Wednesday, May 17, 2006

End of an Era

New York Daily News - Breaking News: "NEW YORK (AP) -- Lew Anderson, who captivated young baby boomers as the Howdy Doody Show's final Clarabell the Clown, has died at the age of 84, his son said.

The musician and actor died Sunday in Hawthorne, N.Y., of complications of prostate cancer, Christopher Anderson said.

Long mute as Clarabell, Anderson broke the clown's silence in the show's final episode in 1960. With trembling lips and a visible tear in his eye, he spoke the show's final words: 'Goodbye, kids.'

Though Anderson was not the only man to play 'Buffalo Bob' Smith's mute sidekick, he was the best, Smith said in his memoir."

1 comment:

Jayme Lynn Blaschke said...

Huh. Thanks for posting that Bill. Out of curiosity, I Googled to see if he'd played Clarabell in that famous episode of Happy Days from 1975--but no, that Clarabell was played by a one Robert Brunner.

Shortly after that (maybe because of the Happy Days episode?) a syndicated revival called "The New Howdy Doody Show" debuted in August 1976. It was cancelled less than 6 months later, but I remember watching it religiously when I got home from school. I tried finding out who played Clarabell in that one, but not even IMDB has a full cast listed. Several sets of episodes are now available on DVD, although that's probably not of much interest to fans of the classic series.