Reading the post about the “You can call me Ray” guy reminded me of another guy around the same era. I can’t remember what show he was on. I wanna say either “Laugh-In” or “The Smothers Brothers’ Show”. Anyway, he was this creepy- looking guy who kind of resembled the Riff Raff character from Rocky Horror and his whole schtick was popping up peiodically and saying in a creepy, lewd manner “I’m with You” and then walking off.(Ya gotta love 60’s TV). Anyone remember this guy/show or did I imagine it?
The only thing close to this that I specifically remember is in the Abbot and Costello movie Abbott and Costello Go to Mars, they run into two hoodlums. Whenever one of the hoods says something, the other hood responds, “I am wit’ YOU.”
Incidentally, despite the name of this classic, their rocketship actually touches down in New Orleans and Venus, but never Mars–although that was indeed the intended destination, but then, A&C were not the originally intended crew.
Oh, I know exactly who you mean, and I can fill you in on him tomorrow. He was interviewed in one of Richard Lamparski’s “What Ever Happened To . . .?” books, which I have at home.
He really was creepy—long straggly hair, lewd, sort of effeminate manner, bug-eyes. Anyway, just cool your jets and I’ll have The Straight Dope on him for y’all tomorrow!
Not to steal Eve’s thunder, but I seem to remember him from The Danny Kaye television program. When he’d smarmily say, “I’m with yooouu.” Danny would always (in shock/horror) intone: “No you’re NOT with me!”. Man, the things we laughed at in those days, huh?
Anyway I only remembered that because I am 51 and I’m sure that Eve will know the name of this guy because I have burned too many gray cells since then.
. . . So when’s someone gonna start a thread on Frank Nelson, the “EEEEyessss?” guy?
The eeeyyyYYYEEEEEESSSsssss guy.
Great Jumpin’ Jehosephat—where the hell was I last July, to miss THAT thread? I love Frank Nelson! He used to be on “The Jack Benny Show” a lot, as floorwalkers and maitre d’s, and played Frank Ramsey on “I Love Lucy.” He’s been parodied on “The Simpsons” a couple of times lately, too . . .
He used to have his own Fan Web page, but it seems to have been disconnected . . .
Well, I’ll be back tomorrow with the poop on the creepy “I’m with YOU” guy . . .
I vaguely remember a horrified Danny Kaye responding to that character, but the image that is indelibly imprinted is that of Jackie Gleason, on more that one occasion, replying “No-o-o-o, you’re NOT with me!”
i remember the guy, i am pretty sure that he was on the Johnathon Winters show.
OK—more than you ever wanted to know about the “I’m with You” guy, from Richard Lamparski’s 1986 “What Ever Became Of,” vol. 10.
His name was (and still is, for all I know) Stan Ross, born 1926. He became a bit actor and nightclub comic after WWII, though for the rest of his life he had to keep a day job as a garment-district salesman. The “I’m with You” gag originated in 1950 on Jack Haley’s show: “It got a laugh and I was paid $75 . . . Right away I got calls to do it.”
That became his only schtick: he appeared on the TV shows of Jackie Gleason, Eddie Cantor, Jonathan Winters, Milton Berle and others–he also did some straight character work, right through the 1980s, but not much.
He was VERY bitter when Lamparski interviewed him: “I’m a stooge, a bit actor. The lowest rung on the comedy ladder. All the big-time comedians are sadists and monsters. Berle, Jerry Lewis–all of them except Jack Haley treated me like dirt.”
Phil Hartman used to do this great impression of Frank Nelson. He did it a few times on SNL and I remember him mentioning in an interview that he was a big Frank Nelson fan himself. He may even have voiced the Frank Nelson character on The Simpsons. I get a smile just thinking of Frank Nelson stepping in behind a hotel desk and unleashing his lusty “eeeeyyyyYYYYEEEEEESSSSSssss”. The man was inspired.
Just as I was reading Felix’s post, my office phone rang, and I had the hardest time not answering, “eeeeYYYYESSSSsss?”
Saw the great Frank Nelson on a “Jack Benny Show” rerun recently. Jack’s in a department store, and Frank is the pompous floorwalker, with a huge flower in his buttonhole.
Frank: eeeeYYYYESSSSsss? May I hellllllp you?
Jack: Are you the floorwalker?
Frank: NOOOooo. I’m a float in the ROOOOse Bowl Parade.
Thanks, Eve. I knew I could count on the Straight Dopers to get this one. You definitely jump to the top of the “phone-a-friend” list when I see Regis!