Mario Kreutzberger, 67, much better known together Don Francisco, speaks during the taping that his TV display Sabado Gigante in Miami in 2008. Alan Diaz / AP
“The finish of era” isn’t simply a slogan belonging come AMC’s foolish Men last season. That applies an ext appropriately come Univision’s Saturday night selection show, Sábado Gigante, which is speak goodbye after 53 years of being on-air, 30 of lock on Univison. Earlier in 1962, the year it began its five decade run, Marilyn Monroe passed away, the brand-new York Yankees to be the World series champs, the United says announced an embargo against Cuba and the audio cassettes to be invented. Yet for many Hispanics over the age of 30, Sábado Gigante stood for not simply a weekend show, it was a member of our family. Come many, the felt together if a group of friends would arrive in ~ your home every Saturday night with indelible merriment, a diversion that permitted many of united state to forget the hardships of daily life. That kind of bond is an extremely hard come let go.

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But due to the fact that we must, here are five things us will miss the most from Sábado Gigante:


1. Don Francisco: back the legendary host is no retiring native television and will continue to contribute to the network top top a range of projects, along with hosting to chat specials, and searching for and also developing new on-air talent for the company, his hosting ability are human being class and also in a league of your own. Spanish-language talent agents and television programmers for years have been looking indefatigably for another Don Francisco and also have every struck out. The distinctive magic Don Francisco, that is 75, is based upon a particular form of humor where he sets girlfriend up for the joke and allows you come organically create the punchline every on her own, something most other hosts recognize of, but can’t rather replicate with the exact same charm or personality. His interviewing skills and improvisational adroitness are human being class, but perhaps, like Frank Sinatra, the has had the gift of longevity, an capacity to adapt to the times and also become, in the end, an worldwide institution. He’s one of a kind, one the they simply don’t make anymore.


Don Francisco, the hold of "Sabado Gigante," watches native the audience together contestants operation a gauntlet of cut cream during a taping that the show's new Years Eve episode in Miami ~ above November 9, 2002.David Friedman / REUTERS

2. El Chacal de la Trompeta: This was arguably the hallmark segment of the show. Six participants willing to song in front of nationwide TV, to be judged on your singing by none various other than by “El Chacal,” a masking costumed character that would use his trumpet to eliminate contestants as soon as they would sing off-key and such. The funnier moment were as soon as the entrants barely opened their mouth and also were automatically disqualified. The winners would win based upon who would acquire the most applause and also ultimately win a modest prize or cash. English-language TV had nothing top top it. The bit, though, didn"t critical as lengthy as the show.

3. Los Niños de Sábado Gigante: This particular segment became one that the much more anticipated components of the display due to the shocking, maturation insights the eight or ripe recurring children. They would all gather about Don Francisco and he would begin asking castle questions around their an individual wishes, their lifestyles and also their weekend plans. Few of the answers would certainly be uproarious while other answers to be at times complete of poignancy, emotion and drama. Nevertheless, it was transfixing to hear to the psychic of young youngsters talk around the world approximately them.

4. Ras Modelos: Lily Estefan, Rachel Diaz, Sissi Fleitas, Claudia Molina are just some of the famous names that acquired their career start on the phase of Sábado Gigante as models, comparable to Vanna White native The Wheel of Fortune. Gift a design for the present was together a coveted title, the it bared comparisons come what the James Bond movie franchise did with its iconic bond Girls. Plenty of of the previously mentioned names walk from gift models come hosting their own shows, gift on the cover of magazines and a print staple that gossip magazines. Their beauty, presence and aura pierced through the display signaling that a star to be awaiting.


Zoologist Ron Magill, center, points in ~ his wedding ring as dancers surround that while taping the renowned television show "Sabado Gigante" in 2006.LYNNE SLADKY / AP file

5. El Detector de Mentiras:


This is one of the more intriguing and enthralling sections of the show. A lie detector, together with an American polygraphist by the name of Joe Harper were introduced to the show to ascertain which civilization were telling truths or lies on infidelities. Several of the humor would arise when Don Francisco would certainly ask Harper come ask the participant polygraph questions in Spanish. That would shot his best and also at times would mispronounce details words giving method to accidental sexual innuendos that would send the audience into laughter. Don Francisco would feed turn off of these instances making these sections pure gold.


As we close in top top September 19 that this year, the main day the lamp go out at Sábado Gigante, we not just say goodbye come the longest-running tv variety series in history, we start to fade to black color on the abovementioned memorable moment it noted us, the exuberant laughs we will never forget and the cast of characters that us today call friends.

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But possibly the main reason to mark its exit is because television will never be the same again. This type of show belongs come a time gone by, a golden age in which today’s generation no longer embraces the layout as is. That is a part of our cumulative memories and also history, one that a legion of civilization will always remember fondly. This is to girlfriend Sábado Gigante, you made ours youths a funny one and also we will certainly treasure friend always.


Jack Rico is the editor-in-chief of ShowBizCafe.com and pop culture contributor for TODAY, VH1"s large Morning Buzz, Telemundo NY, Univision and SBS Radio. He"s likewise a member the BFCA (Broadcast Film critics Association) follow Jack ~ above Twitter: