Peanuts Gallery

May 23, 2010 7:44 pm | Figurines

What is the origin of the phrase "peanut gallery"?

Oooh boy, this is a good one!

In the 1950's, when TV as brand new, there was a black and white TV show called "Howdy Doody". Howdy was a marionette puppet and the show was kind of a primitive, cow-boy, western Sesame Street.

There was an audience of real children on the stage called "The Peanut Gallery", because children were called 'peanuts' in those days, because they were little. The adult human host (Uncle Bob, I think), would ask a question Howdy couldn't answer, and then Uncle Bob would shout "Well, let's hear it from the Peanut Gallery!" And the children would answer, laugh, applaud or whatever fit best.

You might be able to find clips on the internet.

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