The celebration of 50 years of ‘Happy Saturdays’, which began last Saturday with the tribute gala to its comedians, is a very special moment for Colombian television.
It means a journey through laughter that has been an incentive in a country full of pain and contradictions. Always, without fail, the Caracol space has been there, through thick and thin, allowing viewers to have a break.
His campaigns have been famous, such as ‘Carry a little school in your heart’; his joke-telling, his parodies (unbeatable ‘Pasión de gavilleros’ imitating ‘Pasión de gavilanes’) and his studio sessions with the public.
Through these five decades, since it began as ‘Champions of laughter’, it has been fundamental on the screen and most of its comedians have become extended family to many Colombians.
Today we pay tribute to some of their comedians.
Don Hugo Patino
He is the only surviving humorist of the old generation. Known as the Prince of Marulanda, one of the most famous imitations of him was that of Father Rafael García Herreros. He also did the Bobo Anselmo parody. Don Hugo is still strong and in force. He is 92 years old today and although he does not move that easily, he is always ready for humor.
Born in Cali in 1938, he died in the same city in 2018. Among his most remembered characters is the Doctor Screencandidate for the Presidency for the Patriotic Resignation party in 1982.
She is, without a doubt, the most beloved comedian among viewers and also among her peers. She is like the great mom of the cast and both the oldest and the youngest see her as someone close. She is the sense of her love with her husband, Moth, also a comedian. La Gordita has gone through difficult moments of health that she has overcome, to the joy of the fanatical country for Happy Saturdays.
The actress, who was part of the Gomez dynasty, with her mother, Chela del Río, and her sister, Gloria Gómez, spent many years on ‘Happy Saturdays’ as a fundamental part of the female humor of the program. Her art was also in productions such as ‘San Tropel’, ‘Tentaciones’ and ‘Fathers and children’. She died in April 2020, in the midst of a pandemic, while undergoing surgery.
The ‘Mocho’ Sanchez
Remembered for his characters Inspector Ruanini and Cleofe, also became famous for his parodies of Cantinflas. He was also a musician and librettist. He was born into a very humble family in the La Perseverancia neighborhood of Bogotá, and was a drummer and serenade singer in his youth. He died in 2005.
The great Topolino was named like that by his program partners, alluding to a car that arrived in Colombia and became famous for being very small and cheap. In addition to being a comedian and representing very popular characters on the show, he worked as a journalist. He passed away in June of last year. and spent 17 years in Happy Saturdays.
Famous for his phrase: ‘Go, Didn’t I meet you in Palmyra?’where he was from, the remembered Skinny Agudelo He was one of the show’s great comedians. His character of Jaimito, a boy dressed as a sailor, irreverent and questioning, was followed by many every week. He died on December 21, 2009.
On May 27 of last year, of covid-19, he died Marcelino Rodriguez, known as Mandíbula, another of the beloved comedians of “Happy Saturdays” and his fans. Famous for his ugly portrayals, he was Truhán Reyes in the parody ‘Pasión de gavilleros’ (‘Passion of hawks’). In 2012 he was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s.
Barbarita, the gossipy lady
The comedian, singer and musician César Corredor made Barbarita his great character. The gossip lady from the Galerías neighborhood has transcended the years and the trends of humor, and continues around the world with her red coat, her white wig and her firm intention of speaking ill of others because, as she says, “they allow it, they give reasons”.
Humberto Martínez Salcedo, the Salustiano Master
Actor, journalist, humorist and film director, Humberto Martínez Salcedo was one of the most important personalities on Colombian radio and television, as well as in cinema. Born in Bucaramanga in 1932, he died in Boyacá, in 1986, after an illness that affected him in his last years. His character, Maestro Salustiano Tapías, who explained life situations with humor and wisdom, continues to be one of the symbols of Happy Saturdays.
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