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Groucho Marx, 1895-1977
“Trademark: Effrontery.” Time’s cover caption for Groucho Marx was succinct and apt for the comedian who made a lifelong career in movies, radio, and television, spewing his snide, caustic humor at anyone and everywhere. Marx got his start early in vaudeville with his zany brothers. Professionally, he proved to be the most enduring, landing a quiz show on radio (1947–60) and television (1950–61), You Bet Your Life. A master at ad-libbing, only Groucho Marx could win awards for humor with a quiz show, including the George Foster Peabody Award. “It’s a good thing the guy died,” Marx quipped, “otherwise we couldn’t have won any prizes.”
Ernest Hamlin Baker, 1951
Time cover, December 31, 1951
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