/Rip Taylor, wacky comedian and game-show regular, dead at 84

Rip Taylor, wacky comedian and game-show regular, dead at 84



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Exuberant comedian Rip Taylor, best known for his many energetic game-show appearances and self-described as the “King of Confetti,” has died at 84.

Taylor died Sunday in Beverly Hills, publicist Harlan Boll confirmed to USA TODAY. 

Taylor’s showbiz ascent started with spots on “The Ed Sullivan Show,” where he was known as the “crying comedian.”

The comedian in the spiky blond toupee and bushy mustache made a name for himself by being outrageous. He was a favorite on everything from variety shows to talk shows to sitcoms, and had more than 2,000 small-screen credits during his career, according to RipTaylor.com.

In the 1970s, Taylor teamed with Chuck Barris to host “The $1.98 Beauty Show.” The campy “beauty and talent contest” featured winners who received a tacky plastic crown, a bouquet of rotten vegetables and $1.98 from a coin holder on Taylor’s belt. 

In later years, the comedian appeared as himself in “Wayne’s World 2” and on “The Dukes of Hazzard.” 

Charles Elmer Taylor was born on Jan. 13, 1935, in Washington, D.C. He was a Congressional page as a teenager, and served in the Army during the Korean War. 

Taylor is survived by longtime partner, Robert Fortney.


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