The Ed Wynn Show

CBS (ended 1950)
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  • Episode Guide
  • S 1 : Ep 39

    Georgia Gibbs/Keystone Kops

    Aired 7/4/50

  • S 1 : Ep 38

    Dinah Shore/Ben Wrigley

    Aired 6/27/50

  • S 1 : Ep 37

    Mitzi Green/Frank Fontaine

    Aired 6/20/50

  • S 1 : Ep 36

    Billie Burke/Gil Lamb

    Aired 6/13/50

  • S 1 : Ep 35

    Frances Langford/Fred Sanborn

    Aired 6/6/50

  • Cast & Crew
  • Ed Wynn

    Host/Performer

  • Lud Gluskin

    Orchestra Leader

  • The Szonys

    Themselves

  • Francois Szony

    Himself (as The Szonys)

  • Shemp Howard

    Himself (as Three Stooges)

  • show Description
  • Ed Wynn was a show biz veteran, having been a success in vaudeville, on Broadway and radio. And when the new medium of television came along, he was perhaps the first "old timer" to make the leap. Ed's character, the "perfect fool", was a giggling goofball who told awful jokes, wore bizarre clothing and usually had disheveled hair that stuck out at the sides of his heads. This seemed ideal for the new visual medium. Ralph Levy, who went on to became a successful television director/producer, was sent by CBS to L.A. to direct the new series. He immediately ran into booking problems, as most name stars were either frightened by the new gadget, or unwilling to "stoop" to doing TV. Nevertheless, the show did end up with several "firsts", including the television debuts of Dinah Shore and Lucy and Desi. The format was very simple and very vaudeville. Ed would do jokes, guests would come out and do songs and routines, and they all would perform in sketches. Though not a ratings success, the series did win two early Emmy Awards: one for Best Live Show and for Most Outstanding Personality (Wynn). At the time, TV was based out of New York where shows were performed and fed live to the few stations that were interconnected. The rest of the country saw filmed kinescope copies of the shows, which were shipped out to stations on a delayed basis. The Ed Wynn Show was the opposite. It was the first network series to be aired live on the west coast and have the kinescopes shipped east, where they would air a couple of weeks later. Ed would eventually find success in this new medium and in films as he transitioned into a dramatic character actor.moreless

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  • jaynashvil

    User Score: 689

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  • Trivia & Quotes
  • Quotes (3)

    • Carmen: You like my hat? Ed: Your hat? Yes. Delicious. There are only two things on it I wouldn't eat.

    • Ed: You see, in television, ladies and gentlemen, I must explain, the sponsor can't afford much money yet, so in television this (pointing to Sam Hearn holding a violin) becomes a whole orchestra.

    • Hattie: (to Ed, now a door-to-door salesman) I-I thought you had a television show. Ed: Yes, yes. I've been on television for three months now. That's why I started to work today. A guy's got to eat, you know.

    Notes (3)

    • The 2nd Emmy Awards ceremony was held 1/27/1950 at the Ambassador Hotel in Los Angeles. (The Emmys were based in L.A. at the time so any live program originating from New York was seen there there via filmed kinescope. Only programs based in L.A. were considered by the Emmys to be "live".) The Ed Wynn Show on KTTV won the award as Best Live Show. Also nominated were Pantomime Quiz on KTTV and Your Witness on KECA. Ed Wynn from KTTV was also the winner for "Most Outstanding Live Personality". Other nominees were Tom Harmon of KECA and KFI, Mike Stokey of KTTV and KTLA and Bill Welsh of KFI and KTLA. The awards show was televised on Los Angeles station KFI because it was only on the air daytime and would not lose revenue by preempting regular programming. Each of L.A.'s other six stations pitched in $35 each to cover the $250 cost of airing the event.

    • The 1949 Peabody Awards were announced in this week of 1950 in Manhattan. In the "Entertainment" category, The Ed Wynn Show was a winner. The series "has brought to television . . . the best techniques of stage, screen and radio."

    • According to his book My Wonderful World of Slapstick, Keaton was visiting Wynn in his dressing room. Wynn said he had a pie-throwing finish planned for the show, but it just wasn't working. Could Keaton help? With just thirty minutes before airtime, Buster raced home, grabbed his wardrobe, and came back to the studio. He quickly sweet talked the Kops into playing along with his improvised ending. There was no time left to plot things out with the control room, so the camera crew simply had to play it by ear.

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