7 things you may not have known about Svengoolie, as told from his panel at C2E2 2022

The horror host told stories of his overnight success — after 43 years!

He's an overnight success — it just took him 43 years! After a few years of broadcasting from the Sven-cave, Svengoolie was finally able to emerge from his tomb and mingle with fans at the annual Chicago Comics and Entertainment Expo once more!

During the weekend of August 5-7, 2022, Sven signed autographs, took photos, and heard (and told) more than a few bad jokes. As part of his haunting of C2E2, he held a panel where he took questions and told stories of his success, from Chicago to Berwyn —

(All together now...) BERRR-WYN?

— and here's 7 facts you might not have known that came from that panel.

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1. He faced rejection

Sven talked about when the series was first getting off the ground. Of course, as many die-hard Svenpals know, Jerry G. Bishop was the original Svengoolie, but when they had a chance to revive the show after cancellation, Jerry wasn't interested in reprising the role and gave it to Rich Koz with his blessing. However, it wasn't always so easy. "One program director, when I told him what I wanted to do, he laughed and hung up on me," Sven said. "I wonder where he's working now."

2. He doesn't see other horror hosts as competition

"There's room for everybody," Sven said about the recent interest in hosted horror shows. "Our success nationally has made some markets go, oh hey, we can do this."

3. His first horror movie

So what started the life-long passion for horror? "The first horror movie I ever saw was King Kong." The 1933 movie has been ranked by Rotten Tomatoes as the best horror film of all time. The special effects used in the film were groundbreaking at the time. "Part of [the appeal] was the stop-motion animation."

4. The comic legend who was a hand at the door

One of the most iconic parts of Sven's show is the hand at the door at the end, accompanied by a disembodied voice who tells Sven an audience-submitted joke. George Perez, the Marvel and DC comics legend behind The Avengers and Crisis on Infinite Earths was a huge Svengoolie fan and became a close personal friend. He appeared as one of the hands at the door!

5. The sidekick who went out with a bang

Before Kerwyn became Sven's #2, a few different characters came through the dungeon. One of them was Ed the Bat, who spoke in an electronically altered high-pitched voice. One of the MeTV executives found Ed the Bat so annoying that when the choice was made to retire Ed, they decided to send him off memorably. "We shot an ending where he called him into his office and attacked him with a club."

6. The movie he thinks is underrated

What movie does Sven feel doesn't get enough love? "Fiend Without a Face." He's talking about the 1958 British black-and-white movie that you may have seen on Svengoolie before. Sven especially loves the monsters, who are invisible for most of the movie, but when they become visible, they look like — well, we won't spoil it here.

7. The sacrifice that Gilbert Gottfried made for the show

Gilbert Gottfried, who we sadly lost in April of 2022, was a big fan of the show and a personal friend of Sven. He would come and film segments for Svengoolie when he was in town. "He was careful to never say anything that we would need to cut out," Sven said, "which was quite an undertaking for him!"

SEE ALSO: What are these Creature from the Black Lagoon parodies from?

These gill-man monsters showed up in sitcoms, cartoons and classic Eighties movies.

