RIP: Joe Franklin

The still hard-working talk show pioneer was 88

How do you properly pay tribute to a New York TV talk show pioneer? For starters, you tell it like it was.

Here’s the lede sentence from James Barron’s New York Times obit:

Joe Franklin, who became a New York institution by presiding over one of the most compellingly low-rent television programs in history, one that even he acknowledged was an oddly long-running parade of has-beens and yet-to-bes interrupted from time to time by surprisingly famous guests, died on Saturday in a hospice in Manhattan.

Another worthy, respectful angle is to remind just how much Franklin loved to do what he did. From the top of the obituary by Andreas Preuss:

“The last two weeks were the first time he ever missed a broadcast in over 60 years” friend and former producer Steve Garrin said.

Franklin, a veteran of WJZ-TV, WOR-TV and most recently the Bloomberg Radio Network’s Bloomberg on the Weekend, was 88. The cause of death was cancer. RIP.