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Kenny wasn't like the other kids
November 16, 2009 7:11 PM   Subscribe


 
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The period is kind of appropriate since old TV screens used to turn black and disappear with a small white dot in the middle.
posted by Frank Grimes at 7:15 PM on November 16, 2009 [3 favorites]


(when you pressed off on the remote control)
posted by Frank Grimes at 7:17 PM on November 16, 2009


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That's really a shame; he was a very talented host and Remote Control was good fun.

News of his passing takes me back to a time way in high school when MTV had plenty to offer -- 120 Minutes, IRS' The Cutting Edge, and reruns of The Young Ones made for great Sunday night entertainment. Although it was fun to get fired up with Dead Kennedys' "MTV Get Off The Air" ("You've turned rock & roll rebellion into Pat Boone sedation/Making sure nothing's left to the imagination" GRAR GRAR), even a curmudgeon teenage punker like me found lots to like.
posted by porn in the woods at 7:25 PM on November 16, 2009


I wasted a lot of time watching Remote Control. I have no regrets.

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posted by Sailormom at 7:26 PM on November 16, 2009


I was on Remote Control. I am sad. RIP, Ken.
posted by pinky at 7:31 PM on November 16, 2009


I was really saddened by this, despite the fact that I hadn't seen Ober in anything significant in decades. He was in a few Blues Traveler videos, as cameos, and I'd be like "Hey, there's that guy..."

Ober's enthusiasm was infectious, and more importantly, Remote Control came at the last time, IMO, that MTV felt slightly "dangerous," as if your mother would be disappointed in you. The obits note that Adam Sandler, Colin Quinn and Denis Leary all appeared on the show. There were the little throwaway bits, like "playing baseball cards with LL Cool J." And of course I had a crush on Kari Wuhrer...

See ya' around, Ken.
posted by Cool Papa Bell at 7:33 PM on November 16, 2009 [2 favorites]


Ah, too bad. I remember him as the host of one of my favorite ever TV game shows, the also tragically-short-lived Smush.
posted by O Blitiri at 7:35 PM on November 16, 2009


Nah na na nah, nah na na nah! GOOOooood-bye!
posted by CarlRossi at 7:37 PM on November 16, 2009


Snack break!
posted by The Deej at 7:40 PM on November 16, 2009


Crud. Someone please check on Kevin Seal. Just to be sure.
posted by schoolgirl report at 7:41 PM on November 16, 2009


Ken Ober: Dead, Alive, or Indian Food?
posted by zeugitai_guy at 7:42 PM on November 16, 2009 [2 favorites]


kenny wasn't like the other kids.

TV mattered. nothing else did.
posted by Hammond Rye at 7:51 PM on November 16, 2009 [2 favorites]


Kari Wuhrer, so pretteh
posted by leotrotsky at 7:53 PM on November 16, 2009


I guess we have the answer to "Dead or Canadian?" now.

RIP, Ken. My teenage self loved the show and nearly wore out the PC game.
posted by Flannery Culp at 7:59 PM on November 16, 2009 [2 favorites]


Producing for Carlos Mencia?

Died of shame, I bet.
posted by mr_crash_davis mark II: Jazz Odyssey at 8:09 PM on November 16, 2009


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It's a shame he never made it big like the people he helped introduce, but at least it sounds like he still did ok. I keep wondering if they'll ever release those shows on DVD or online or something, they were more fun than the typical money grubbing game shows.
posted by inthe80s at 8:10 PM on November 16, 2009


I hadn't thought about Ken Ober in many years, but after seeing this and rthe eminders of some of the catch phrases and in-jokes I suddenly remember how incredibly likable he was. He was the perfect guy to host an MTV game show at the time. I looked forward to that show mostly because of him.
posted by Slack-a-gogo at 8:19 PM on November 16, 2009


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posted by Joe Beese at 8:24 PM on November 16, 2009


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posted by khaibit at 8:25 PM on November 16, 2009


