How A Pathological Fear Of Germs, A Bubble Bath, And A Stripper Helped Launch Howie Mandel’s Career

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Comedian Howie Mandel has been around long enough now that how he’s best known varies by generation. Most people know him best these days as host of Deal or No Deal or as a judge on America’s Got Talent. In the 1990s, however, Mandel was probably best known for his long-running cartoon Bobby’s World, although older folks may know Mandel for his stand-up comedy from the 1980s featuring that same Bobby character. In the same decade, Mandel also starred for six seasons in the critically acclaimed St. Elsewhere. Though many don’t realize it, Mandel also provided the voices for Gizmo in the Gremlins movies and Beeker (among other characters) in early seasons of Muppet Babies.

However, the signature bit that originally launched Mandel to fame as a stand-up comedian was his rubber glove trick, where he would pull a latex glove over his head and blow it up with his nose (a trick he performed so often he had to give it up after he perforated his sinus). Here he is showing Ted Danson his rubber glove trick back in 1986.

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