Playing a clip from the 1981 second season of Bosom Buddies isn’t usually the sort of thing to make a guy cry, but Tom Hanks got emotional watching himself and Peter Scolari goofing around in a cabin, contemplating a little cannibalism. Appearing on Tuesday’s Jimmy Kimmel Live to promote his new Apple TV+ release, the sci-fi (or is it?) climate change apocalypse movie Finch, Hanks spent the post-promotional part of the interview looking back on his time in hose and heels alongside Scolari, who died from cancer last month at age 66.
“We were molecularly connected,” said Hanks of his comedy partner in the cult hit (but quickly cancelled) star-making sitcom, where the two famously wore dresses for comedically contrived reasons that haven’t aged all that well. Still, Hanks said that the two young actors bonded immediately amidst all the wackiness, their shared love of improvisational shenanigans making the long days under the wigs and foundation an equally mutual exercise in creative silliness. In the clip Hanks wanted to show (from the second season, when the drag concept was mostly discarded), his Kip and Scolari’s Henry do contemplate eating each other once their restorative cabin getaway goes predictably sideways. But, as Hanks said, at least there was some baby fat on the young Hanks’ bones at the time, while Scolari, “had the body of a gymnast.” (A fact that Girls viewers will note Scolari kept tight well into late middle age.)
In Finch, Hanks continues his attention-grabbing penchant for one-person star vehicles (trading in volleyball for an adorable dog and Caleb Landry Jones’ robot sidekick), but told Kimmel that being part of a comedy duo with Scolari was a lifelong pleasure. Telling Kimmel that he and fellow Bosom Buddies veteran Holland Taylor had lunch just last week, the now Hollywood icon reminisced about the days when two hungry actors made life miserable for TV directors unused to dealing with a couple of improv-happy goofballs. Hanks recalled the time one particularly no-nonsense director’s schoolmaster-style discipline caused the equally strong-headed Scolari to threaten to storm into the booth (presumably in panty hose) and direct the show himself. Sending love to Scolari’s wife and children, the now 65-year-old Hanks returned from the Bosom Buddies clip visibly choked up at the sight of two startlingly young actors and friends with some 40 years ahead of them.