Ugly Dave Gray

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Ugly Dave Gray
Born Graham David Taylor
(1933-12-26) 26 December 1933 (age 84)
Manchester, England
Occupation Actor, television personality, comedian
Years active 1973—present
Children Lisa and David Gray

Graham David Taylor, (born 26 December 1933), known better as Ugly Dave Gray, is a British-Australian comedian, actor, television personality, game show compere, radio host and commercial spokesperson.

Early life[edit]

Born Graham David Taylor, he transposed his first and middle names to come up with "Dave Gray". The "Ugly" part reportedly came his wife, who joked that Gray was so ugly, he made her look attractive. Active as a comedian in England in the 1960s


His first television gig in Australia was in the 1972, when he hosted a version of the game show Beat the Clock. Although still working as a stand-up comedian, by 1976 Gray had taken a straight dramatic role as publican Bunny Howard in the early episodes of soap opera The Young Doctors. The following year, however, Gray appeared in his most popular role, as a regular panelist on Graham Kennedy's Blankety Blanks.[1] He proceeded to leave his role in The Young Doctors after his initial 13-week contract expired in order to work on Blankety Blanks, with Kennedy himself convincing Gray to do the game show. [2] Gray had been receiving $100 a day for The Young Doctors, with Blankety Blanks paying $45 an episode this represented a pay cut.[3] Later Gray signed with agent Harry M Miller who negotiated the increased pay rate of $75 per episode, which remained until the series ended.[4]In October ,he appeared on the show The Hamster Wheel

Gray was appointed Court Jester to 1977 King of Moomba Mickey Mouse (a controversial choice with some Melburnians, who preferred 'home-grown' Blinky Bill).[5]


With his ever-present cigar, Gray became one of the most popular comedians on Australian TV. He became a game show host in his own right, helming Celebrity Tattle Tales from 1979-80, and Play Your Cards Right from 1984-85. Gray also appeared in a series of commercials for Half Case supermarkets in the 1980s, as well as spots for other products, including an erectile dysfunction nasal spray in 2003.[6]


In the 1980s, Gray also presented a drive-time radio program on 3UZ, with Mary Hardy.


According to Gray's autobiography It's Funny Being Ugly, Gray was not invited to speak at Graham Kennedy's funeral in 2005, and indeed did not know even know where the service was being held. He had to call presenter Philip Brady for details.[7]

Personal life[edit]

Ugly Dave Gray has two children, a daughter and a son. His son, also called Dave Gray, is following in his father's footsteps as a comedian.[8]

In 2011 Gray announced that he wished to be cryogenically frozen after death.[9]


References in popular culture[edit]

Gray was portrayed by Angus Sampson in the 2007 television movie The King, about the life of Graham Kennedy.


  1. ^ "Ugly Dave's Gray-ve plan". The Gold Coast Bulletin. Australia. 13 December 2010. p. 17. 
  2. ^ Gray, Dave. It's Funny Being Ugly, New Holland Publishers, 2005. ISBN 1-74110-409-2 pp 125-6
  3. ^ Gray, Dave. It's Funny Being Ugly, New Holland Publishers, 2005. ISBN 1-74110-409-2 p 126
  4. ^ Gray, Dave. It's Funny Being Ugly, New Holland Publishers, 2005. ISBN 1-74110-409-2 p 133
  5. ^ Craig Bellamy, Gordon Chisholm, Hilary Eriksen (17 February 2006) Moomba: A festival for the people.: "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 25 August 2006. Retrieved 25 March 2011.  PDF pp 17-22
  6. ^ "Impotent to get money back". 4 December 2003. Retrieved 2007-09-30. 
  7. ^ Gray, Dave. It's Funny Being Ugly, New Holland Publishers, 2005. ISBN 1-74110-409-2 p 224
  8. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 6 October 2008. Retrieved 19 April 2009. 
  9. ^ Jeffrey, James (13 December 2010). "Strewth". The Australian. p. 13. 

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