the Plumber - TVs favorite plumber was Josephine, the mascot and
spokesperson for Comet Cleanser.
Played by veteran actress Jane Withers, Josephine the plumber dressed in
white workers overalls and freely gave advice to her customers on the best way
to get stubborn stains from sinks and tubs. Of course, her recommended product
was "Comet Cleanser." Comet is a tough cleanser with a no-scratch formula. It
can be used on porcelain, stainless steel and fiberglass safely and it kills
germs like Staph, Salmonella and Pseudomonas. And because Comet contains bleach
it is ideal for cleaning toilets, sinks and tubs. Wow! no wonder Josephine likes
this stuff. In 2001 Procter & Gamble Company sold their Comet Cleanser product
line to Prestige Brands International.
TRIVIA NOTE: Jane Withers (a.k.a. "Josephine") was born April 12, 1926 in
Atlanta, Georgia. In her early days in film she played the part of an outspoken,
nasty little girl who gave Shirley Temple a hard time in Bright Eyes (1934) and
later in her own films Patty O'Day (1935), Little Miss Nobody (1936) and
Holly Terror (1937). On her own radio program, Jane was known to listeners as
"Dixie's Dainty Dewdrop."
As an adult Withers appeared in such movies as Danger
Street (1947), Giant (1956), Captain Newman M.D. (1963) and a 1975 TV Movie
Together. And, of course, the 1960s and 70s found Jane playing the part of
Josephine the Plumber in a series of very successful Procter & Gamble Comet
Cleanser TV commercials.
In recent years Jane appeared as Aunt Daisy in the TV
movie Zack & the Magic Factory (1981); the voice of Laverne in the Disney
animated feature films The Hunchback of Notre Dame (1996) and its sequel; and Clarabell
the Cow in the Disney TV series MICKEY MOUSE WORKS (1999) and HOUSE OF MOUSE
As of 2002, Jane, a widow, lives in Northridge, CA with her world-class
collection of dolls that she hopes one day to place in a museum for all the
world to see.