Damn - just seeing that intro again brings back a lot of memories! Now I'm even more bummed.
posted by Slack-a-gogo at 8:26 PM on November 16, 2009


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posted by VulcanMike at 8:27 PM on November 16, 2009


I was on Remote Control. I am sad. RIP, Ken.
posted by pinky at 7:31 PM


Really? That's awesome. Did you win?
posted by hifiparasol at 8:35 PM on November 16, 2009


I hadn't thought about Ken Ober in many years, but after seeing this and rthe eminders of some of the catch phrases and in-jokes I suddenly remember how incredibly likable he was.

I hadn't thought about Ken Ober in many years, but after seeing this and the reminders of some of the catch phrases and in-jokes I suddenly realize that I've been unwittingly wasting my life by leveraging my interests and thought patterns to optimize my chances for success on a game show that went off the air 10 years ago.
posted by dirtdirt at 8:38 PM on November 16, 2009 [1 favorite]


That '10' really is a typo. Really.
posted by dirtdirt at 8:39 PM on November 16, 2009


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Back when MTV was still full of Pure Awesome. Sing Along With Colin would make anyone howl with laughter.
posted by mark242 at 8:42 PM on November 16, 2009


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posted by bakerina at 8:42 PM on November 16, 2009


I just remember one episode when he had three contestants who were so pathetic that he kicked them all off after only ten minutes and got three completely different contestants to finish the show with.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 8:43 PM on November 16, 2009


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posted by strixus at 8:44 PM on November 16, 2009


hifiparasol - I did! The prizes were utter crap, unfortunately (I can tell you how each one of them wore out or died before its time) and they sort of screwed me out of the trip to Mexico. The experience itself was really the prize. It was awesome.
posted by pinky at 8:47 PM on November 16, 2009


EmpressCallipygos: I remember that, too. I think the last straw was that no one could name two bands Eric Clapton was in. The following season, a new category was introduced called "Boy, Were They Stupid," which consisted entirely of questions no one answered correctly.

I loved that show.
posted by Mister Moofoo at 8:57 PM on November 16, 2009


This one hurts.

Though I know utterly nothing about Ken's tenure at MTV, I was a longtime online friend of him and his crew when he hosted a show on the sadly defunct ComedyWorld.com. Spent many hours listening to streams of the show while simultaneously chatting with'em via IRC.
posted by RavinDave at 9:05 PM on November 16, 2009


Mister Moofoo > they couldn't identify a band that Eric Clapton was in. He launched into a huge tirade, was interrupted by his mom for the commercial break, and he just yelled "BUT MOM, THEY'RE SO STUPID!!!!

Then there was the episode where Bob Eubanks appeared. And the episode where LL Cool J, Julie Brown and Weird Al Yankovic were contestants. And the episode where the sports stars played and John Ten Eyck had to play Steve Sax....

I've cried over a celebrity death for the third time now.

Remote Control was a *huge* part of my teenage years. I was 13 when the show started and it was the coolest show ever. I had the PC game, the board game, I watched it every night. They did a tour of college campuses and I wanted to go so badly when I heard they were coming to the University of Rochester. I had such a crush on Ken Ober; he was witty, and cute, and everything I kinda wanted in a boyfriend at that point in my life.

I wore my Shah Safari Remote Control t-shirt on Sunday for the first time in years. A friend of mine saw it and commented about how much she loved the show.

A part of my formative years is dead now, and I am quite sad.
posted by Lucinda at 9:23 PM on November 16, 2009 [4 favorites]


.

...a game show that was put together creatively... there's an extinct media creature. And for years after Remote Control ended, every time Colin Quinn showed up on my screen, I yelled "NOT YOU, I WANT KEN OBER"... *sigh* it was never to be...
posted by oneswellfoop at 9:42 PM on November 16, 2009 [4 favorites]


Hahaha ha ha hahaha ha haha haha ha.

