in the margins, the emotions and personalities of the char
...more
leon
May 25, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Synopsis: An Excellent script produced by Neil Simon, telling a tale of two opposites forced to live with each other.
Classification: This book is one that would be preferably suitable for ages 13 and up due to some language and some inappropriate ostracizing. This book's seemingly only purpose is to create a captivating/intriguing setting while at the same time emulating on the comedic responses of these two antonyms. The genre setting for this script would be classified as realistic fiction. T
...more
Anjum
Mar 17, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: plays
I read the female version of this and now all I can say is that I am dying to read the male version to see what's different! This play is going to the top of my Neil Simon list and is probably now my third favorite play of all time. Hilarious page-turner, this one is. I wish that the end hadn't been so abrupt, but I sense that that probably wouldn't have been so jarring on stage as it was on paper. My one critique, aside from that, was that I couldn't really keep the friends straight. I knew who ...more
Lori
I was expecting this to be good, just not as good as the original, but it is! Why haven’t I thought of putting Neil Simon on my Favorite Writer list up to now? Shame on me! There are so many quotable and hysterical lines that I couldn’t decide which ones to post along with my review - It’s all oh so good.

Just a heads up: If you are a fan of the movie I doubt that you will be able to read any of Florence’s (Felix Unger) or Olive’s (Oscar Madison) lines without picturing Walter Matthau or Jack Le
...more
Lori
Jul 12, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Terrifically funny audio version. Oscar Madison, the slob, and Felix Unger, the neurotic neat freak. The two of them divorced and lonely, live together in Oscar's eight room apt. in Manhattan. The hiliariousness ensues when Felix turns Oscar's life upside down by cleaning incessantly, cooking gourmet meals, and crying over his divorce. The final straw is when he ruins their chances with the Pigeon sisters by becoming all depressed about his divorce. Will their friendship surivive?

Filled with won
...more
William
Apr 22, 2012 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: forensics, theatre
Clearly a vehicle for a female cast, but something also gets lost in translation. Oh, the jokes are still there, and there's still some smart reparté, but the view is still essentially masculine. This is a dress-up version of the male play, something of a contrivance. An evening of Trivial Pursuit? Hmmm, something doesn't seem exactly right. There's an off-key aspect that makes the characters less rounded.

Of course, if we begin to ask realistic questions, then the context of female leads begins
...more
Heather
May 18, 2012 added it
Shelves: read-for-work
So, after reading the play, I did some searching for quotes about it to promote the show (as it's on PTC's season next year). I found a New York Times review from March, 1965, after the actual premiere of the show on Broadway. The last paragraph had me drop-jawed:

"The Odd Couple has it made. Women are bound to adore the sight of a man carrying on like a little homemaker. Men are sure to snicker at a male in domestic bondage to a man. Kids will love it because it's funny. Homosexuals will enjoy i
...more
Whitney (First Impressions Reviews)
The Odd Couple, in play form, is the perfect short humorous read, or listen in my case. The principal actors voiced the performance well and I found myself laughing aloud at times. Oscar and Felix are a stitch without intention. In a sense, it reminded me of the French film The Dinner Party, a constant critique of the other's habits and interests with the dud turning up on top, (in this case Felix). To me, Oscar was more of a distraction, and while they played off each other well, it was FU that ...more
Eric Mikols
Jan 19, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: scripts
Hilarious. I like Neil Simon when he's does straight comedy like this. The characters are a riot and a love the downward spiral of the "marriage". The dialog is great and the scenes with the poker game are all over the place. All three acts are great and move, and there's little down time.
I wish the characters had more time to develop deeper traits, and deal with their issues. Part of my problem with Neil Simon, so far, is that beyond "Jake's Women", he doesn't seem to resolve the story like I w
...more
Kristine Hansen
May 20, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: plays
I can't help it - I hear Tony Randall and Jack Klugman in my head as I read this. Found the play funny and the dialogue good enough to where I had to read bits out loud to whomever happened to be around when I was reading it. I read this once back in high school, but think I got a lot more out of it now, recognizing a lot of the nuances and wit that I think went over my head back then (what can I saw, I was somewhat young and naive in those days).

Overall, I'm glad I read it, but now want to tra
...more
Christian
Sep 13, 2016 rated it really liked it
Picked this play up after falling down a Mel Brooks Wikipedia hole and discovering that Neil Simon was one of many famous writers to come out of Sid Caesar's "Your Show of Shows." I think everyone has a passing familiarity with "The Odd Couple" either because of the iconic theme music or the millions of mismatched buddy comedies it has spawned over the years. I'm fairly certain, too, that I have seen the Matthau/Lemmon film adaptation, but it was years ago and I feel like this play is something ...more
Lindsay
Aug 05, 2008 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: those wanting a comedy
Recommended to Lindsay by: Mrs. Harris
So I had my students act out scenes from this play & they were convinced that Oscar & Felix were gay (which they aren't) that isn't the point. The point is that they are an odd pairing. One is a clean freak, the other messy. One is emotional, the other is isn't. Most of us have friends that seem to possess opposite traits, but what would happen if you lived under the same roof? That is precisely the even Simon explores in the play. The dialogue is generally quick witted. The supporting c ...more
Steph
Oct 10, 2014 rated it liked it
Oscar and the guys have heard that Felix's wife kicked him out and he didn't show up for work. They're beginning to worry that he's missing:
ROY: Maybe he had an accident.

OSCAR: They would have heard.

ROY: If he's laying in a gutter somewhere? Who would know who he is?

OSCAR: He's got ninety-two credit cards in his wallet. The minute something happens to him, America lights up.

My dad was Felix.
Sarah
Sep 16, 2007 rated it it was amazing
This fantastic play has several hilarious lines, including this gem (one of the funniest lines ever written): "I can't take it anymore, Felix, I'm cracking up. Everything you do irritates me. And when you're not here, the things I know you're gonna do when you come in irritate me. You leave me little notes on my pillow. Told you 158 times I can't stand little notes on my pillow. 'We're all out of cornflakes. F.U.' Took me three hours to figure out F.U. was Felix Ungar! "
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60047
Marvin Neil Simon is an American playwright and screenwriter. He is one of the most reliable hitmakers in Broadway history, as well as one of the most performed playwrights in the world. Though primarily a comic writer, some of his plays, particularly the Eugene Trilogy and The Sunshine Boys, reflect on the twentieth century Jewish-American experience.
More about Neil Simon...
“I got brown sandwiches and green sandwiches. It's either very new cheese or very old meat. - Oscar Madison, from The Odd Couple” 5 likes
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