Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Many a radio joke focused on silent nobodies

We heard very little from Eddie Cantor's daughters but he talked about them a lot. They were never there but most of us know who they are and what they looked like.

On Vic and Sade, there's a whole army of neighbors the Gooks had - yet until the show reached dire straits during the war, we never heard of them. Yet most of us know them by name.

Fibber McGee talked of Fred Nitney all the time; Fred was his old Vaudeville friend yet we never hear from him. Same goes for other characters on the show, such as Sweety Face, who was talked about on most every show, yet we never ever hear from her.

On the Great Gildersleeve, how many times did we actually hear from Leroy's pal, Piggy Banks? Maybe once - if that.

On the Jack Benny Show, how little did we hear from Remley, Phil Harris' guitar player? Barely if ever but there was a time when we heard about him almost every week of the show. Mary had a mother who wrote letters that Mary read but when did we actually hear her? Mary's sister Babe was 100% real but she was rarely ever on the show.

Fred Allen used to heckle a man named Hodge White that never said a word.

Bing Crosby and Bob Hope focused a lot of jokes on Crosby's kiddos and his horses, yet when did they ever appear on radio? (Rarely.)

Milton Berle liked to talk about his wife or old girlfriend named Cynthia, but when did we ever hear from her?

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