Person of Interest: Groucho Marx

I’m thinking about doing this on a regular basis, highlighting a fascinating person for a day.  Let me know what you think.

Today, it’s all about Groucho Marx.

You may recognize the glasses above.  Usually, they are used in gags or pranks, but they actually represent a famous early 1900s comedian named Groucho Marx.  He was born today in 1890 in New York.  His mom pushed him and his brothers into entertainment, even though Groucho originally wanted to be a doctor.

He became famous for his quips at the audience.  Originally, he and his brothers were singers.  They would crack jokes at each other on stage and realized the audience much preferred them as comedians.  They went from the theater to movies.  One of their most famous movies with “A Night at the Opera”.

They split in 1949, and Groucho went on to radio and eventually TV.  His most notable show was “You Bet Your Life” where it was more about his ad-lib jokes to the contestants than it was about the actual game.  He struggled physically and mentally towards the end of his life, trying to continue to do too much well into his 80s.  He died in 1977 from pneumonia.

It’s amazing how one man’s life can affect so many people.  He has inspired comedians and actors for decades.  Can you imagine what would have happened if he had become a doctor instead?


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