Today, we mourn the passing of Jerry Springer, a legendary television personality who made a significant impact on pop culture. To honor his memory, we’ve compiled a list of five intriguing facts about his life.
- Born in a WWII bomb shelter: Jerry Springer entered the world in extraordinary circumstances, as his birth took place in a London subway station being used as a bomb shelter during World War II.
- Family’s escape from Nazi Germany: Springer’s parents were among the fortunate Jews who managed to leave Germany before being sent to concentration camps. However, his grandmother sadly became one of the first victims of the gas chambers.
- A storied political career: Before becoming a household name on television, Springer held political office in Cincinnati, Ohio. He served two terms as mayor, starting at just 33 years old. In 1974, he resigned from the Cincinnati City Council after a scandal involving a check he wrote for a prostitute. Despite this, Springer made a comeback, winning his seat back in 1975 and becoming mayor in 1977. He even made a bid for Ohio Governor in 1982.
- A musical inspired by his show: The Jerry Springer Show became such a cultural phenomenon that it inspired a British musical, titled “Jerry Springer: The Opera.”
- Springer’s critique of his own talk show: Despite its success, Jerry Springer himself admitted that he was not a fan of his show, stating, “I would never watch my show. I’m not interested in it. It’s not aimed towards me. This is just a silly show.”
Bonus fact: Surprisingly, the origins of The Jerry Springer Show can be traced back to a sober, politically-focused discussion program. However, in 1994, the show underwent a transformation to a tabloid-style format in order to improve its lackluster ratings.
As we remember Jerry Springer, it’s important to appreciate the remarkable life he led and the indelible mark he left on our culture.