I was saddened this evening to learn that Larry Harmon, the man who made Bozo "The World's Most Famous Clown," died today. Here's the lead graf from one news story (Chicago Tribune)…
LOS ANGELES — Larry Harmon, who turned the character Bozo the Clown into a show business staple that delighted children for more than a half-century, died Thursday at his home of congestive heart failure, his publicist told The Associated Press. He was 83.
I don't know who played Bozo on the TV station I watched as a kid –Detroit, I think– but he would have been trained by Harmon as part of the "franchise." And we did love Bozo's antics on his live action show and in cartoons featuring the clown as a character.
By the way, as a measure of the character's influence, what other clown's name is used as a reference to someone acting in a strange way? Actually the term "bozos" predates the clown by a good many years but what image comes to mind if you refer to, say, upper management as a bunch of bozos?
Always leave 'em laughing.
I never found Bozo to be as scary as some other clowns are. He was sorta cool, in some strange, clownish way….
TV clowns, including Clarabell and Bozo, are safe with only their images to possibly cause upset. Meeting clowns in person, however, is not without its risks. And never, never allow clowns to enter your home at night! You should be afraid! — JG