Saturday, March 25, 2017

Sympathy Saturday

Chuck Barris

The past few months have been wrought with celebrity deaths, proving that only two things in life are guaranteed: Taxes and Death.

One of the ones that really caught my eye, along with that of the infamous Chuck Berry, was another Chuck. Chuck Barris.

How many remember watching The Gong Show"? It was a great little 30-minute primetime television .Wikipedia has this to say about it: "It was broadcast on NBC's daytime schedule from June 14, 1976, through July 21, 1978, and in first-run syndication from 1976 to 1980 and 1988 to 1989. The show was produced by Chuck Barris, who also served as host for the NBC run and from 1977 to 1980 in syndication. The show is best remembered for its absurdist humor and style, often awarding participants ridiculous and worthless prizes."

I absolutely loved the show! You got a bellyful of laughs. But some great acts were cast from that show's participants as well.

Who can forget Chuck Barris as he sometimes comedically took the stage to host the show? And he did so that everyone, guests and participants had the best time ever! Those watching from home had to keep coming back the next week, just to see who, and what, was going to be on!

How many of you know that Barris produced the show? Or that when the Gong Show first arrived on the scene, Barris was already an old hand at creating and producing game shows? I'm sure you will remember The Dating Game, and The Newlywed Game. He also wrote music. His biggest hit being Pallisades Park" in 1962.

Did you know that the hit film, directed by George Clooney, A Dangerous Mind, was based on Barris'  autobiography of the same name? He claimed to have been a CIA assassin from the 60's to the 70's. He wrote a sequel to that book, Bad Grass Never Dies, in 2004. However, it never reached the acclaim of the first book.

Barris will not be forgotten. He passed away this past Tuesday, March 21, 2017, at his home in Pallisades, California from natural causes. He was 87 years old.

While no relation, Chuck Barris was an icon from my late teens until my mid-twenties. And I highly admired his work, which has barely been touched here.

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