“With Tonight’s Guests… Bette Davis and the Who!”

I remember my mother mentioning seeing Lenny Bruce and the Three Stooges on the same TV show (Steve Allen) when she was a kid. I marveled at the uh, sheer WTFness of vaudeville/burlesque comedians mixing it up with one of (if not THE) first Angry Young Man comedians. Interestingly, she said that it wasn’t THAT big of a surprise due to the fact that the Stooges HAD worked in vaudeville (and DeRita was a pretty well known burlesque comic.)

Television Diary

06.19.16 - Tony Orlando and Dawn

You’d probably never expect to see Ronald Reagan on the same stage with the Jackson Five. But during the golden age of the TV variety show, it was fine to book two performers from opposite ends of the entertainment spectrum. Incongruous couplings happened all the time. Sometimes they’d appear together and sometimes separately, but the following list proves that when it comes to variety shows, expect the unexpected—

Jackie Robinson and Bela Lugosi (Texaco Star Theater, 9/27/49)

Frank Sinatra and Lon Chaney Jr. (Texaco Star Theater, 11/28/50)

Jane Russell and Jerry Lee Lewis (The Steve Allen Show, 8/11/57)

Liberace and Lou Costello (The Steve Allen Show, 8/18/57)

Errol Flynn and Don Adams (The Steve Allen Show, 12/1/57)

Lenny Bruce and the Three Stooges (The Steve Allen Show, 4/5/59)

Nat King Cole and Rin Tin Tin  (Perry Como’s…

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