(National Geographic theme performed by Cousin Flip)
posted by sourwookie at 10:37 PM on November 16, 2009


.

Seeing that giant pez dispenser brought it all back.
Who the hell is it? Dick Clark?
posted by Monsters at 11:12 PM on November 16, 2009


Bob Eubanks.
posted by scrowdid at 11:48 PM on November 16, 2009 [1 favorite]


they sort of screwed me out of the trip to Mexico.

Oh, don't leave it there.

Tell the whole story :)
posted by empath at 12:29 AM on November 17, 2009 [1 favorite]


That show scared me a lot as a kid. It was sort of this big monster-under-the-bed thing. When I knew it was on, I'd turn the dial to every channel except for the channel MTV was on, but eventually I'd just have to peek and hope not to see (or maybe to see) a person turning into a skeleton.

And it's not that I thought the skeletons were somehow real. Just the whole mise en scene seemed unsafe, somehow. Very, very dangerous.
posted by roll truck roll at 12:39 AM on November 17, 2009


Remote Control on wikipedia
Ken Ober on imdb
Youtubes: Weird Al Vs. Julie Brown Vs. LL Cool J - part 1, 2, 3. (much more)
posted by Rhomboid at 2:51 AM on November 17, 2009 [1 favorite]


Ah, Remote Control. The last, best thing MTV ever did. Sad news about Ken. It's always a bit unnerving when someone your age just drops dead for no known reason, too.

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posted by Thorzdad at 4:12 AM on November 17, 2009


Since he's not Canadian ...

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posted by kuppajava at 5:17 AM on November 17, 2009


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posted by mikelieman at 5:22 AM on November 17, 2009


Damn. I use that show (and Liquid Television) as my touchstone moments - the point where MTV stopped being edgy and started the long downhill slide. When those two shows went off the air it was the beginning of the end. Of course it might also be the beginning of me growing up, but I like to think otherwise.

RIP, Ken.
posted by caution live frogs at 5:23 AM on November 17, 2009


leotrotsky: "Kari Wuhrer, so pretteh"

But she replaced Marisol!
posted by octothorpe at 5:39 AM on November 17, 2009 [3 favorites]


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posted by jmcmurry at 5:46 AM on November 17, 2009 [1 favorite]


empath - I always wondered if it was a scam - the dates that I could take the trip were so limited as to be undoable. Eventually the travel company crabbily agreed to just give the taxes back and call the whole thing off.
posted by pinky at 6:11 AM on November 17, 2009


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Mr. Ober was responsible for a young teenage me being introduced to Kari Wuhrer at just the right time in my life. I hope he bought some stock in Jergen's when about the time she came on the show.
posted by DigDoug at 6:44 AM on November 17, 2009 [1 favorite]


My favorite thing about Kari Wuhrer was the fact that the producers of Sliders just blatantly replaced the fat dumpy old British guy with a hot big-boobed redhead. That there was some quality pandering.
posted by hifiparasol at 7:22 AM on November 17, 2009 [1 favorite]


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posted by DaddyNewt at 8:02 AM on November 17, 2009


It took me years to realize that Trivia Delinquent became Adam Sandler.

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posted by cereselle at 8:03 AM on November 17, 2009


Sad. I loved Remote Control growing up. It was also the only thing on MTV my dad could sit through, so there was some bonding there.

octothorpe: But she replaced Marisol!

Seriously. Marisol was way cuter than Kari.
posted by mkultra at 8:06 AM on November 17, 2009


Marisol was cute, but I vote for Kari.
posted by mrgrimm at 10:42 AM on November 17, 2009


To hell with Marisol AND Kari... mmmmmmmmDenisLeary.

(sorry, had to go there...)
posted by bitter-girl.com at 12:43 PM on November 17, 2009


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posted by tits mcgee at 4:20 PM on November 17, 2009


Spectacular prizes!
posted by Sys Rq at 5:08 PM on November 17, 2009


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