TAKE QUIZ

 
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bagandwallyfan52 10 days ago
https://youtu.be/6GpbY8df3Zo
This Is It theme song from The
Bugs Bunny Show with Bugs Bunny &Daffy Duck.
Ghoulgirl 18 days ago
I grew up in northeastern NC where many of our stations came out of Virginia. We loved Dr.Madblood I think from the Hampton area. My older brother lived in Richmond where The Boeman Body (not sure I spelled that right) hosted Saturday nights. They came on right after SNL which made Saturday nights great! Now my husband of 33 years an I watch Svengoolie on MeTV here in CT every week! I love EVERYTHING about MeTV, sad we lost MeTV2....anyway, LOVE SVENGOOLIE! Keep on ghoulin!
Sylvia1154 28 days ago
Dr. Paul Bearer in Tampa, FL when I was a kid.
Dr Paul Bearer was also the
Host of Shock Theater WGHP
Channel 8 in High Point North Carolina and I also watched
Bowman Body (Bill Bowman )
was the host of Shock Theater
In ch 8 WXEX in Petersburg VA.
L 1 month ago
Boston had Simon Sigtorum. We also had Creature Feature.
WHY does the Japanese have such a fondness for Godzilla?
Barnbaby L 19 days ago
Oh, man, I love the Godzilla films, at least the older ones. Maybe because I was stationed in Japan for 3 years ? Hmm.....
MPAFUZZY 1 month ago
Pittsburgh, PA had Chilly Billy
RobertSzymanski 1 month ago
Say, I live in Northern California. I have SuddenLink now, Optimum...Humboldt County. How do I..or will we still get yer show Svengoolie? I was a kid in the 1960's and grew up watching in Southern California, Jeepers Creepers, Chiller, Seymour ( who I personally met in Knotts Berry Farm in Buena Park), Moona Lisa Clark, Arach, Grimsley and Elvira! I sent a letter to Seymour and he read it! I asked for a tape copy of his Spooky Theremin theme music and said he couldn't pronounced my polack name! My parents laughed.....
Zip 1 month ago
When I was living in Rockford, IL, there was a horror host that I would watch but I can't remember his name. All I remember is that he was tall, lean, and just kind of low key. Kind of creepy, but that was the point.
Nala92129 Zip 1 month ago
Seymour?
scott 1 month ago
Also; Elvira was the 1st Ghoul Host with humor, eye rolling and sarcasm (I think). Props to her for coming out last year.
Well done, Mistress of the Dark! ❤️
scott 1 month ago
In Cincinnati we had “Creature Feature, but I don’t recall the ghoulish host. But I always watched and was scared of Dr. Frankenstein’s creation. Which made me watch it again and again!
zman47240 scott 1 month ago
The host was the Cool Ghoul.
Sylvia1154 scott 28 days ago
I think it was Dr. Paul Bearer. That’s who hosted the Creature Feature show in FLA when I was a kid
Tasha2003 1 month ago
We used to have Uncle Ted’s Ghoul School which was a show here in the Wilkes Barre/Scranton PA market back in the 70’s every Friday night at 1130. Uncle Ted used to play old horror movies and have comic sketches in between commercial breaks. It was groundbreaking TV and very entertaining.
sammyjomama 1 month ago
my earliest memory of watching the original pops svengoolie was the movie wasp woman, where a woman turns into a homicidal maniac insect through science in order to keep herself young. that movie was hilarious! 2nd most memorable was the 3D movie with svengoolie jr., where we had to buy the special glasses at gas stations and certain retail establishments to watch creature from the black lagoon. it was a bust. sure we were disappointed, but i can see now that the event (and it really was big) really brought the city together in a sort of shared grief. 😆 we treasure our horror show, and host as well, and i’m very excited that we can share him with the world. ❤️
PTMER 1 month ago
In the Los Angeles, CA., area, in the early 1960s, we had a scary, horror movie host, named Jeepers Creepers, on late Saturday nights. He had a ghoulfriend, named Ghoulita and used a lot Shtick that Sven uses.
He even recorded a 45 single, co-written by Frank Zappa, called "Dear Jeepers"...
bdettlingmetv PTMER 1 month ago
Thanks for that info- a little before my time. I recall "Seymour" on I believe KTLA (Channel 5)- remember watching Boris Karlhof's "The Mummy" with Seymour 'wiping in' periodically to deliver a quip. There's a lot of info out there about that host, and I recall quite an outpouring when he passed away.
audie65 1 month ago
I guess WJAR10 is part of Sinclair broadcasting as is Chargetv. So they are dropping METV to bring in their own network ChargeTV. I hope as I will do-- everyone boycotts it and never turn it on!
sammyjomama audie65 1 month ago
i suffered for years when i moved from chicago and found that local affiliates don’t carry metv. now i stream it through frndlytv.com. thank goodness there’s an option now! costs the same or less than hulu. try streaming. it certainly was a lifesaver for me.
audie65 sammyjomama 1 month ago
Thank you sammy jomama!! Think I will be streaming metv when I figure out how!
TheBennie102103 audie65 19 days ago
I would watch METV on WJAR CH 10.2, they did drop METV on 9/1, so I went out and bought a better OTA antenna and now watch it on METV in Boston on CH 5.2, all is good now :)
charwelsh 1 month ago
Chilly Billy, Host of Chiller Theatre, in Pittsburgh, PA was the best! On the air from 1963 to 1984.
audie65 1 month ago
Thank you Dave for expressing your feeling of loss. Sounds like we are in the same boat. Think this is going to be a bigger issue for WJAR10 than they think. People are pissed!!! Thanks for your Dave and loveMETV22 and everyone else for your suggestions and support in this heartbreaking situation.!
sammyjomama audie65 1 month ago
stream metv through frndlytv.com.
nightshade 1 month ago
I remember the Chicago sven for one show.... it was 82 and Xmas was on a Saturday.... and what did they play? "whatever happened to rosemary's baby" .....
nightshade nightshade 1 month ago
oh my first experience was sammy terry on ch wttv 4 in Indiana
bre003 1 month ago
Like Sven but my favorite was "The Ghoul" channel 50 then Sir Graves Ghastly.
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