Wednesday, September 28, 2011

The 5 worst characters on radio sitcoms

As a general rule, I enjoy most radio situation comedies.  However, there were some characters that I just can't stand:

5. Waldo Binney on the Life of Riley (Dink Trout) - I guess the main reason I don't like him is that he's annoying to me rather than being funny.  The show survived fine without him so we know he wasn't crucial.

Another thing, he seemed to steal his character from the Irene Ryan character on the Jack Carson Show.  The characters could be twins (male and female.)  Besides, who wants to listen to someone complain all the time?

4. The Happy Mailman on Burns and Allen (Mel Blanc) - Mel Blanc was a man of 1000 voices and one of those voices was as the Mailman on the George Burns, Gracie Allen Show.  While Mel Blanc was a superb imitator and original voice artist, he (generally) wasn't much of a comedian.

Of course, he seemed to flourish in that role on the Jack Benny show but I digress.  As the mailman, he was one of many annoying, unneeded characters who would show up on the show in the early 1940's.

3. Margaret Davis, the landlady on Our Miss Brooks (Jane Morgan) - Jane Morgan always played the same kind of character, an elderly advice-giver; usually a maid or a landlady.  It really matters not to me on what show or what what role she was in, I thought she was annoying.  She is one of several reasons why Our Miss Brooks is low on my listening totem pole. 

Her voice is grinding, but not near as bad as Portland Hoffa, who would easily make this list, except she was on a variety show (the various Fred Allen shows) and not a situation comedy.

2. Gloria the housekeeper on the Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet (Bea Benaderet) - By far Bea Benaderet's worst role.  She seems to portrays Gloria as having some sort of speech problem, perhaps a cleft lip.  Sorry, but that's what it sounds like to me.  Ultra annoying, unfunny, unneeded character.

1. Herman the Duck on Burns and Allen (Clarence Nash) - Clarence Nash was actually the voice of Donald Duck (and Daisy) at Disney for years.  I suppose someone on the Burns and Allen show didn't think the Happy Postman was torture enough to listen to so they decided to bring in something more ridiculous and worse-sounding.

The fact is this: the show was one you could really immerse yourself in, even with the Happy Mailman but the stupid talking duck on the show simply ruins it for me.  The duck and the Mailman were on during the same years.  WHAT WERE THEY THINKING?

©Jimbo 2010/2011

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