George Gobel was a comic with distinctive sad-eyes and a flattop haircut whose battles with his television wife, "Spooky Old Alice," added a dimension to domestic warfare in the 1950s.
His underplayed, deadpan humor stood in contrast to the other TV comics of the day — such frenetic entertainers as Milton Berle and Red Skelton.
Gobel's career began when he was 11, singing as "Little George Gobel" on radio's "The National Barn Dance." He next became "Lonesome George," singer of sad cowboy ballads, in which he would pick at his guitar while pining for lost loves, or evenings on the prairie.
But his flair as a short teller of tall tales, kept him at, or near, the top of the ratings throughout the 1954-60 run of "The George Gobel Show."
The NBC show, which won him an Emmy in 1955, started with an opening monologue, a sketch or song by a guest star.