Kid, The

The showbiz nickname of former child actor Jackie Coogan who starred as Uncle Fester Frump on the bizarre sitcom THE ADDAMS FAMILY/ABC/1964-66.


Coogan got his nickname from the title of the silent movie The Kid released in 1921 starring Charlie Chaplin as a tramp who adopts a small child (Jackie Coogan), learns to love him and them gives “The Kid” up for his own good.

Other TV programs using the nickname “Kid/The Kid” included:

  • On the adventure THE FALL GUY/ABC/1981-86 stuntman Colt Seavers (Lee Majors) called his business manager and aspiring stuntman Howie Munsen (Douglas Barr) “Kid.”
  • On the comedy adventure B.J. & THE BEAR/NBC/1979-81, a four-year-old chimpanzee named Bear (a.k.a. “The Kid”) traveled with Billie Joe “”BJ” McCay (Greg Evigan), a young Vietnam veteran trucker who plied his trade by driving a red and white rig across the country.
  • And on the short-lived sitcom DOUBLE RUSH/CBS/1995 elderly actor Phil Leeds played “The Kid,” a slow-moving, 75-year-old messenger who knew every shortcut in Manhattan (after 58 years of practice).

Note: When Jackie Coogan’s parents were killed in a car crash, all the money he had earned as a child actor was held captive in a major lawsuit. Consequently, the California State Legislature enacted the Child Actors’ Bill (a.k.a. “The Coogan Act”) to prevent such future abuses to children in show business.

Jackie Coogan died from cardiac arrest on March 1, 1984, in Santa Monica Hospital. He was sixty-nine.



Born in Philadelphia, Jerome Alphonse Holst worked 30 years as a librarian. He has since retired and lives in Greensboro, North Carolina. Mr. Holst is also the author of the children’s books “Norman the Troll,” "Norman the Troll and the Haunted House," and "Gretchen and the Gremlins." In addition, he penned the fantasy novel “The Adventures of Glinda Gale,” a retelling of “The Wizard of Oz" and the reference text “The Encyclopedia of Movie and TV Insults.” .

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Posted in Showbiz Nicknames

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