Jonathan Winters was 87 years old.
This comedian, actor, writer, entertainer and artist was the creator of hundreds of memorable characters. Without Jonathan Winters there would be no improvisational comedy as we know it today. Without Winters there would be no Robin Williams. Indeed, one was so inspired by the other that Winters was introduced to millions of new fans in 1981 as the son of Robin Williams’ goofball alien in the final season of ABC’s ‘Mork and Mindy.’
Winters died of natural causes at his home in California.
He was so marvelously quick-witted that it was almost impossible to catch all of his jokes the first time around. He penchant for creating humor in his natural surroundings -- literally out of thin air -- was legendary. Much of it was done with a grab bag of eccentric personalities and facial expressions. But characters such as the dirty old lady Maude Frickert were based on people Winters actually knew growing up in Ohio.
In the mid-1950s, ‘The Jonathan Winters Show’ pioneered the then-new videotape technology to do stunts where he showed up as two characters on screen together.
Here now are some priceless pieces from the Great Mr. Winters: