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Sunday, May 8, 2011
The Death Of Count Shockula to the Birth of Dr. Paul Bearer: The Man in the Hearse.
The Man on the hearse Part One of Three: The Death of Count Shockula to the Birth of Dr. Paul Bearer
By: John Kern
Dick Bennick aka Dr. Paul Bearer, aka Count Shockula
November 3, 1928 - February 18, 1995
Dick started as radio disc jockey in 1949 in North Carolina. During that time he was the top-rated disc jockey for many years and he went onto do his first TV-show in 1960s. The show was called Shock Thearter. The first characters Dick created for the TV station was named Count Shockula. The first Show aired on WGHP TV channel 8 in 1966. Dick had been on the air for a few weeks, when Dick was featured in Famous Monsters of Filmland issue # 45 July 1967. No one was noticing Count Shockula and Dick felt the show was in trouble
Dick got the TV station to let him run a promotion called “how do you kill Count Shockula”. And Dick knew a magic trick where it looked like you were nailing a stake in someone’s heart. Six weeks later someone finally wrote in and said nail a stake through his heart. This is what Dick was hoping and he used his magic tick to kill off Count Shockula. Dick created new character named character Dr. Paul Bearer to help him with the trick. Dr, Paul Bearer showed up on Shock Theatre and killed Count Shockula. And Dr. Paul Bearer took over show.
The show came up with good rating with new host. Dr. Paul Bearer. And the show was on air about six and half year even after Dick left the TV station. Dick went freelance and Dick then moved to Florida in 1971. Dick brought character Dr. Paul Bearer and the show props with him to Florida. While Dick was in Florida, he work in sales for a radio station Dick looked for a TV station for a new show for his character to host. However it took some time to find a new show.
To be continued next month…..
As Dr Paul Bearer would say at the end of his show, “I’ll be lurking for you.”
An ad from when Count Schockula hosted Shock Thearter.
This ia another ad but this ad is for Dr. Paul Bearer.