Tuesday, June 23, 2009

RIP, Ed McMahon

Because I've been busy today, I haven't had time until now to post anything about the death of longtime "Tonight" show sidekick and TV icon Ed McMahon. McMahon died early Tuesday at the age of 86. Though no cause has been given for McMahon's death, he had suffered from a series of recent health problems.
I don't really think I can say anything about McMahon that hasn't been said already. Nearly every media outlet in the country has written about his skills as a foil and his omnipresence on television. In addition to his 30 years with "Tonight," he hosted or appeared on a slew of other shows, including the amateur talent contest "Star Search."
Near the end of his life, McMahon, unfortunately, become better known for his series financial problems than for his work as a broadcaster. But -- in the public eye at least -- he was able to maintain a sense of humor about himself and his situation. Take, for example, his "good sport" cameo in this Cash4Gold ad, which ran during this year's Super Bowl.
Dignified? No. But it is funny, and McMahon is clearly in on the joke. And that's, I think, how most people will remember him -- as the guy with the cavernous laugh who, no matter what life threw him, was able to laugh at himself. He'll be missed.

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