LOS ANGELES - Rodney Dangerfield (news), the bug-eyed comic whose self-deprecating one-liners brought him stardom in clubs, television and movies and made his lament "I don't get no respect" a catchphrase, died Tuesday. He was 82.
Dangerfield, who fell into a coma after undergoing heart surgery, died at 1:20 p.m., said publicist Kevin Sasaki. Dangerfield had a heart valve replaced Aug. 25 at the University of California, Los Angeles, Medical Center.
Sasaki said in a statement that Dangerfield suffered a small stroke after the operation and developed infectious and abdominal complications. But in the past week he had emerged from the coma, the publicist said.
Clad in a black suit, red tie and white shirt with collar that seemed too tight, Dangerfield convulsed audiences with lines such as: "When I was born, I was so ugly that the doctor slapped my mother," "When I started in show business, I played one club that was so far out my act was reviewed in Field and Stream," and "Every time I get in an elevator, the operator says the same thing to me: `Basement?'"
In a 1986 interview, he explained the origin of his "respect" trademark:
"I had this joke: `I played hide and seek; they wouldn't even look for me.' To make it work better, you look for something to put in front of it: I was so poor, I was so dumb, so this, so that. I thought, `Now what fits that joke?' Well, `No one liked me' was all right. But then I thought, a more profound thing would be, `I get no respect.'"
Dangerfield is survived by his wife, Joan, and two children from a previous marriage.
-one of those "bad" Williams fans that everyone keeps talking about
OFFICIAL BLACKSMITH OF THE ROYAL COURT
I don't mind straight people as long as they act gay in public!
Well, I walk into the room
Passing out hundred dollar bills
And it kills and it thrills like the horns on my Silverado grill
And I buy the bar a double round of crown
And everybody's getting down
And this town ain't never gonna be the same.
Cause I saddle up my horse and I ride into the city
I make a lot of noise
Cause the girls, they are so pretty...
"My coach told me I had to expect, you know, some long rallies and stuff. So, you know, I was ready for this."
--Amelie Mauresmo breaking down the intricate nature of Team Mauresmo coaching strategies.