Billy Mays, Dead at 50

In MemoriumBilly Mays was 50. He was the burly, bearded television pitchman known for his boisterous hawking of products such as Orange Glo and OxiClean.

When I read that Billy Mays had passed away, I asked myself a simple question. Who's Billy Mays? I hit up YouTube and didn't recognize his face or voice at all. Furthermore, I had never heard of Orange Glo or OxiClean. I figured if I had never heard of Billy Mays, he was most likely too minor a celebrity to warrant an entry.

I tweeted that I hadn't heard of Billy Mays and quickly got this reply from @SimonOstler, Assignment Editor & Producer at Global Edmonton.

@torontomike you've never come home late, sat down on the couch surfed through channels and seen Billy Mays. He is the MJ of infomercials.

I figured the MJ of infomercials was worthy of an entry, even if I had never heard of him. Further validation was this very recent appearance on The Tonight Show with Conan O'Brien, an episode I've PVR'd but not yet seen.


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Down Goes Brown

I didn't know who he was either. But we must be in the minority, since CNN apparently felt it was worth sending an e-mail alert about him.

June 28, 2009 @ 3:33 PM

Toronto Mike

People are putting Billy Mays in the Ed McMahon / Farrah Fawcett / Michael Jackson category.

Billy Mays' PR guy is the true star here.

June 28, 2009 @ 3:42 PM

The_Voice

Billy Mays *should* be more recognizeable than that Schlomo from the Slap Chop and Sham-wow ads.

June 28, 2009 @ 3:52 PM

Toronto Mike

Billy Mays never beat up a hooker. Now that gets you noticed, even to those of us allergic to infomercials.

http://www.thesmokinggun.com/archive/years/2009/0327092sham1.html

June 28, 2009 @ 4:01 PM

bkblades

I know of Billy Mays, but I knew more about him through the various dubbing parodies.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r_4a4O7kXQo

June 28, 2009 @ 6:31 PM


Charles

Wow this is too sad. I love watching Billy work his magic on the screen. Guess Pitchmen is canceled now? :(

June 28, 2009 @ 8:18 PM

Ajlouny

It's highly suspect that he would die after being knocked on the head by falling baggage. My heart goes out to his wife and family. R.I.P Billy.

June 28, 2009 @ 9:38 PM

tp bandit

Billy Mays will probably become more popular by association with all the other celebs that died this week

June 29, 2009 @ 1:10 AM

Andrew

I just don't know why he was always yelling.

June 29, 2009 @ 8:25 AM

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