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August 29, 2015

Short-Lived Shows: Andy Richter Controls The Universe

by Adam Finley, posted Nov 18th 2005 3:07PM

andy richter controls the universeWhen Andy Richter first appeared on television as Conan O'Brien's sidekick, people hated him. Actually, they hated Conan, too. These were two unknown comedians trying to do their own thing with a show that once belonged to late night legacy David Letterman, and the public wasn't going to cut either of them much slack. The public was wrong, as it turned out, and both men turned out to be extremely likeable, especially Richter. Not just a mere "Ed McMahon" type who laughed at all of Conan's jokes, Richter was very much Conan's equal, and the two worked well as a team.


One of Richter's first ventures after leaving Late Night was the FOX series Andy Richter Controls The Universe, one of many quality shows FOX ended way too soon (it lasted for two seasons). The show centered on Andy, an aspiring short story writer who, like most aspiring writers, finds a "writing" job to make ends meet while he works on his real writing. In this case, he writes technical manuals for a company in Chicago that makes large scale weapons. The show is driven by Andy's overactive imagination as he imagines different scenarios and different outcomes which are played against the harsh reality of what's really going on. The show featured writers from such shows as Family Guy, Futurama, and Malcom in the Middle.

Best episode: Conan O'Brien guest stars on the show as Andy's new boss and turns out not only to be very eccentric, but a near-homicidal lunatic. Probably not much of a stretch for Conan, actually.

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Jason Anderson

Me want DVD. Will it hopefully come to DVD if it's not already?

November 19 2005 at 8:41 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

This blog can have an entire category dedicated to "Underappreciated FUX Shows".

November 19 2005 at 3:01 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Tom Farley

Where is the "Andy Richter Controls" DVD, preferably loaded with extras? This show was hysterically funny and criminally underappreciated, not unlike "Arrested Development," another show about to be dumped prematurely by FOX. If it makes Andy sad to talk about its demise, it's probably because his next TV gig was that awful "Quintuplets." I know a guy's got to pay the bills, but ... damn.

November 19 2005 at 2:44 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

This show was great, but...I think I missed the episode with Conan's guest star. Either way, its a damn shame that Andy hasn't done anything funny in a while (and don't even SAY the Q word).

November 18 2005 at 9:26 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Ryan j Budke

It's also a travesty that this hasn't been released on DVD yet. It's one of those "cult" shows that would have a huge DVD following and I trust that creative team behind the show could do some interesting things with the format.

November 18 2005 at 4:32 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

We need a new category: Underappreciated Shows. I loved this show and was PISSED it was taken off the air. I hear that any time this show is brought up to Andy Richter, he's either pissed off or completely saddened. And I don't blame him.

November 18 2005 at 3:35 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I love this show but then I love Paget Brewster so would watch it just to drool even if it had sucked. Fox certainly knows how to find good shows, they just have no clue what to do with them.

November 18 2005 at 3:21 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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