April 16, 2013

Jonathan Winters, R.I.P.

Simply put, Jonathan Winters was one of the funniest men ever to appear on television.  For that matter, he was probably one of the funniest people ever - often, his mere appearance was enough to start one laughing.

He had his demons, as so many creative people do, and battled them.  He had hits and misses, as we all do, creative or not.  But he had a wonderful gift, of which he made abundant use - the gift of the ability to make people laugh.  And rather than any prattling around on my part, let's let Jonathan Winters leave his own legacy, in his own words.

I've posted this one before - it's Winters with Dean Martin.  It's funny every time you watch it, and it shows just how unpredictable he could be.


Winters made the big time with his appearances on Jack Paar's program.  He was a master of improv: again, you want to start laughing even before he gets going.


More fun with props.


Another clip of Winters from the Paar show.


Maude Frickert - one of his most famous characters.


Another clip of Winters with Deano - playing another famous character, Elwood P. Suggins.


Finally, although I've never been a big fan of Robin Williams, there's no question but what putting the two of them on the same show at the same time was as dangerous - and hilarious - as television could get.

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