Jackie Mason, the sometimes controversial comedian who unapologetically embraced Jewish issues and political incorrectness, died Saturday in Manhattan. Hey 93.
The New York Times He said his death was confirmed by his friend Raoul Felder.
The comedian achieved a national profile through a series of hit Broadway solo shows without substantial film or television work.
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Mason was one of the last of the Borscht Belt comedians, and he linked that sensitivity to strong views on racial and ethnic politics.
He also resorted to The Simpsons as the voice of Rabbi Hyman Krustofsky, the father of Krusty the Clown, winning his second Emmy for his efforts in 1992 and more recently for voicing the character in a 2014 episode. He also appeared as himself in a 2007 episode of 30 skirt.
On the 2004 television special ‘Comedy Central Presents: 100 Greatest Stand-Ups of All Time’, he was ranked No. 63.
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The comic received a 1987 special Tony Award for his successful solo effort ‘The World According to Me! by Jackie Mason! ‘, which had 573 performances. (He received an Emmy for writing the show after it aired on television in 1988.)
He had supporting roles in a few other movies, including Steve Martin vehicle The jerk and Mel Brooks’ The History of the World: Part I..
On television he starred in the short sitcom 1989 Chicken Soup and hosted 1992 The Jackie Mason Show, which saw panelists address the issues of the day with irreverence in a way that made the show a precursor to Bill Maher’s Politically incorrect, which premiered the following year. (Comedy Central, which hosted Maher’s show, was unhappy, however, when Mason came out with his 1994 one-man show ‘Jackie Mason: Politically Incorrect’ and sued the comic, trying unsuccessfully to force a name change.)
Jacob Moshe Maza was born in Sheboygan, Wisconsin, but grew up on the Lower East Side of Manhattan. He was ordained a rabbi, there were many in his family, but he eventually resigned his position in a synagogue to become a comedian.
He brought an early version of his insult-laden humor to a Borscht Belt hotel in the mid-1950s, but audiences weren’t prepared for the kind of comedy Don Rickles would make more palatable later.
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Mason made several appearances in The Ed Sullivan Show during the 1960s, but his relationship with Sullivan soured due to Mason possibly pointing out Sullivan at him during a show; Mason sued Sullivan for libel and won, and the publicity helped his career at the time. Throughout the decade, he also appeared repeatedly in The Joey Bishop Show other The Merv Griffin Show, among others.
He made his Broadway debut in 1969 with the play “A Teaspoon Every Four Hours,” which he co-wrote. It ran in previews for 97 presentations, but when opened it closed after a single exit.
His career takes a step forward with his first solo Broadway work, ‘The World According to Me! From Jackie Mason ‘, in 1986.
Mason is survived by his wife, Jyll Rosenfeld, whom he married in 1991, and a daughter.
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