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October 4, 2015


On the 4th day of Festivus, TV gave to me... - VIDEOS

by Danny Gallagher, posted Dec 20th 2008 11:34AM
...Four impressions we'll be missing

When John McCain and Barack Obama became the clear front runners, no one thought anyone could pull off a decent impression of either guy. They were both bland, articulate politicians who could speak in clear, concise sentences and didn't sound like someone had stepped on their larynx with a golf cleat.

But in the zero hour, we were saved ... and not just by Sarah Palin.

These are the impressions that we're sorry to have to say goodbye to, even if we're glad the people they poke fun at may not be coming back.

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My reactions to the Emmy nominations, part two

by Allison Waldman, posted Jul 18th 2008 9:03AM
Emmy goldEarlier today I did a first take on the Primetime Emmy nominations, sharing with you my first impressions and noting a few surprises. Now, I'm going to finish what I started. Please, share your comments and your opinions about the nominations.

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The George Carlin of the 1960s - VIDEOS

by Richard Keller, posted Jun 26th 2008 3:06PM

A George Carlin publicity photo from the 1960sFor most, memories of George Carlin on television come from his many HBO specials starting from the 1970s and continuing up until the present day. For others, it was his appearance during the very first Saturday Night Live back in 1975. But, there was another George Carlin that many don't remember. That is the very young George Carlin from the 1960s.

Before the beard, and the long hair, and the swearing and his "the world is doomed" attitude, George Carlin was a traditional suit-and-tie stand-up comic. He began by teaming up with comedian Jack Burns in the late 1950s, then eventually went his own way. During that time he came up with a number of famous routines including "The Indian Sergeant," "The Hippy-Dippy Weatherman," and "Wonderful WINO." Many of these routines would be performed on shows like The Tonight Show (both the Jack Paar and Johnny Carson versions) and the Ed Sullivan Show.

After the jump you'll see two examples of his mid-60s television appearances.

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Five favorite George Carlin HBO routines - VIDEOS

by Joel Keller, posted Jun 25th 2008 1:40PM
George CarlinWhen I posted about George Carlin's death early Monday morning, I made a couple of mistakes, mainly due to a combination of shock and tiredness:

1) I said that Carlin "passed away." Anyone who's listened to Carlin's comedy knows that he hated euphemisms like "he passed away." So, let me correct things right now: George didn't pass away or leave this earth. He died.

2) I really didn't convey how ingenious his comedy was. His observations of even the smallest of human foibles and his examinations of how we use the English language were always among the funniest routines he would do, even funnier than the ones about politics or religion or anything else that happened to chap his ass that year.

I knew about Carlin mostly through his albums, because I didn't have HBO (Occupation: Foole was the first Carlin album I ever heard, and I still think it's the best). But, thanks to HBO and YouTube, I can give you -- in no particular order -- my five favorite Carlin routines ... well, at least the ones that aired on TV:

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NBC airing first episode of SNL as a Carlin tribute - VIDEO

by Joel Keller, posted Jun 25th 2008 12:45PM
Geroge Carlin on the 1st ep of SNLOf the many achievements George Carlin had in his long career, one that gets underplayed a bit is that he was the guest host on the first-ever episode of Saturday Night Live -- then called NBC's Saturday Night, thanks to Howard Cosell -- in 1975. Not a bad choice, I'd have to say; since the "Not Ready for Prime Time Players" were only a part of that first episode (there was a lot of music and odd Muppets about ... the show took some time to find itself), they needed Carlin to carry a lot of the comedic load. And that he did, giving the audience a number of his best routines from that time period.

As a tribute to the recently-deceased comedy legend, NBC will air the entire premiere episode of SNL this Saturday night. For those who have never seen the premiere before (it's on a DVD set of the complete first season), it'll be interesting to see how different the first episode is from the SNL format they know and hate-love today. I'll be DVRing it; will you?

To give you a taste, the opening monologue -- an early version of Carlin's classic "Baseball and Football" routine -- is after the jump.

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The Daily Show: June 23, 2008 - VIDEOS

by Annie Wu, posted Jun 24th 2008 12:24PM
Wyatt Iron Man"Indecision 2008": The Daily Show hasn't really mocked Barack Obama quite as heavily as the likes of John McCain or Hillary Clinton. In fact, they have made fun of the media's wild, paranoid speculation about Obama more than Obama himself. It was good to see them pick on him a bit for his rather presumptuous faux-Presidential seal, which was quickly pulled and called a "one-time" thing. I loved how most of the audience was too nervous to mock their man. "You know... You're allowed to laugh at him." Also, Barack Obama seems to have made a bit of a flip-flop recently, turning his back on public finance and calling it corrupt, despite showing his support earlier in the race. I hope he flip-flops more if it means seeing John Oliver as Matthew Lesko again.

