Former ‘AGT’ Host, TV Icon Jerry Springer Dead at 79
One of the biggest names in television history, Jerry Springer, has unfortunately passed away. TMZ confirmed his death on Thursday, April 27. He had just turned 79 years old in February of this year.
According to TMZ, a family spokesperson says the TV mogul was diagnosed with cancer a few months ago, and this week he took a turn for the worse. He reportedly passed away at his home in the Chicago area. He is survived by his daughter Katie Springer and his sister Evelyn.
Jerry Springer Passes Away At 79
Springer was most notable for hosting his syndicated talk show The Jerry Springer Show for nearly 27 years. The talk show was an absolute hit, and even paved the way for the modern talk show format. Ahead of his time on TV, Springer was a widely known politician. He ran for U.S. Congress in 1970 (failed), then was elected to Cincinnati’s City Council in 1971. Later he served one term as Cincinnati’s mayor in 1977.
Outside of his own show, Springer appeared as the host of America’s Got Talent Seasons two (2007) and three (2008), as a contestant on Dancing With the Stars Season three (2006), and The Masked Singer as Beetle on Season 8 (2022).
The Masked Singer was his most recent TV appearance. For those who may have missed the season, Springer’s time on the series was short, yet sweet. Last fall, he appeared as the character “Beetle,” singing “The Way You Look Tonight” by Frank Sinatra in week 5 of auditions. Robin Thicke and Jenny McCarthy were able to guess the TV icon’s identity correct on the show.
Jerry Springer as The Host of America’s Got Talent
In the talent show world, many remember Springer during his short stint on America’s Got Talent, since it was a questionable move for him. Springer hailed to the stage following the show’s original host Regis Philbin. Due to the show’s family friendly atmosphere, many were confused on AGT hiring Springer. Ultimately, it seemed like Springer was hired due to popularity in the beginning.
After 15 years of The Jerry Springer Show, transitioning to AGT made sense for Springer. By the time America’s Got Talent entered its second season, the America that embraced Regis Philbin had begun turning into an America that welcomed guilty pleasure T.V. Springer was already the leader of the pack when it came to guilty pleasure, in fact he ushered in the era over a decade before.
Without Springer on AGT, it series may not have seen the success it currently has. Although he didn’t introduce anything crazy like the Golden Buzzer, he set a precedent on what a good AGT host is. For that, he will always be remembered.