Last night was particularly crazy, as Conan, Garry Shandling, and Andy Richter helped Paula Deen make... something for Halloween. It gets kinda hectic so I'm not sure what it was.
The success of Slumdog Millionaire and Frost/Nixon recently inspired me to assess the ten best movies about television. TV has been a fertile source of entertainment for filmmakers. The TV turf is also a popular setting for TV shows, and there have been some all-time great shows about the tube. Here are nine that I think warrant special recognition -- in no special order.
1. The Mary Tyler Moore Show
It all started at WJM-TV in Minneapolis. The Mary Tyler Moore Show was the perfect sitcom blend of home and work, and work happened to be the local TV news team. As Mary Richards, the associate producer, Mary Tyler Moore was the single girl America loved because she was real, funny, gorgeous and lovable. At work, the news was mangled nightly by Ted Baxter, the quintessential news reader anchorman who loved every dulcet tone of his voice and had no idea what he was reporting. In perfect irony, when the show came to an end, most everyone at WJM -- Lou Grant, Murray Slaughter, Sue Anne Nivens, Mary -- were fired. Only Ted was spared!
"Extreme Makeover: Baghdad Edition": A new wall for the folks in Baghdad... and they don't seem to be too happy about it. The timing of "That wall is totally impenetrable -- oh, boy" made me laugh a little too hard. However, the Dennis Al-Menace joke caused me to feel a little foolish because there was a five second delay before I understood it.
Never heard of The Comedian Award? Well, don't feel too bad about that; Jerry is the award's first recipient. And the festival that is honoring Jerry is not the U.S. Comedy Arts Festival in Aspen nor the Just for Laughs festival in Montreal. It's The Comedy Festival, whose second annual edition was held last November in Las Vegas. So I hope Jerry treats this honor with the correct amount of reverence: in other words, none. I'm pretty confident that's exactly what's going to happen; comedians don't take comedy awards that seriously to begin with. Why should they start now?
[via Pop Candy]
Veteran comic/director/writer David Steinberg has a lot of stuff going on.
The second season of his TV Land talk show, Sit Down Comedy, began a couple of weeks ago with an interview with Jerry Seinfeld. This Wednesday, Steinberg sits down with Daily Show host Jon Stewart. The show airs at 10pm. The following weeks, Steinberg will interview Garry Shandling and then Ray Romano.
But that's not all: Steinberg also has a book coming out in June, The Book of David. And he's a busy guy in his life as a director too. He's directing his seventh season at Curb Your Enthusiasm, episodes of Campus Ladies, and a pilot for Dane Cook.
There might be a lot of people who aren't familiar with Steinberg since a lot of his work has been behind the camera for a while, but he has quite a resume.
As we told you earlier, Sony Pictures is going to release a 4 disc Not Just The Best Of The Larry Sanders Show DVD set on April 17. The set will include 23 of the best episodes, a ton of extras like interviews and behind the scenes footage, and new interviews with costars and guest stars, but some fans aren't too happy about how the show is being handled.
The first season DVD set was released in 2002 and, according to DVD Dossier, was met with anger by fans of the show. They say the video transfer was really grainy and unprofessional, not to mention the fact that the extras were lacking. The site wants to know why they are releasing this "best of" set instead of continuing the season sets with a release of season 2.
Anyone have the first season DVD set? How is it? Are you looking forward to this set?
[thanks to Judith for the tip]
I don't think I've ever heard news that this was coming to DVD, but fans can be happy that this special set comes out on April 17.
It's not a first season set (is there a first season set out?), it's more of a "best of" from all six seasons, even if it is titled "Not Just The Best of The Larry Sanders Show." The four disc set will include 23 episodes, a making of featurette, deleted scenes, a cast reunion, and interviews with several stars and guest stars: Jeffrey Tambor, Rip Torn, David Duchovny, Jon Stewart, Jerry Seinfeld, Carol Burnett, and Alec Baldwin.
The interviews were done a year ago by Garry Shandling himself, with a handheld video camera, so you know they're not going to be just DVD filler interviews and footage.
You can check out Sit Down Comedy's guest line-up after the jump.
(S02E13) This is an early review.
Tom Peters has a less than stellar marriage, and it's been implied, though never blatantly shown, that his wife Joy might be unfaithful. The real question doesn't seem to be why Joy cheats on Tom, but how an ugly screaming whale of a woman like her would be able to find someone willing to make love to her. Of course, plenty of men dig the rotund dames, but Joy manages to make herself unpleasant in so many other ways that seems like a moot point.
Part of enjoying Tom Goes to the Mayor --and I think by this point those who don't enjoy the show have moved on to other things-- is that it exists in a world pretty much void of any adherence to physical or moral laws. Tom has been killed, gone to hell, inexplicably transported both his father and the Mayor to an airplane in mid-flight, and been trapped underwater with a tiny man trapped inside him. He's also married to a woman who hates his guts, and it's never made clear why they're married. If you start asking these kind of questions, though, you really shouldn't be watching the show in the first place.
Happy news for fans of Dr. Katz: Professional Therapist: the second season of the Comedy Central animated series about a shrink whose clients all happen to be comedians will be out on DVD November 21. The show starred Jonathan Katz as a therapist who tried to help his patients by, essentially, setting them up so they could tell jokes. The series also introduced many people to the comedic genius that is Jon Benjamin, who played Katz's son Ben. Benjamin would go on to voice Coach McGuirk on Home Movies, and occasionally offer his dry delivery to other cartoons such as Aqua Teen Hunger Force and Venture Bros. Looks like I have yet another DVD set to ad to my "To Buy Later" list on Amazon. Look for Garry Shandling, Steven Wright, Rita Rudner, and Emo Philips to appear in this season.
[via Toon Zone]
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