Soupy Sales died (died) this week.
His whacko comedy and slapstick shtick influenced many who followed, including Pee Wee Herman, Chevy Chase, and Joe Biden, as illustrated by the following anecdote:
But he almost blew it on New Year’s Day in 1965 when he had to vamp for a minute while producing a show for a New York affiliate. Sales told the kids watching to find their parents’ wallets and “get some of those funny green pieces of paper with all those nice pictures of George Washington, Abraham Lincoln and Alexander Hamilton” and mail them to him. He promised a postcard from Puerto Rico in return. When he repeated the gag in Los Angeles and Detroit, it led to a complaint from a viewer to the FCC that got Sales’ show suspended. After a flood of complaints about the cancellation, though, many of them from teenage fans of the program, the show was back on the air within a week. — mtv.com
The other great Soupy Sales story (which may not have actually happened) concerns a gag he ran teaching his big dog White Fang to read. He draws a capital F on the blackboard and asks White Fang what it is. “K” says White Fang. Sales erases the letter and tries again. “K,” repeats White Fang. They do this for another round, and Sales asks in exasperation, “How come every time I draw F, you see K?”
Again, that got him run for a while until his fans forced a comeback.
I don’t think a comback will happen this time, and not just because most his fans are old, dead, and senile.
R.I.P., Soupy, and that doesn’t spell “fuck.”