Friday, February 29, 2008

You Can't Do That On Television

Robert Smigel is one of the funniest and cleverest guys around. Not only is he the voice of Triumph the Insult Comic Dog and most of the various TV characters that turn up on Conan O'Brien, he's the creative force behind the "TV Funhouse" segments on SNL.

TV Funhouse has managed to mock everyone from Walt Disney to the Reverend Robert Schuller to Michael Jackson -- and his affinity for young boys -- to SNL creator Lorne Michaels himself; it's also given us the screw-the-censors genius that is "Ace & Gary: The Ambiguously Gay Duo."

Yet despite all this envelope-pushing, only one episode of TV Funhouse has ever been banned.

This video aired only once; for pretty obvious reasons, NBC standards and practices has declared that it will never air again.


Anonymous said...

Brilliant. And now "The Ambiguously Gay Duuu-o" tune is stuck in my head for the day.

Anonymous said...

Maraka is my fave:
"Can you tell me how to test for a hernia?" long pause. "Muy buena!"


sparksinner said...

Hard to believe that running even once on NBC. Those bastards are probably the worst when it comes sucking at the corporate teat.

A year ago I tried to buy a spot schedule on MSNBC, probably about $100,000 spread out over (4) 1-week runs. But we were not advertising dick hardening pills. That probably would have been OK. No, I worked for a law firm that was looking for Qui Tam cases, also known as False Claims Act or whisteblower cases.

We sent the dub to S&P and it didn't take long to have it rejected. No other cable channel had a problem with the spot (including Fox and CNN), but clearly GE was not interested in bringing attention to the fact that lots of corporations screw the government out of money.

GJ said...

I dunno about it needing suppression by NBC. It may make valid points, it may hold up as satire, but it just isn't very funny.

Oh, wait--that makes it perfect for SNL, doesn't it? :)

Steve said...

I'm pretty sure this blog isn't helping my attitude.

Chris said...

Nothing here that most people don't already know (or should know if they were paying any attention at all). I am surprised that it aired in the first place.

Meh... I didn't think it was all that great. Not nearly as clever as his other films. If it were to come on a gain, I'd probably TiVo right on through it.

Blenderab said...


Conan's clip of Triumph, on tour with Bon Jovi was a scream, especially when, in reference to "Vampires: Los Muertos (2002) he tells Jon, "so now you play a vampire, a roll that REQUIRES you to suck!"

Long live Triumph, the greatest dog in the world... for me to poop on!!!


Anonymous said...

Boring as hell. But valid, even if as subversive as a screaming teenager who knows squat about the world.

But hey, Triumph-wise, check this clip where he, well, "reviews" a line of fanboys waiting to see Star Wars I (I think it was the first). I always get stomach cramps when I see that!