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August 28, 2015

TV Funhouse

Seven of the greatest Saturday Night Live Christmas sketches ... that we could find on the web - VIDEOS

by Danny Gallagher, posted Dec 25th 2008 8:30PM
Christmas is the easiest holiday to make fun of because it can be so hokey and jolly. It's like the office jolly holly -- someone who's always smiling, always bringing gooey sweet goodies to the office for no reason, always cackling at everyone's jokes, no matter how bad they are or what MadTV episode they were taken from.

But deep down, you know that anyone that happy has to be making up for something equivalently dark and sinister. They are hiding a dark secret, something they can't even admit to themselves. You just know that the rises in sick leave usage after she brings her secret recipe brownies aren't coincidences.

Christmas wears the same mask. All it takes is a little scratching to find something dark and funny behind its red and white veneer. SNL has had some great success taking pot shots at Christmas, even during the down times, for this very reason. It's hard not to find something funny about Christmas, but it's hard to keep finding something funny about it long after the turkey has been picked clean and the eggnog has left a thin layer of plaque on the inside of your small intestine. Here are the best of the best.

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Triumph at the SDCC - VIDEOS

by Brad Trechak, posted Aug 5th 2008 9:02AM
TV FunhouseFor those who haven't seen them, NBC has posted a set of hilarious videos involving Triumph the Insult Comic Dog appearing at the San Diego Comic-Con. Triumph creator Robert Smigel was at the event to plug the DVD of his short-lived Comedy Central series TV Funhouse, so it should come as no surprise that the puppet dog he created would show up as well.

Despite Triumph's insults against the nerd community, it should be known that Robert Smigel is a bigger nerd than anybody attending the convention. This is useful as he can at least insult fellow conventioneers with knowledge. This must make his insults sting all the more.

I had the pleasure of seeing Triumph live at a comedy concert. However, once you've been to one of his live shows, you can tell that his television appearances are heavily edited to make sure only his best bits appear. Despite this, Triumph remains hilarious to watch in any medium.

Videos are after the jump.

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Comedy Central's TV Funhouse - Comic-Con Report

by Richard Keller, posted Jul 25th 2008 1:33AM

Odenkirk, Smigel, Dino and Tommy

If there is one thing I learned during the Comedy Central TV Funhouse panel on Thursday night, it's this: they are not good with computers. For most of the evening panelist Robert Smigel and moderator Bob Odenkirk spent their time fiddling around with the Mac laptop provided to them so they could show clips from the TV Funhouse DVD that was released on Tuesday. After they got that squared away they spent several more minutes setting up an iChat so Funhouse host Doug Dale could join in the conversation. They even needed to ask a member of the audience for their Mac Powerbook in order to set the session up. Obviously, you don't want these guys on your technical support team.

Despite the technical difficulties, the TV Funhouse panel was the highlight of my Thursday at Comic-Con.


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New TV on DVD releases this week

by Bob Sassone, posted Jul 21st 2008 6:00PM

TV FunhouseHere are the new TV DVDs, in stores tomorrow.

  • Earth - The Biography
  • L.A. Ink - Season 1
  • Las Vegas - Season 5
  • Masters of Horror - Season 2 (Boxed Set)
  • The Mummy - Seasons 1, 2, and 3 (animated)
  • Robot Chicken - Star Wars
  • Sesame Street - Count On Sports
  • Spaced - Complete Series
  • Transformers - Cybertron
  • TV Funhouse - TV Funhouse

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Giveaway Monday: TV Funhouse

by Keith McDuffee, posted Jul 21st 2008 10:01AM
tv funhouse dvdAnother giveaway today! This time we've got five copies of Comedy Central's TV Funhouse on DVD for five lucky, random commenters. The DVD is already available in stores.

To enter, leave a comment below before 5:00PM Eastern, Friday, July 25 simply telling us why you'd like to own this series. As always, we'll randomly choose five winners amongst the eligible entries. Some other details:
  • To enter, leave a confirmed comment below stating why you'd like to own TV Funhouse on DVD.
  • The comment must be left before July 25, 2008 at 5:00PM Eastern Time.
  • You may enter only once.
  • Five winners will be selected in a random drawing.
  • Five winners will receive a TV Funhouse DVD (valued at $26.99).
  • Open to legal residents of the 50 United States, the District of Columbia and Canada (excluding Quebec) who are 18 and older.
Click here for complete Official Rules.

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Comic-Con Countdown: The first day

by Richard Keller, posted Jul 10th 2008 2:40PM

What's going on during day one at ComicCon? LotsFor those of you attending Comic-Con in San Diego, my hat is off to you. After looking at the schedule for the opening day, Thursday, July 24th, it is a wonder that your eyes don't grow glassy and that vein on the side of your temple doesn't throb with all of the events listed for that day. For those of you not attending, you may be breathing a sigh of relief that you won't have to decide what to attend and what to miss.

Granted, we here at TV Squad are only going to Comic-Con to cover the television-related events. Still, there are quite a few of them going on Thursday, starting when the convention opens and ending as the next day creeps into the night. Panels cover the gamut: public television shows, show revivals, anniversary panels about shows that have been revived, and Robert Smigel. So, if you are going, bring some comfortable shoes, plenty of snacks, and a ton of questions.

If you are not going, but are still interested in seeing what's going on in San Diego, here is a list of TV-related events for the first day of the convention. If you are interested in the complete list of events you can go to Spout blog for Thursday's full Comic-Con schedule.

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Is an apple bong too strong for Paramount?

by Bob Sassone, posted Apr 25th 2008 3:21PM

Home GrownWhen I was younger, people I knew had various ways of smoking weed. One guy even made a bong out of an apple once. I didn't know it at the time, but now I look back and he seems like the MacGyver of pot smokers. Though he's not the only one who did such a thing, of course.

Case in point: the cover of the new Comedy Central Home Grown DVD. It's a DVD that showcases various episodes of Comedy Central shows, including Chappelle's Show, Reno 911, TV Funhouse, The Sarah Silverman Program, Lewis Black's Root of All Evil, and Strangers with Candy. This is the cover that Paramount released to media outlets back in March. Now they've changed the cover to this, a closeup of a giant mushroom. Looks like they had second thoughts about having a bong on the cover of a DVD and decided to change it. Of course, I'm not sure if a mushroom connection is something they thought about all the way (and also having some people think of a penis when they see the cover, ahem).

The DVD comes out on June 10.

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Robert Goulet on TV Funhouse - VIDEO

by Bob Sassone, posted Nov 3rd 2007 12:01PM

Robert GouletRobert Goulet, who passed away this past week at the age of 73, had a lot of great credits on his resume: singing and acting on stage in Camelot and Man Of La Mancha, movies like Toy Story 2, and Grammy and Tony Awards. He also got drunk with a bunch of raunchy animal puppets.

But that was part of his sense of humor, the guy who do Broadway but also make fun of himself (I like this odd Emerald Nuts commercial.) After the jump are clips from TV Funhouse, the episode where the Anipals go to Atlantic City to see their successful friend Triumph The Insult Dog. Please note that the clips show animal puppets drinking, using bad language, and one real dog giving fake oral sex to a puppet dog. Thank you.

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TV Funhouse coming to DVD!

by Bob Sassone, posted Aug 30th 2007 8:09AM

TV FunhouseNo, not the TV Funhouse from Saturday Night Live (that's already on DVD, a best of). I'm talking about the short-lived Comedy Central series that that Robert Smigel did in 2000-2001. Paramount has announced that the DVD is coming in December.

If you've never seen the show, it was truly one of the more bizarre TV shows we've ever seen on television. It took the form of a kids shows hosted by Doug Dale and his "Anipals," really crass, creepy puppets. Each show had a "theme," such as "Western Day" or "Christmas Day" or "Astronaut Day."

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Dino Stamatopoulos: The TV Squad Interview

by Adam Finley, posted Oct 27th 2006 7:01PM

Scott Adsit, Jay Johnston and Dino Stamatopoulos

(Left to right: Scott Adsit, Jay Johnston and Dino Stamatopoulos)

Dino Stamatopoulos has written for some of the funniest cult comedy series in the last ten years, including Mr. Show, TV Funhouse, Tom Goes to the Mayor, and most recently Moral Orel, an oft-misunderstood stop-animated cartoon created by Stamatopoulos himself. He's also written for other series, including Late Show with David Letterman, Late Night with Conan O'Brien, and Mad TV.

With the new second season of Moral Orel starting November 12, Stamatopoulos and I spoke on the phone about what fans could expect in the new season, and about TV comedy in general.

