Soupy Sales Dies At Age 83


The year of celebrity deaths continues with the death of kids’ TV favourite Soupy Sales. His shows were before my time, and yet even as a kid, I’d heard of him. He was sort of a combination of two typical TV types: the kid-friendly comedian who does silly sketches and takes pies in the face, and the all-powerful host and authority figure, like Arthur Godfrey. The combination of adult and kids’ TV styles became a template for a lot of children’s TV (like The Muppet Show, another combination of kiddie-show slapstick with the insincere adult variety show format), and also became the inspiration for a lot of parodies; a lot of Krusty the Klown bits are Sales-inspired. In a way he was the David Letterman of kiddie-show hosts, sort of making fun of his own format and trying to loosen it up a bit.

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Soupy Sales Dies At Age 83

  1. I am also too young to have seen any of Soupy Sales' original television fare but he was somebody who was always around on all the game shows and talk shows and Hollywood Squares etc. Kind of like Joey Bishop he became somewhat of a fixture on these types of shows and was "famous for being famous." I did always find him funny though.

    As for the Letterman comparison I think this quotation from the newspaper article captures it:

    "The comedian never lost his contempt for TV executives, contending they had ruined television. He has said most station managers wouldn't "know a tap dancer from a trombone player" and their main contribution to TV was "getting drunk on their six-martini lunches" "

  2. His claim to fame – pies in the face. Now's there's creative arts for you.

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