It’s Halloween month at Balladeer’s Blog! Rich Koz, the Babe Ruth of Movie Hosts, portrayed his comedic vampire character as Son of Svengoolie from 1979 to 1986, then again on his new show The Koz Zone in 1989 and 1990 before returning in 1995 as just plain Svengoolie. Along with The Texas 27 Film Vault, Koz’s original run was the closest in spirit to the later program MST3K than any of the other early Movie Host shows when it came to the “so bad it’s good” aesthetic.
Here are some of Sven’s fun song parodies adjusted to fit various psychotronic films presented on his show.
HIT THE ROAD, DRAC (To the tune of Hit the Road, Jack)
BOOGIE WOOGIE BOOGEYMAN OF BERWYN (To the tune of Boogie Woogie Bugle Man)Continue reading →
Rich Koz aka Son of Svengoolie, aka just plain Svengoolie is, in my opinion, the one man whose work would go into a time capsule if I had to pick just one example of the American folk-art form of movie hosting. I know he wasn’t around before Vampira or Zacherle but his work is pretty much the Gold Standard when it comes to those wonderful old local and/or syndicated movie host shows of the past.
As Son of Svengoolie, Rich Koz was the official “inheritor” of Jerry Bishop’s original Svengoolie, the Hippie Vampire, who starred on Chicago’s Screaming Yellow Theater in the very early 70’s. With Bishop’s blessing, (and Bishop even did the very first voice-over introduction for his succesor’s new show) Koz debuted as “Son Of Svengoolie” in the Windy City in 1979. The show won multiple Continue reading →
Yes, it’s another quick look at Rich Koz, star and writer of the Son of Svengoolie show from 1979-1986, later known as just plain Svengoolie like his predecessor Jerry Bishop. That second show was launched in 1995 and is still on the air. This glimpse at the work of the Babe Ruth of movie hosts deals with the schlocker Track of the Vampire. Sven does a sketch and a song parody about Continue reading →
For more bits from Rich Koz, the Babe Ruth of the old-time movie hosts, let’s move to his (and his predecessor’s) running jokes about Berwyn, a Polish American community near Chicago. In the 1960’s Cleveland’s late night movie host Ghoulardi poked fun at the Polish suburb of Parma. In the early 1970’s the original Svengoolie used Chicago’s equivalent of Parma, Berwyn, as the butt of frequent jokes. The mere mention of the name would prompt the sound byte of a disbelieving voice quipping “BURRRRR-wiiin?” Son of Svengoolie continued the tradition.
Well, from the reaction to the latest of my various posts about Rich Koz AKA Son of Svengoolie (and eventually just plain Svengoolie, like his predecessor) readers are intrigued by the guy. Anybody who likes my Bad Movie reviews will love this guy, whose show Son of Svengoolie (1979-1986) was, in my opinion, the funniest of the old-school movie host programs. I never got to see the original shows, but thanks to books and youtube I’ve spent years enjoying “Sven’s” style. Here’s another link to one of his song parodies. Just 2 minutes in length. The occassion was Continue reading →
My fondness for bad movies is no secret and what would bad movies be without America’s movie hosts, those men and women who adopted funny/spooky personas to introduce them to us and make wry, sarcastic remarks about the schlockier ones, especially those superannuated flicks that were all some local channels could afford decades ago. My favorite has always been Chicago’s Rich Koz, better known as Son of Svengoolie and later, just plain Svengoolie. This blog is loaded with references to Rich Koz, the man I consider to be the Aristophanes (just to get pretentious for a moment) of movie hosts. Here are links to some bits about a man who deserves to be known by all bad movie lovers, if only because his influence has been the most extensive and his style the most imitated. Comedy was the key to Koz’s appeal. Here are Continue reading →