Unfortunately, vaudeville and variety entertainment was dying long before television appeared on the national scene. The talkies and the Great Depression helped kill vaudeville as mass entertainment, with radio (free for the price of a set) contributing to the demise.
It must be remembered that television sets did not outsell radios until the late 1950s and much of what was on television in the early days was old vaudeville/variety performers who had honed their skills in front of live audiences for decades before they were ever seen on television. Milton Berle (Mr. Television), Burns and Allen, Jack Benny, and Red Skelton were all vaude stars who migrated to radio and then television.
The Ed Sullivan Show was primarily a vaudeville performance for years as was the Hollywood Palace until the format was changed and the audience went away. Since producers can never be wrong, it was the audience who'd lost their interest in variety, not the hack way it had been presented by people who didn't know that much about entertainment.
The Banana Man is representative of a successful novelty act that one rarely sees today, his act being the end result of years of refining by performance, his timing honed to perfection. Few today want to take the time (or have the opportunity) to learn by this method. They want the quick fix...the "fast food" approach to performing.
Perhaps the greatest example of the novelty/timing act was Senor Wences. At one point, thanks to endless appearances on Sullivan, Steve Allen, Jack Paar, etc., everyone in the country who had access to television had to have seen Wences at least once. He did the same act for decades.
It was a privilege to sit in a theater and watch him work in front of several hundred people who'd seen him many times. He told no jokes, yet garnered great laughs because of the situations he set up with Johnny and Pedro. His act was like looking at a beautiful painting or reading a well-written novel - just enough paint to convey what the painter wanted and not a single unnecessary brush stroke anywhere or not a single unnecessary word in the narrative.