December 15, 2012

The origins of Ed Grimley.

From a Vanity Fair article about Martin Short:
Grimley grew out of an existing Second City sketch called “Sexist,” in which a male employer interviewed two candidates for a job, one an accomplished, over-achieving young woman played by the future SCTV star Catherine O’Hara, the other a flagrantly stupid man—“the joke being,” Short said, “that the guy who’s hiring says, ‘You’re both so good, I can’t make up my mind!’ ”
Click "read more" for the part that made me laugh out loud.

Short’s version of the stupid man grew increasingly broad and outrĂ© with each performance, until he morphed into Ed, with his checked shirt (an artifact from Short’s actual teenage wardrobe), hiked-up trousers, hunched posture, and forelock greased straight up into a point. But as much of a hit as Ed was onstage, Short, by the time he joined the cast of SCTV, in 1982, had not played him in public for four years and was initially reluctant to do so again because, he said, “Ed had become a part of my life with my wife, Nancy.”....

“A part of your life with Nancy?”

“Yeah! So I’d come out of the shower nude … like this.” [Makes grimacing Grimley face.]

“With the hair sticking up?”

“Not even the hair—just nude.”

“Just doing the face and posture?”

“Just the face. And she’d say, ‘Ed, get outta here!’ Or sometimes we’d get into a fight, and she’d say, ‘I don’t want to talk to you. I want to talk to Ed! Ed, what is wrong with him?’ [Grimley voice] ‘Oh, he’s jealous of you, Miss Nancy. It’s very sad, I must say.’ This was a private thing. So when I joined SCTV, I thought it was now way too personal to do Ed.”

“Marty—are you saying that Ed Grimley had therapeutic value in your marriage?”

“Yes.”

15 comments:

Kchiker said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
EMD said...

I like Short. Even in Santa Clause 3, he gave it the old college try.

EDH said...

"I must say..."

I like Ed Grimley but I miss Jiminy Glick, truly the greatest celebrity interviewer of our time.

wyo sis said...

Thank you.

Steve Austin said...

You need a tag here for SCTV. That's really where Ed Grimley made his name.

If you want to see the first time the character appeared on TV, google " the fella who couldn't wait for Christmas" and you will get the YouTube links.

Was that 1982 SCTV episode where he was introduced. Good stuff.

ricpic said...

Jiminy Glick: I owe everything to my wife Dixie and my four boys, Morgan, Mason, Matthew and Modine.

creeley23 said...

For me Martin Short will always be the crazed Hollywood agent in The Big Picture, a comedy that seem entirely forgotten despite a great cast (Kevin Bacon, Jennifer Jason Leigh, J.T. Walsh, Teri Hatcher, and Short) and wonderfully demented script.

madAsHell said...

Soooooo......Meade does an Ed Grimley impression?

The visual isn't pretty. I'd rather stick needles in my eyes.

Ann Althouse said...

"Soooooo......Meade does an Ed Grimley impression?"

Ha ha. No, in fact, I can't even imagine him doing that. He has a notably calm demeanor and form of expression. It's very attractive!

mesquito said...

Anyone who has seen "Sunset Boulevard" knows where Grimley comes from.

Sam L. said...

I vass..not amuuussssed.

Sam L. said...

Rehapppps I hat to be zere in ze '80s, und I vasss ofer SNL zenn.

Brent said...

Ed Grimley is just one of Martin Short's brilliant charcter's, but his greatest influence and mention in his obituaries will always be Franck from "Father of the Bride". Just now, try saying "cake" without thinking of him.

His "Katherine Hepburn's brother" bit alwyas made Johnny Carson just about wet his pants.

Brent said...

Ed Grimley is just one of Martin Short's brilliant charcter's, but his greatest influence and mention in his obituaries will always be Franck from "Father of the Bride". Just now, try saying "cake" without thinking of him.

His "Katherine Hepburn's brother" bit alwyas made Johnny Carson just about wet his pants.

Amartel said...

Did he do the Ed Grimley character on last night's SNL? I saw the opening skit (which was funny). Martin Short's wife died, FYI, so maybe he brought the character back in her honor.
I like Martin Short - the SNL skit where he's practicing to become the world's first Olympic male synchronzied swimmer was the best. Also, "kek."