Wednesday, June 24, 2009


Yes, there was 'Star Search', and that show about TV bloopers, the endless commercials for which he was the consummate pitchman, and of course, his years as Johnny Carson's sidekick on 'The Tonight Show'. But as a League of Themselves member, Ed McMahon did exemplary service for Toobworld with his connections to two dozen different TV shows. McMahon died just after midnight on Tuesday at the age of 86, after a series of health problems including a broken neck in 2007. And he had financial difficulties in his last years that cast a dark cloud over the public's memories of him.

But for Toobworld, we just want to remember the larger than life personality and good humor of Ed McMahon which could not be contained even by his hearty frame.

Here are those shows which can be considered linked together in Toobworld because of the participation of Ed McMahon:


- My Roommates (2005)

"Las Vegas"
- Degas Away with It (2004)
"ALF's Hit Talk Show"
- Drew Carey/Dennis Franz (2004)

"It's All Relative"
- Our Sauce, It Is a Beauty (2004)

"That '80s Show"
- Road Trip (2002)

- The Brain Game (2001)

"Just Shoot Me!"
- Finch on Ice (2000)

"Sabrina, the Teenage Witch"
- Prelude to a Kiss (1999)

"Suddenly Susan"
- Ben Rubenstein, Meet Joe Black (1999)

Jerry Seinfeld: 'I'm Telling You for the Last Time' (1998) (TV)

"Muppets Tonight"
- Episode #2.5 (1997)

"Malcolm & Eddie"
- The Commercial (1997)

'Weird Al' Yankovic: (There's No) Going Home (1996)

- Halloween - The Final Chapter (1995)

"Living Single"
- Crappy Birthday (1993)

"The Larry Sanders Show"
- Hank's Wedding (1993)

"Who's the Boss?"
- A Well-Kept Housekeeper (1991)
"Full House"
- Star Search (1989)

"The Cosby Show"
- Can I Say Something, Please? (1989)

- Tonight, Tonight: Part 1 (1988)
- Tonight, Tonight: Part 2 (1988)

"Amazing Stories"
- Remote Control Man (1985)

- Roller Disco: Part 1 (1979)
- Roller Disco: Part 2 (1979)

"Here's Lucy"
- Lucy and Johnny Carson (1969)

Ed McMahon provided a series of fictional characters to the Toobworld registry as well. The one I remember best is Lamont Franklin in "The Adventure Of The Eccentric Engineer". (Not that he was around long in that episode of 'The Adventures Of Ellery Queen' - Franklin was the murder victim.) Probably his longest-running fictional character would have been Charlie Dickerson, a TV personality in St. Paul, as seen on Tom Arnold's series, 'The Tom Show'.

He even gave voice to characters in the Tooniverse, from 'The Angry Beavers' to 'Bruno The Kid', and even to a cartoon version of hmself in 'Duck Dodgers'.

"Duck Dodgers"
- Queen Is Wild, The/Back to the Academy (2003)

"Family Guy"
- When You Wish Upon a Weinstein (2003)

"The Simpsons"
- Treehouse of Horror IX (1998)

"Pinky and the Brain"
- The Pinky and the Brain Reunion Special (1998)

Ed was an old hand at being a pitchman, from the old school. And he had quite a line of products that benefitted from his endorsements. His appearance in most of these* should also be counted in his League of Themselves tally.
TV commercials:
Cheer laundry detergent

DirectTV (1998)

Conseco Direct Life (w/Alex Trebek) (1999)

Miller Automotive car dealer (Los Angeles area)

Mr. Mobility (2006)

Premier Bathrooms (2005)

American Family Publishers, 2009

Longtime commercial spokesman for Anheuser-Busch, makers of Budweiser, Michelob and other brands of beer.
*I'd exclude any blipvert in which he played some other character - like the Budweiser commercial with Frank Sinatra in which they were both members of the US Cavalry.

I'm thinking 2010 will be the Year of the League of Themselves for the TV Crossover Hall Of Fame. And for January, traditionally the month in which we celebrate Classic TV, who could be a better candidate than Ed McMahon?

I am correct, Sir!

Heyoooooo and Godspeed....


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