Laugh-In was a comedy factory on television in the 1960s and 1970s the way Saturday Night Live and The Daily Show are today. Regular cast members included:
- Lily Tomlin
- Goldie Hawn
- Ruth Buzzi
- Chelsea Brown
- Judy Carne
- Henry Gibson
- Arte Johnson
All were featured by nightclub comics and show hosts Dan Rowan and Dick Martin in Rowan & Martin’s Laugh-In.
Celebrity guests included:
- John Wayne
- Rita Hayworth
- Tiny Tim
- Jack Benny
- Johnny Carson
- Sammy Davis, Jr.
- Zsa Zsa Gabor
- Peter Lawford
- Henny Youngman
- Flip Wilson
Why was it funny when Judy Carne said, “Sock it to me” and was doused with water? I don’t know. It can’t have been a surprise to her or the audience. But, it was funny every time.
We cherished and forgave Goldie Hawn her ditziness when she forgot lines from the Laugh-In wall at the end of the show.
Flip Wilson repeated the phrase, “Here come de judge” about a judge character that Sammy Davis, Jr. eventually adopted as his own, “Order in the courtroom – here come de judge!”
The Flying Fickle Finger of Fate Award was designed to be mispronounced and often was.
There was a recurring sketch of an old man and an old woman on a park bench, as he tries to pick her up in one of the recurring vaudevillian themes:
He: Do you believe in the hereafter?
She: Of course I do!
He: Then you know what I’m here after!
Who was the man in the yellow raincoat and hat riding a tricycle who kept falling over?
Lily Tomlin’s Ernestine, the telephone operator, showed, presciently, that monopolies could get complacent.
“Fair? Sir, we don’t have to be fair. We’re the telephone company.”
Flip Wilson’s impish Geraldine wriggled out of the consequences of bad behavior with his/her signature line, “The devil made me do it.”
After a one-time special on September 9, 1967, Laugh-In began its six-season, 140-episode run on January 22, 1968, ending on March 12, 1973.
It won a Golden Globe award in 1969 for Best TV Show.
In 2002, it was ranked #42 among TV Guide’s 50 Greatest TV Shows of All Time.
Get your own copy of Rowan & Martin’s Laugh-In Sock It To Me Collection from amazon by clicking on the title or the image below.
Carol Covin, Granny-Guru
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