Chespirito: Who was Roberto Gómez Bolaños and why is he being celebrated by Google?

Adam White
The iconic Mexican comedian Chespirito, who has been honoured with a Google Doodle: LUIS ACOSTA/AFP via Getty Images

Chespirito is being celebrated today on what would have been his 91st birthday.

The Mexican comedian, entertainer and producer, born Robert Gomez Bolaños, is the subject of today’s Google Doodle, which depicts the icon emerging from a TV set.

Bolaños is widely credited with transforming the face of comedy in Latin America, with his famed character El Chavo del Ocho a beloved figure in Mexico. Despite no new episodes of the character’s show being produced since 1980, it remains watched by millions worldwide.

Born in 1929 in Mexico City, Bolaños studied engineering before transitioning into screenwriting. He would write for a number of Mexican films and television series, where his talents earned him the nickname “Little Shakespeare”.

In 1970, he starred in his own sketch show, which launched a number of his most memorable characters – notably El Chavo, an eight-year-old orphan.

Bolaños would go on to star in further television shows and films, as well as write the music for telenovelas. He would also serve as inspiration for the Simpsons character Bumblebee Man.

Bolaños died in 2014 at the age of 91, but remains a cultural icon in Mexico and is today considered one of the most important comics of the 20th century.