The original anarchic comedy hero for teenagers and college students, Soupy Sales, died Thursday in a hospice in New York City after suffering from multiple health problems. He was 83. Soupy, one of the only known men to have splattered a pie in Fank Sinatra's face and take more than 20,000 cream-fille tins to his own, won over TV audiences young and old, but mostly young, in the 1950s and '60s.
His memoir "Soupy Sez"(M. Evans, 2001), written with Charles Salzberg, supplied the precise ingredients for successful pie-throwing: "You can use whipped cream, egg whites or shaving cream, but shaving cream is much better because it doesn't spoil. And no tin plates. The secret is you just can't push it and shove it in somebody's face. It has to be done with a pie that has a lot of crust so that it breaks up into a thousand pieces when it hits you."
According to the NY Times, Soupy was born Milton Supman in Franklinton, N.C. His last name was pronounced "Soupman" by neighbors, so he called himself Soupy as a youngster. Mr. Sales was later a longtime panelist on TV's "What's My Line," a host for a variety talk show on WNBC Radio in the 1980s, worked with Howard Stern and a behind the scenes pioneer for jazz on television in the 1960s.
Here's a montage of some Soupy-gets-pied scenes: