Broadcast television veteran Maury Povich is 76, and although he's covered the Kennedy assassination and Watergate in his 50-year tenure, it may be his zany paternity tests on "The Maury Povich Show," in syndication from 1991-98, that are his trashtastic legacy. The on-air paternity revelations (Maury: "You ARE the father!") often resulted in on-stage pandemonium among the guests, forever enshrining "The Maury Povich Show" in American pop culture. On Thursday, Povich answered fan questions on Reddit's popular AMA (Ask Me Anything) forum.
"Maury Povich here," he wrote. "I'd be surprised if ANYBODY asks me a question." But there was no need for modesty -- fans came out in droves. The AMA's popularity prompted Povich to write an update: "I am very touched by how much people truly watch the show in all of its aspects. And wow. I'm blown away. Thank you." Among the revelations:
His Most Memorable Show
"It's happened twice. A woman accused a guy of being the father of her twins. And when I opened the envelope -- and I don't know the answers before anybody else does -- he was the father of one of the twins, but not the other. And they were fraternal twins. And science says that's a million-to-one shot, that there could be two fathers of twins. And it's happened twice. So the million-to-one shot has come in twice. And that's the most surprised I ever was."
Reporting The Kennedy Assassination
"I can remember exactly where I was the moment we all heard about it. I was covering a local story at the District Building, which is basically city hall in Washington DC. and my starkest memory of the ensuing days was that night, the radio station asked me to go to Andrews Air Force Base, and I saw Jackie Kennedy come off that plane, in that bloodied suit, and the casket coming out the back of the plane, and... we're talking... over 50 years ago. I still... I can see that as if it was yesterday."
Thoughts On 'South Park' Parody
"First of all, it was brutally remarkable. I was taken by it. To the point where I called up the creators, and I couldn't get them, for several days, because I guess they thought I was mad at them. And I wasn't at ALL! I was so humbled by their efforts that all I wanted was a couple of the cartoon cells so I could put them on my wall. And finally, the powers that be answered the call and I have them! And they're displayed prominently in my home."
On Wife Connie Chung And What He's Learned About Relationships From Guests
"It's okay to argue, and it's okay to have separate feelings from each other, in terms of subject matter, and argue, and things like that. But you've GOT to make up before the head hits the pillow at night. And also, I've learned (unfortunately a lot of my guests haven't with the lie detector show) you've got to give your significant other a long leash, and have a lot of trust in them, so they can remain independent and you are a couple at the same time."
How TV Has Changed, Why His Show Endures
"So you've got to have some kind of signature. Some kind of... uniqueness. In order to survive. And fortunately, we've had it. Look - no television researcher could ever explain my show. I've been on the air longer than anybody out there. I am older than anyone out there. And I have the youngest audience of anybody out there. I mean, that's an inverse equation. Nobody can figure it out. And quite frankly - I don't want to figure it out."