RIP Rip Taylor

(Above source: ‘Rip Rip Hooray’ YouTube video)

Three months after mourning the death of Rip Torn, we now bid RIP to another Rip: Rip Taylor. The comedian known for his frantic confetti tossing, outrageous mustache and equally outrageous toupee, died Sunday at 84.

Taylor became a well-known figure through scores of appearances on variety and game shows starting in the early 1960s.

Here’s a typical variety show appearance — on the Jerry Lewis Muscular Dystrophy Association Telethon in 1982:

A frequent visitor to Chuck Barris’ The Gong Show, Taylor was chosen to host Barris’ The $1.98 Beauty Show, a “game show” as indescribable as Taylor’s humor. So we’ll just have to show you a complete episode:

The $1.98 Beauty Show ran for 78 episodes in syndication over two seasons from 1978 to 1980.  

Taylor had previously been a regular on ABC’s short-lived 1977 series, The Brady Bunch Variety Hour, and would later voice Uncle Fester in ABC’s 1992-1993 version of The Addams Family (two seasons, 22 episodes). In the spirit of the Halloween season, here’s episode one, “Happy Ester, Fester”:

You can stream more episodes of this animated Addams Family series via Dailymotion.

Finally, a documentary about Taylor titled Rip Rip Hooray! was produced a few years ago, but apparently hasn’t been released yet. You can watch the opening, featuring a nice compilation of Taylor through the years, right here:

About Les Luchter

Les Luchter is a former managing editor of Multichannel News, editor-in-chief of Cable Marketing, and news editor of Broadcast Week.

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