his morning show, Ray donned a jump suit everyday that would be
covered by little notes. Ray would pull off a note to see what was next on
the show's agenda! The notes were actually blank. The idea of the
jumpsuit covered with notes harks back to when Rayner was still at
His debut show on Chicago television was Rayner Shine,
where Ray and Mina Kolb entertained the morning audience with
pantomime, lip synching to popular songs, and light banter. However,
faced with stiff competition from Dave Garroway over at WNBQ
on Garroway At Large and later with The Today Show
from NBC New York, Rayner Shine never made a dent.
Mina Kolb would move to Hollywood to be featured in the sitcom Pete
and Gladys in 1961. On Saturday afternoons in 1957, Ray hosted a dance party show a la Dick
Clark and Jim Lounsbury called The Ray Rayner Show.
When the owners of the basically new station (The former
United Paramount Theaters-owned WBKB-channel
4 had only recently hit the airwaves as the new CBS o&o WBBM-TV
decided that Ray was better suited as a children's show host, he
reluctantly agreed and The Little Show was born.
So Ray thought about an image. WBBM-TV's
other children's show Garfield Goose & Friend
(inherited from the old WBKB) had Frazier
Thomas as a "prime minister." Phil Murray,
a director at WBBM-TV at the time suggested a jumpsuit
because they were only $5 at Sears. On his first show Ray wore a brown
jumpsuit. But it needed something, so Murray suggested the use of notes
stuck to the jumpsuit and the rest is history. In a sense, Ray predated
post-it notes by thirty years.
Ray later appeared as Capt. Abernathy on Popeye's
Firehouse (also on WBBM-TV-by now settled in on
channel 2) before being wooed over to WGN-TV-channel 9 to
appear as Sgt. Henry Pettibone in the local live segments of
the syndicated limited animation series The Dick Tracy Show.
Three months later, Ray made his first appearance on the successful noon
Circus as Oliver O. Oliver, He would stay until