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Straight poop with Robert Smigel

by Bob Sassone, posted Oct 23rd 2006 10:35AM

Robert SmigelHey, that would make a great title for a Smigel-hosted talk show, but it's actually the title of this Entertainment Weekly interview with the comic, writer, and puppet master.

He talks about several things, including his appearance at San Diego's Comic-Con, his new Best of TV Funhouse DVD, picking on nerds in high school, Borat, and why he wants to get Triumph The Insult Comic Dog on the Home Shopping Network.

He also talks about something I didn't even know was in the works: a big-screen Ambiguously Gay Duo movie. He says that a couple of A-list comedy stars might play Ace and Gary, but he can't talk about who they are right now. Hopefully it's the actual people who do the voices, Stephen Colbet and Steve Carell.

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Bob Odenkirk on TV Funhouse - VIDEO

by Adam Finley, posted Sep 6th 2006 7:02PM
tv funhouseI was a big fan of Robert Smigel's TV Funhouse, which lasted for only one season on Comedy Central, though I have to admit I thought some of the animated segments were funny more in theory than in execution. One of my favorite segments from the show featured Bob Odenkirk as the host of a program on the extent of human knowledge and how much we actually know, or don't know. It's typical Odenkirk in that it's incredibly funny and makes you wonder just what part of your brain you need to whack with a hammer in order see the world the way he does. Scott Adsit, a fellow cast member on Mr. Show, makes an appearance as a scientist. More clips from the series and some full episodes can be found here. Enjoy Bobby after the jump:

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Saturday Night Live: Best of TV Funhouse

by Anna Johns, posted Apr 30th 2006 1:46PM
ambiguously gay duo; snlI don't know what Jimmy Fallon did to anger Robert Smigel (or maybe Smigel knows Fallon can take a joke), but I totally appreciated the long-running joke about Ace and Gary thinking he was the best actor ever on SNL. Later on, when they're looking for Jimmy Fallon, they get into a fight with Andy Samburg and Jason Sudeikis and Gary's butt ends up in Andy's face. They also end up wrestling, bringing Jason and Andy's... ahem... relationship into question. And it all ends with Jimmy Fallon (!) pretending to cry as Ace and Gary fly off in their penis-mobile with a naked Jason and Andy. That was a great bit.

There were so many animated shorts in this episode, that I'm only going to write about my favorite ones:

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The TV Funhouse segment you won't see this Saturday

by Adam Finley, posted Apr 26th 2006 3:00PM

tv funhouseRobert Smigel started airing his animated "TV Funhouse" segements on Saturday Night Live back in 1996. In 1998, he created a short called "Conspiracy Theory Rock" which poked fun at corporate ownership of television networks, and was especially scathing when it came to NBC and its parent company, General Electric. The segment aired only once and was never seen again. According to NBC, however, it wasn't pulled due to content, but to allow for a second Backstreet Boys performance when the episode was re-aired. Well, it is hard to say no to the Backstreet Boys, that's for sure. Anyway, you can check out the short here. Or alternatively, watch this Backstreet Boys video. Like NBC, I know it's often difficult to choose between the two.

Update: I left the link, but as of right now it appears to be broken. Sorry, guys.

[via Cartoon Brew]

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SNL to air Best of TV Funhouse

by Joel Keller, posted Apr 10th 2006 7:24PM
TV FunhouseI haven't watched many of SNL's "Best of" specials, mainly because I don't particularly want to see sketches that I've already seen a number of times (although Chris Farley dancing at Chippendales never gets old). But the next "Best of" special I'm going to want to record. Why? Because on April 29, NBC will air The Best of TV Funhouse, hosted by Ace and Gary, otherwise known as the Ambiguously Gay Duo (voiced by Stephen Colbert and Steve Carell, by the way). Not only will the show air the best of Robert Smigel's shorts from the last 10 years -- a period where often the Funhouse segment was the only thing funny about SNL -- but there will also be a new AG Duo short.

I'm especially looking forward to the Charlie Brown Christmas parody, because Smigel so accurately apes the odd speaking patterns of the Peanuts kids-- and the ultra-cheap 1960's animation -- it's scary. If I had a TiVo, I'd probably put this on one "Save until I delete" status.

[via The Futon Critic]

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