Rip Taylor, comic and TV host, dead at 84, publicist says

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Rip Taylor, the zany comedian who was a television and nightclub mainstay for over six decades, has died, according to his publicist.

Taylor was hospitalized at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles in the intensive care unit after suffering a seizure last week, Boll said.

Taylor brought his talents to Broadway, as well, touring in productions like Peter Pan and Oliver.

Rip Taylor was a popular comic known for his outrageous personality. "In desperation, I pretended to cry as I begged them to laugh". The world never really had a problem laughing at the comedian who, per NPR, became known for his "outrageous antics" and "flamboyant style", with a penchant for tossing scraps of papers around in his wake-earning him a second nickname, the "King of Confetti".

He served in the Korean War and started his comedy career in the United States army, performing stand-up in clubs and restaurants, initially with gags he stole from entertainers who played for the troops.

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Success begat more success, and Taylor ended up on tour with Judy Garland and Eleanor Powell in Las Vegas in 1966.

In the 1970s, Taylor hosted The $1.98 Beauty Show. He appeared on The Gong Show, Hollywood Squares, The Joey Bishop Show, Match Game, The Merv Griffin Show and Password.

With his bushy blond toupee, exaggerated eyebrows and walrus-like mustache, Mr. Taylor was a striking presence.

His voice was featured on "Scooby-Doo", "The Addams Family", and "The Jetsons". Mr. Taylor also wrote and performed an autobiographical one-man play called "It Ain't All Confetti". "I knocked over his desk, walked up the aisle, went to Sardi's and said, 'Well, that's the end of my television career.' I went home that night".

Taylor was survived by his longtime partner, Robert Fortney. In lieu of flowers, they ask that donations be made to the Thalians, a charitable organization that Taylor supported that is dedicated to mental health issues.

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