Jack Soo Poster

Trivia (10)

The cast of Barney Miller (1975) stepped out of character on a retrospective episode that aired in May of 1979 to offer a tribute to Jack, who had died a few months earlier during the show's fifth season. The episode recalled some of his best moments on the show.

In the late 1940s, he first met Barney Miller (1975) creator Danny Arnold while sharing the nightclub stages in the mid-West early in their show business careers.

Was interned in a camp for Japanese-Americans in Utah during WWII. He got out by enlisting in the US Army, and was assigned to the famous Japanese-American 442nd Regimental Combat Team (RCT)--the most decorated unit in the US Army--and fought in Italy.

His last words to Hal Linden as he was being wheeled into the operating room before his death were "It must have been the coffee." This was a reference to the running gag of his character Nick Yemana from Barney Miller (1975) having the reputation for making horrible coffee.

Cast as the show M.C. and comedian Frankie Wing ("Gliding through my memoree") in the 1958 Broadway cast of "Flower Drum Song", and Larry Blyden was Sammie Fong. Jack moved up to the Sammie Fong role for the 1961 film.

According to his daughter, speaking on camera in the 2009 documentary You Don't Know Jack: The Jack Soo Story (2009), his parents wanted him to be born in Japan. But he was actually born on board the ship en route to Japan from Oakland.

In the late 1940s he had a nightclub comedy act with Joey Bishop.

Best known as Det. Nick Yemana, notorious for making terrible coffee, on Barney Miller (1975).

His children are Richard Suzuki, James Suzuki, and Jayne Suzuki by his wife Jan Zdelar, a Croatian American former model.

When he got out of the army after World War II, he began a career as a singer. However, knowing that audiences would never accept him if he used his real Japanese name of Goro Suzuki, he changed it to the Chinese-sounding Jack Soo and billed himself as "The Chinese Bing Crosby".