He regularly gives away millions of dollars to sweepstakes winners. He has sold hundreds of products, from Alpo dog food to Budweiser beer; he’s been seen on thousands of commercials all over the world. He appears with Jerry Lewis every year on the Muscular Dystrophy Telethon. But, of course, what Ed McMahon is most famous for is his role as Johnny Carson’ s straight man on The Tonight Show, history’s most epochal talk show.
In this warm and sometimes hysterically funny autobiography, the man who made it all look so deceptively easy talks about the brightest stars, the zaniest bits, and the most embarrassing moments both on Johnny’s couch and out of camera range. Ed shares insights about the comic genius called Carson, who was not only his on-air partner, but also a deep and long-standing friend. And he reveals the origins of some of modern culture’s most memorable utterances — both catchphrases and rallying cries – lie “Heeeeeere’s Johnny!”, “Hi-yoooo,” and “You are correct, sir!”
Ed also goes back to his early years – how he broke into radio discjockeying while still a teenager and ventured into the infant medium of television, ultimately producing a record of more screentime logged than perhaps anyone else in the industry. He talks candidly about his drinking, his marriages and divorces, and his family, particularly the tragic loss of his son Michael. Finally, he discusses life after The Tonight Show, including his forays into new shows like Ed McMahon’s Star Search, one of the most successful syndicated programs on TV, and the WB Sitcom The Tom Show.
His career spans almost sixty years, and he has shared laughs with everyone from Frank Sinatra and John Wayne to Rosie O’Donnell and Sinbad. The Ed McMahon story is big.
How big is it?
It’s so big that Ed’s own story can be said to be the very story of modern American entertainment itself.
And now, “Heeeeere’s Ed!”