Now on Netflix Instant
A forerunner to cynical comedies like Arrested Development, 30 Rock, and Curb Your Enthusiasm, this HBO classic still makes me laugh even if the references (Ghost, Jodie Whatley, the first Bush Administration) are dated.
Garry Shandling, a pioneer in comedy, plays egocentric incredibly well as a third tier talk show host in this behind the scenes satire. No one says “horse shit” and gets drunk quite like Rip Torn as Artie, the show’s producer and while Jeffery Tambor’s work as George Bluth (on Arrested) is great, his portrayal of side kick Hank Kingsley is a revelation in pathetic, weak, and very funny assholery. Familiar faces like Janeane Garofalo and Jeremy Piven round out the cast in their pre-famous days.
I am enjoying revisited the show immensely and think those fans of the aforementioned shows who haven’t watched it the first time around will be delighted. Makes me wish Shandling was still working on HBO.