Home Television Comedy Alan Young Show, The

Alan Young Show, The

1 9 5 0 – 1 9 5 3 (USA)

In 1950, when network television was still in its infancy in the US and radio ruled supreme as America’s favourite home entertainment medium, a young Canadian comedian named Alan Young was recruited by the CBS network to appear on a new half-hour weekly television series.

TV Guide magazine described the young comedian as “the Charlie Chaplin of television”, and other entertainment critics also applauded his intelligent and gentle humour.


On the show, Young played a good-natured, even-tempered, gentle character who usually ended up becoming involved in one funny predicament after another in the show’s variety sketches.

At the beginning of each show, Young would perform a short monologue, which was followed by songs by various vocalists and two skits. Appearing on the show regularly with Young was actress Dawn Addams, who usually played his girlfriend.

Gradually the format of the show changed from comedy/variety to situation comedy.

In spite of Young’s formidable talents as an actor/comedian, The Alan Young Show was cancelled as CBS, like the other two major networks, endlessly searched for new programmes to satisfy their ever-increasing television-viewing audience.

Young would go on to fame and fortune as the human co-star of television’s most famous talking horse in Mr Ed.