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Senator Beauregard Claghorn

Andrew Gelman sorts things into categories. One of his categories is called "Foghorn Leghorn," defined as a parody that is more famous than the original. Many of the old Warners Brothers cartoons fall into this category, as they parodied stars, slang, and news of the day which are passé, while the cartoons live on. But why Foghorn Leghorn? The Warner Brothers rooster was a parody of Senator Beauregard Claghorn, a radio character on The Fred Allen Show played by Kenny Delmar.

Claghorn had an unshakable obsession with the South, and would proudly voice his disdain for the North in humorous ways. For instance, the Senator refused to ever wear a "Union suit" or drive through the Lincoln Tunnel when he visited New York City, and he claimed to drink only out of Dixie cups. The Senator even rebuked Allen for saying the word "no" in his presence, saying "N-O.. That's North abbreviated!!"

(YouTube link)

Delmar, as Claghorn, starred in the 1947 movie It's a Joke, Son! which featured the above clip. The entire movie is available at YouTube. Later in his career, Delmar found that Warner Brothers had copyrighted Foghorn Leghorn, and he had to get their permission to perform as his Claghorn character.  -via Metafilter


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