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Old Oct 23, 2009, 09:30 AM   #1
Blackguard
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Default Rip Soupy Sales January 8, 1926 October 22, 2009

Milton Supman better known as Soupy Sales has passed on

From MSNBC.com:

DETROIT - Soupy Sales, the rubber-faced comedian whose anything-for-a-chuckle career was built on 20,000 pies to the face and 5,000 live TV appearances across a half-century of laughs, died Thursday. He was 83.

Sales died at Calvary Hospice in the Bronx, New York, said his former manager and longtime friend, Dave Usher. Sales had many health problems and entered the hospice last week, Usher said.

At the peak of his fame in the 1950s and '60s, Sales was one of the best-known faces in the nation, Usher said.
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"If President Eisenhower would have walked down the street, no one would have recognized him as much as Soupy," said Usher.

At the same time, Sales retained an openness to fans that turned every restaurant meal into an endless autograph-signing session, Usher said.

"He was just good to people," said Usher, a former jazz music producer who managed Sales in the 1950s and now owns Detroit-based Marine Pollution Control.

Pie-throwing trademark
Sales began his TV career in Cincinnati and Cleveland, then moved to Detroit, where he drew a large audience on WXYZ-TV. He moved to Los Angeles in 1961.

The comic's pie-throwing schtick became his trademark, and celebrities lined up to take one on the chin alongside Sales. During the early 1960s, stars such as Frank Sinatra, Tony Curtis and Shirley MacLaine received their just desserts side-by-side with the comedian on his television show.

"I'll probably be remembered for the pies, and that's all right," Sales said in a 1985 interview.

Sales was born Milton Supman on Jan. 8, 1926, in Franklinton, N.C., where his was the only Jewish family in town. His parents, owners of a dry-goods store, sold sheets to the Ku Klux Klan. The family later moved to Huntington, W.Va.

His greatest success came in New York with "The Soupy Sales Show" an ostensible children's show that had little to do with Captain Kangaroo and other kiddie fare. Sales' manic, improvisational style also attracted an older audience that responded to his envelope-pushing antics.

Sales, who was typically clad in a black sweater and oversized bow-tie, was once suspended for a week after telling his legion of tiny listeners to empty their mothers' purse and mail him all the pieces of green paper bearing pictures of the presidents.

The cast of "Saturday Night Live" later paid homage by asking their audience to send in their joints. His influence was also obvious in the Pee-Wee Herman character created by Paul Reubens.

Sales returned from the Navy after World War II and became a $20-a-week reporter at a West Virginia radio station. He jumped to a DJ gig, changed his name to Soupy Heinz and headed for Ohio.

Familiar television face
His first pie to the face came in 1951, when the newly christened Soupy Sales was hosting a children's show in Cleveland. In Detroit, Sales' show garnered a national reputation as he honed his act a barrage of sketches, gags and bad puns that played in the Motor City for seven years.

After moving to Los Angeles, he eventually became a fill-in host on "The Tonight Show."

He moved to New York in 1964 and debuted "The Soupy Sales Show," with co-star puppets White Fang (the meanest dog in the United States) and Black Tooth (the nicest dog in the United States). By the time his Big Apple run ended two years later, Sales had appeared on 5,370 live television programs the most in the medium's history, he boasted. He had a pair of albums that hit the Billboard Top 10 in 1965; "Do the Mouse" sold 250,000 copies in New York alone.
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Old Oct 23, 2009, 08:13 PM   #2
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I read this yesterday or early today, RIP, I always thought Soupy seemed like such a nice guy!
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Old Oct 23, 2009, 08:15 PM   #3
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You can catch him on YouTube. He was really popular during the Ford Falcon (1960-65) Era.

I think he graduated from the Three Stooges School of Slapstick Comedy. Boy, he could let those little pies fly!
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Old Oct 24, 2009, 08:44 AM   #4
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He is on Disc 2 of the Beatles Ed Sullivan DVDs (9/12/65).


Soupy well miss ya...btw duriong the summer the Detroit Historical Musaeum had a Soupy display.
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Old Oct 24, 2009, 10:10 PM   #5
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Tim! Glad you're back in town!
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Old Oct 25, 2009, 03:12 AM   #6
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I loved watching his show when I was a child. White Fang, Black Tooth and Pookie were favorite characters.
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Old Oct 29, 2009, 05:42 AM   #7
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Here's a nice article I found:


Comedian Soupy Sales and his Beatles connection

October 23, 8:09 AMBeatles ExaminerSteve Marinucci

Soupy Sales, the rubber-faced comedian whose anything-for-a-chuckle career was built on 20,000 pies to the face and 5,000 live TV appearances across a half-century of laughs died Thursday in New York. He was 83.
We're very sad today. One of our favorite comedians from our childhood and adulthood, Soupy Sales, passed away Thursday.

Soupy had been in declining health for many years.

Beyond his career as a children's show host, Soupy also managed to forge a career as a singer, such as it was with a voice that was more comic than melodic.

He performed his hit, "Do the Mouse," on the Sept. 12, 1965 edition of "The Ed Sullivan Show." Unfortunately, his performance probably didn't get noticed as much as he would have liked. One of the other acts on that show was the Beatles.

That show, and three others the Beatles performed on, is on DVD. The shows are complete and with commercials and are a great time trip back to a wonderful era.

Horror Happenings Examiner Charles Rosenay!!! told us "When I produced our first Beatles Weekend Getaway in the Catskills in the 80's, the special guests were Sid Bernstein, May Pang, comedian Dick Shawn, and also Soupy Sales."

And Dennis Mitchell, host of "Dennis Mitchell's 'Breakfast With the Beatles,'" told us on Facebook that "Soupy came into the studio and did the morning show with us, I believe around 1997 or so. He used a cane and had slowed down some, but big smile, very sweet and still busted us all up. An American treasure."
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