Hollywood Walk of Fame Stars You Never Knew: Richard Bernard ‘Red’ Skelton
On August 5, Mariah Carey became the 2,556th star to earn a permanent spot on the Hollywood Walk of Fame—whose lights already illuminated the path? Each week, PopCrush will look into the oft-forgotten icons of yesteryear. Between Slim Summerville (?), Tichi Wilkerson Kassel (!) and the Fibber McGee and Molly radio show, this is your own Walk Through Memory Fame.
Do you like doughnuts? Do you like watching people mimic the manner in which other people eat doughnuts (silently)? Well, SWEET CHOCOLATE CHRIST, would you have had a time at one of Richard Bernard "Red" Skelton's "Doughnut Dunkers" burlesque or vaudeville shows. You might have also enjoyed "Guzzler's Gin" and "Clem Kadiddlehopper," too, but who are we to say, really?
Listen: The long and short of it is this guy forged a legendary career in comedic TV and film, won a truckload of Emmys and was granted the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Screen Actors Guild in 1987. A 3,500 square foot, interactive museum devoted to American comedy was erected in his honor, gosh sake! But let's start from the beginning...
Skelton's prominence in radio, film and TV took shape in the 1940s and 1950s, but he got his start in 1923 at age 10, entertaining people with pantomime acts as part of a traveling "medicine show." That's when you and a bunch of unlicensed salesmen tour around on a truck or horse or whatever, peddling strange elixirs to people who are none the wiser.
"I just want to be known as a clown," said Skelton, who appeared in 1953's The Clown —and whose father, Joseph, briefly did work as a clown at Peru, Indiana's Hagenbeck-Wallace Circus. Also, Groucho Marx called him "the most unacclaimed clown in show business" in Groucho and Me, which is a compliment (?).
He called theaters "palaces."
Skelton has two Walk of Fame stars—both of which were presented on February 8, 1960—which officially makes him a WaLk Of FaMe *~~*~*constellation*~*~. His TV star is on the South side of the 6600 block of Hollywood Boulevard, where you can outfit your feet with the latest "saucy styles" at Maya Shoes of Hollywood, and his radio star can be found on the North side of the 6700 block of Hollywood Boulevard, where you can scout the latest Hollywood movie posters at Hollywood Movie Posters.
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