RIP Follow That Bird Star Joe Flaherty

Published: April 2, 2024
Categories: News

ToughPigs is saddened to learn that actor, writer, and comedian Joe Flaherty has passed away at the age of 82.

A veteran of the Second City theater troupe, Flaherty broke into television with SCTV, where he was one of the show’s longest-serving cast members and writers from 1976 to 1984. There, he brought life such memorable characters as horror host Count Floyd, the scummy TV network owner Guy Caballero, and schmaltzy entertainer Sammy Maudlin. He would also appear in such shows as Married… with Children, Freaks and Geeks, and The King of Queens, and films which included Back to the Future Part II and Happy Gilmore.

Flaherty was one of multiple SCTV alumni that appeared in Sesame Street Presents: Follow that Bird, playing Sid Sleaze, of the nefarious Sleaze Brothers. The more naïve and emotional of the two, Sid is actually moved to tears during Big Bird’s performance of “I’m So Blue,” and later bursts out crying when they’re finally caught by the police, which you can see in the video below.

But that wouldn’t be Flaherty’s only work in the creative worlds of Jim Henson. Several years later, he would provide the voice of The Chief Elder in two episodes of Dinosaurs, “Green Card” and “Working Girl.”

Whether he was a sleazy politician or just a Sleaze brother, Joe Flaherty offered plenty of laughs as he provided the tears.

Click here to help us remember Joe Flaherty on the ToughPigs Discord!

by Matthew Soberman –


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