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October 8, 2015

Sketch Comedy Saturday: All That

by Annie Wu, posted Jun 27th 2009 12:21PM
All ThatThis installment of Sketch Comedy Saturday holds a very specific goal. On one hand, it's to serve as a minor aid in the quest to overcome Saturday Night Live withdrawal. It's also a very effective excuse to feel nostalgic for the 90s. Believe it or not, the 90s were almost 20 years ago. Take a moment and let that sink in to your old, old brain, dinosaur.

This week, we will be touching upon a little show called All That, which some of you may remember as Nickelodeon's attempt at a kid version of SNL. Also, the theme song is by TLC, so you know it's 90s-crazy.

All That was part of the ever-epic SNICK line-up, which was kind of like an [adult swim] for kids that were allowed to stay up slightly later than their younger siblings. The skits and characters were pretty immature, as was expected, and consisted mainly of casual references to things like ointment, earwax and cheese.

I can't believe this clip has eluded me, even with my mad Internet-sleuthing skills, but I wish I could share the skit that Chris Farley guest starred in. There were two chocolate-obsessed recurring characters who hosted a cooking show in which they slathered absolutely everything in chocolate and, one day, they were challenged by an over-enthusiastic, ketchup-loving chef, played by Mr. Farley. As usual, he played it to the absolute max, flailing everywhere and flinging ketchup. It was intense. And awesome.

The program spawned the Amanda Show, a small-screen sort-of spin-off of All That starring the incredibly annoying Amanda Bynes. It was a vehicle for Bynes to be eve more candy-colored and girly-obnoxious, so naturally I didn't care for it. She had an audience though, and that's why she continues to make things like What I Like About You and Sydney White. I believe she was the first player addition they made to the original All That cast and her whole "thing" was that she would be bratty and annoying all the time. The fact that she started off as a kind of impostor in my beloved original cast never sat quite right with my super-young self, so I have always harbored a weird grudge against Bynes. I'm sure she's a very nice lady in real life.

The show also spawned a feature film called Good Burger. I am simultaneously proud, ashamed and absolutely mortified that I saw this film in theatres as a little kid. I mean, not that I dressed up as a small child and attended a screening; I was young and I was into sketch comedy, so I went to see the film. Needless to say, it was pretty horrible and I knew it even back then. Also, I distinctly remember Carmen Electra's purple lingerie being very distracting.

Kenan & Kel, on the other hand, I thought was hilarious, even though there's a line in Bamboozled that referred to it as a minstrel show. It was a sitcom featuring two extra--prominent All That cast members. Back then, I remember feeling pretty bad for Kenan Thompson because he always had to play it cool when the audience would throw more applause Kel Mitchell's way, but we all know how that worked out. Mitchell did some Pepsi commercials with Monique and had a part in Mystery Men, like ten years ago; Thompson continues to do sketch comedy as a featured player on Saturday Night Live, where he occasionally Jean K. Jean, a dance-y French character not-at-all related to his All That character Pierre Escargot.

Fluffy stand-up Gabriel Iglesias was also a cast member at one point, as were Mr. Mariah Carey, Nick Cannon, tiny Pete from Pete & Pete, Danny Tamberelli. Others have done small parts here and there on sitcoms. in later years, people like Jamie Lynn Spears joined in. And then the show got cancelled.

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It's sad that people don't know how great this show was. I too loved Kenan & Kel, and Good Burger was a hilarious movie. "Welcome to Good Burger, home of the Good Burger, can I take your Orrrrrrder?"

Years later, I still say "Who loves Orange soda?" before drinking orange soda (And finishing in my head 'I do I do I do-EW!').

I feel bad not for Kenan, but for Kel. The man has had some rough times. He deserved better after Kenan & Kel ended... he is absolutely hilarious (Or was on TV).

I can't watch SNL, it's garbage. All That is absolutely where it's at. Nick Cannon was the worst thing that ever happened to Nickelodeon, and America's Got Talent. Once he comes in, he ruins everything.

I'd like to remember my All That of the Amanda Bynes era. Perfection in television, and NOT children's television alone.

June 28 2009 at 8:36 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to MCW's comment

I should mention Josh Server (Ear Boy) as well. It's so sad this mad is not the most famous cast member, because he was easily the best on the show next to Kel Mitchell. Explain that to me.

June 28 2009 at 8:44 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

This was my childhood. No matter how bad the episodes look now, I'm still going to remember them as the best thing that ever aired. Hopefully today's kids won't do the same to Hannah Montana...

June 28 2009 at 10:54 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

all that was such EPICsauce, i still can remember some of the best things ever being on that show, but when they went all next generation with the new cast members i kinda tuned out then they cancelled it and i was happy.

June 27 2009 at 7:33 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I used to watch All That too when I was a kid and completely forgot about that sketch with Chris Farley. Well guess what? I found it! Here it is.


June 27 2009 at 5:18 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I used to love watching this show. The theme song was funny as well as the cast.

Pierre Escargot was a hilarious portion

June 27 2009 at 1:57 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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