10 iconic TV commercial characters

  • Some actors have made a healthy living portraying venerable TV commercial characters hawking household products, snacks and beer -- in some cases it is their most identifiable role.

    Click through this gallery to watch commercials featuring 10 of the most iconic characters who appeared on TV screens, and the actors who made them immortal.


    "Mr. Whipple" for Charmin bathroom tissue

    Yes, supermarket store manager Mr. Whipple was a hypocrite -- castigating ladies who squeezed his stock of bathroom tissue, only to sneak in some squeezes of his own when he thought no one was looking.

    Before the Charmin campaign launched in 1964, British-born character actor Dick Wilson appeared in such TV series as "Wagon Train," "The Untouchables," "The Twilight Zone" and "McHale's Navy," and later in the Don Knotts comedy "The Shakiest Gun in the West." Wilson starred in hundreds of Charmin commercials in a span of more than two decades. (Some ads featured a stockboy, Jimmy, played by Adam Savage, a future co-host of "Mythbusters.") In the '90s, Mr. Whipple came out of retirement -- he just could not keep his hands off that squeezably soft toilet paper.

    Wilson died in 2007 at age 91.

  • David Morgan

    David Morgan is a senior editor at CBSNews.com and cbssundaymorning.com.