Bergen would get his big break in radio on the Rudy Vallee Hour in 1937 and would be a overnight success. Bergen established the characters he would work from for the next 2 decades, the kind but stern Father figure to Charlie's naughty, wisecracking wooden boy. He proved so popular a year later the Chase and Sanborn Hour was created and Bergen and McCarthy the stars with Don Ameche. The show would be one of the top shows for the next 2 decades and it was all the popularity of Charlie McCarthy. Bergen the man behind the dummy was the sidekick and Charlie the star. So convincing was Charlie that people forgot he wasn't real.
One of the best gags was the mock Feud between Vaudeville star comic W.C. Fields and Charlie...So popular Fields would appear many times creating some of the best shows in the series.
Later in the shows run Bergen would bring on his own daughter Candice (Candice Bergen of Murphy Brown Fame). She would play the roll of Charlie's sister a role she played in way in real life.
Bergen would continue on until 1955 but never found a home on TV like other popular radio stars like Bob Hope and Jack Benny. His last appearance was a cameo in the Muppet Movie.