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Spotlight: Patty Duke eager to join Baxter for spin on ‘Glee’

Patty Duke
Patty Duke

Local fans of the television show “Glee” will see a familiar face on screen.

Patty Duke, the Oscar- and Emmy-winning actress who has called Coeur d’Alene home since the late 1980s, will guest star, along with Meredith Baxter, in the season 4 finale on Thursday night.

Duke, who goes by her married name Anna Pearce off stage, is of course no stranger to television. “The Patty Duke Show” aired for three seasons, from 1963-66, and she has dozens of TV shows to her credit. Of late, however, she hasn’t done a ton of television.

She jumped at the chance to do “Glee,” she said recently.

“Honest to goodness, it was like stepping into Wonderland,” she said. “You keep seeing all these kids that you’ve seen on TV going by. Some are rushing to dance rehearsal. Others are prerecording the songs they’re going to sing. Others are at wardrobe fittings. I’m telling you. How do they keep all those tops spinning. I was in awe.”

Of course, this being “Glee,” one has to ask: Does Duke get to do any singing or dancing?

“I hope not,” she said with a laugh. “Not in this episode. There are rumors that Meredith and I will be in the next season, but they are just that, rumors.”

Duke plays Jan, who runs a jewelry store with her longtime partner, played by Baxter. They counsel one of the “Glee” characters who wants to get engaged.

Duke added that she and her husband, Mike, have always appreciated how “Glee” has helped kids who are different learn they have a place in the world.

“I could tell the moment I stepped out of the production van that I was in a rarified atmosphere,” she said.

Is this an experience she would repeat?

“And repeat, and repeat and repeat,” she said. “I don’t work that often anymore, I must confess I was very nervous. Darren (Criss, who plays Blaine) … he took me under his wing and helped me feel so comfortable. It was just what I needed.”

Rapper Tyler, The Creator will be in town this week, on the heels of a national controversy.

The Associated Press reported this on Wednesday:

PepsiCo is once again learning the risks of celebrity partnerships after an ad for Mountain Dew was criticized for portraying racial stereotypes and making light of violence toward women.

The soda and snack food company said it immediately pulled the 60-second spot after learning that people found it offensive. The ad was part of a series developed by African-American rapper Tyler, The Creator, and depicted a battered white woman on crutches being urged to identify a suspect out of a lineup of black men.

A goat character known as Felicia is included in the lineup and makes threatening comments to the woman, such as “Ya better not snitch on a playa” and “Keep ya mouth shut.”

The woman eventually screams “I can’t do this, no no no!” and runs away. The word “do” is in apparent reference to the soft drink’s “Dew It” slogan.

The AP story concludes: Management of Odd Future, the hip-hop collective led by Tyler, The Creator, issued a statement apologizing to anyone offended but said the ad was taken out of context. It noted the men in the ad’s lineup are Tyler’s friends and Odd Future members.

The artist “absolutely never intended to spark a controversy about race,” the statement said. “It was simply an, again, admittedly absurd story that was never meant to be taken seriously.”

Tyler, The Creator will perform at the Knitting Factory, 919 W. Sprague Ave., at 9 p.m. Wednesday. Check out for ticket information.

Too Far North productions has scheduled the second of its Bada Bing! Comedy Series nights at the Bing Crosby Theater in downtown.

The June 15 event will feature:

Dwight Slade, winner of the 2008 Boston Comedy Festival who also has appeared on TBS’ “The Very Funny Show,” Comedy Central’s “Premium Blend” and HBO’s “Best of the U.S. Comedy Arts Festival”;

Kelsey Cook, a recent Washington State University graduate who was selected to perform at the She-Devil Comedy Festival in New York City;

Kane Holloway, the Seattle comedian who won the 2011 Mt. Rainier Comedy Cage Match and has opened for David Alan Grier and Owen Smith.

Tickets to the Bada Bing! show go on sale at 10 a.m. Friday. They’ll be $15 and available through TicketsWest, (800) 325-SEAT or>