THE JACK BENNY SHOW
The Jack Benny Show or The Canada Dry Program or The Chevrolet Program or The General Tire Show or The Grape Nut Flakes Program… take your pick from Benny’s radio days. Whatever the whims of the sponsor, the show was Jack Benny. Benny honed his skills in radio and then brought the to American TV sets as The Jack Benny Program. Other than adding more visual gags (and the obligatory big-name guest starts), much of the sketch comedy Benny perfected on the radio made it onto TV. One notable guest who appeared on Benny’s show in the flesh was none other than Marilyn Monroe, who made her television debut on the program.
If there was one thing the TV show lacked, it was the work of Benny’s wife, Mary Livingstone. Mary was an important foil to her husband’s character’s personality. But stricken with extreme stage fright, she rarely appeared on the television show and retired from show business altogether in 1958.