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HBO to re-air classic George Carlin concerts

by Allison Waldman, posted Jun 24th 2008 12:04PM
George Carlin on stoolThe unexpected death of Tim Russert two weeks ago prompted numerous tributes and memorials from NBC and MSNBC, but because Russert was a news personality, they really couldn't re-air Meet the Press episodes or the night of the 2000 election to really show Tim Russert's substantive work.

The death of comedian George Carlin on Sunday was just as shocking -- and also attributed to a heart ailment -- but for Mr. Carlin there are many hours of his work available and relevant to rebroadcast. It'll give audiences a chance to re-appreciate his unique brand of comedy. In his long tenure with HBO, George starred in 14 comedy specials. Now, you'll be able to see a few of them one more time.

HBO is presenting a series of encore presentations, including his last concert, George Carlin: It's Bad for You, on Friday, June 27, at 9 o'clock (ET) on HBO (the main channel). The show debuted in March. But that's not all.

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George Carlin dead at 71

by Joel Keller, posted Jun 23rd 2008 5:25AM
George Carlin dead at 71Wow. I just got in from a very, very late flight from Denver, and the early-morning newscasts hit me with this wallop: my favorite comedian, George Carlin, passed away last night. On Sunday, he admitted himself into a local Santa Monica hospital, complaining of chest pains, and ended up dying that evening of heart failure. He was 71.

Carlin, of course, is most famous for the 1970s comedy routine "Seven Words You Can Never Say on TV." It was a bit which not only got radio stations that played it in trouble with the FCC, leading to landmark First Amendment and decency rulings by the Supreme Court, but he was also arrested in Milwaukee on indecency charges after doing the routine on stage there.

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Top 15 best (intentional) uses of profanity on TV - VIDEO

by Julia Ward, posted May 21st 2007 10:16AM
deadwood al swearingGeorge Carlin's "Seven Words You Can Never Say on Television" routine famously landed him in jail. He was charged for obscenity in 1972 after performing the bit at Milwaukee's Summerfest. When it was broadcast the following year on a New York City radio station, the FCC got in on the act. The radio station challenged the fine, and the case went all the way to the Supreme Court.

Now, I intend on using every one of Carlin's "dirty words" after the jump so consider yourself warned. Be prepared to wash your computer's mouth out with soap. It may look like a saint, but it swears like sailor.

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Carlin-Coulter showdown was a whole bunch of nothing

by Joel Keller, posted Jun 15th 2006 2:35PM
George Carlin and Ann Coulter on The Tonight ShowWell, that wasn't worth it. Anyone who tuned in to The Tonight Show last night to see a throwdown between conservative loudmouth Ann Coulter and liberal funnyman George Carlin was sorely disappointed (My colleague Mike was more than disappointed; see his thoughts here). Carlin largely kept quiet during Coulter's appearance, only cracking a joke that she's the only person that's made him "move to the right" (on the couch, that is) right after she came out. In fact, his reception of her was quite warm; I have my theories on that, like Carlin appreciated her "performance" (and, really folks, that's what it is, despite how pissed you may get at her inflammatory remarks).

In fact, Jay Leno was the one to try to call out Coulter on her caustic remarks on the "Jersey girls", the WTC widows who forced the creation of the 9/11 commission. He asked her why she had to use such extreme language when her point -- that Democrats trot out victims to keep people from arguing or objecting to their views -- would have been more effective if spoken rationally. Coulter just gave her canned remarks about liberals and Leno backed down. But at least I give him credit for asking. Too bad Carlin just decided to sit there. He must be getting soft in his old age.

[You can see some video of Coulter's entrance here, at least for today.]

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The Tonight Show: No fireworks between George Carlin and Ann Coulter

by Michael Sciannamea, posted Jun 15th 2006 12:47PM

Jay LenoI haven't watched The Tonight Show in a while. I much prefer David Letterman to Jay Leno anyway, but I find it a greater struggle to stay up past 11:35 PM to watch late night television. However, I wanted to watch The Tonight Show last night because both George Carlin, one of my favorite comedians, and Ann Coulter, who has been gathering much attention lately for her caustic commentary on the 9/11 widows, were going to be on the show. I thought there would be some major fireworks between Carlin and Coulter and would make for terrific television. I thought wrong.

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Carlin on Campus tomorrow night

by Adam Finley, posted Jan 27th 2006 11:59AM
george carlinArguably a living legend, George Carlin will turn the big 70 this year. The man has been around for so long and transcended generations with his comedy that he has an almost eternal quality to him. That's foolish, of course, since the man is only human, but there's something about watching this icon grow old that's rather unsettling, and almost unfair. If you happen to be near a television late tomorrow night, Comedy Central will be showing Carlin's 1984 special Carlin on Campus as part of their Secret Stash. The show will be completely uncut and unedited. If you haven't seen it, it's worth checking out. Then catch some recent footage of the venerable comedian and see just how quick-witted and prolific he still is.


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