The Bill Tush Show (TV Series 1980– ) Poster

(1980– )

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Brilliant comedy on a shoestring.
WallyB5 February 2004
Before Bill Tush went to Hollywood for CNN and before TNT, TCM, Cartoon Network and the rest of the Turner Empire invaded the airwaves there was "SuperStation WTBS" a satellite rebroadcast of UHF channel 17 from Atlanta.

Fresh from his cult status as the host/anchor/writer of then WTCG's overnight "newscast" ( sometimes featuring a dressed up dog ) Bill Tush hosted this wacky hour of original sketch comedy taped in the same studio that was used for weekend wrestling programming.

Featuring talent from Atlanta comedy clubs and local theatre groups including future "Saturday Night Live" writers and "3rd Rock From the Sun / That 70's Show" creators Bonnie & Terry Turner and comedienne Jan Hooks, the comedy routines generally centered on TV shows and the TV industry.

"P.U. Magazine" a wicked send up of Group W's nauseating "P.M. Magazine" featured way too cheerful hosts trying desperately to outdo each other.

"60/40" a nearsighted slap at "20/20" and "60 Minutes" featured Tush as reporter "Mickey Hinkley".

"The Tammy Jean Show" featured Hooks as a female televangelist at the height of the Jim and Tammy Faye Baker scandal. Hooks was joined by Bonnie Turner as her Erik Estrada loving organist and Terry Turner as her guitar playing straight-man.

"Captain Space" had Tush in the title role with the cast wearing silver plastic weightloss suits and Hooks as "the ravishing Darla" in a parody of old SciFi B movies that often looked like a human version of the Muppets "Pigs in Space".

Another skit took a swing at a show from the Turner network which inhabited the basement under the WTBS studio where Tush was taped. "Mandy Freebird" hosted "Freebird Reports" an oh-so thinly disguised look at fledgling CNN's "Freeman Reports" interview program.

Local TV news was skewered by "Tri-Cities Action News" (a production of Tri-Cities Action News, copyright Tri-Cities Action News)

In addition to the comedy sketches the program featured any musical act which was passing through or could be talked into coming to Atlanta.

Late night cult record star Slim Whitman ( more than Elvis or The Beatles !) appeared in the premier broadcast followed in later shows by groups including The Vapors and Roseanne Cash.

While never as zany or slick as its higher cost cousins "SCTV" and "Saturday Night Live" the Tush show was nonetheless masterful in its ability to make something of nothing ( in one skit about Santa's reindeer, antlers were made by attaching rubber gloves to baseball caps !)

Should you ever get a chance to see it in reruns (alas doubtful) you will see the budding of the brilliant comedy of Bonnie and Terry Turner in a rare closeup peek.
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Terrific skit comedy show, properly named "Tush!"
Craig S. Thom12 July 2001
Bonnie and Terry Turner (and later Jan Hooks) went to Saturday Night Live based on the strength of this skit comedy show, while Bill Tush moved to California to work for CNN. One of my favorite recurring skits was Captain Space, with costumes made of silver weight loss suits and helmets of plastic water bottles. Another featured Tush as a high school coach and Hooks as a seductive student.

It aired on Sunday nights at 7 pm on WTCG (now WTBS).
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Ahh, Yes...
imdb_chip10 December 2001
One of my favorite sketches had Jan Hooks as televangelist Sister Tammy Jean. "So much of what we lust after isn't real. But my face... My face is real. This plate [a collection plate] is real. It's real empty!"

The show would get whatever celebrity they could who happened to be in Atlanta that week; two I remember are Burt Reynolds and Isaac Asimov.
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The Tush Show was indeed funny
scottarino30 December 2003
I can hardly remember it today as its been a while since it last aired. I wish it would be packaged on DVD it was that funny. I do remember a beer commercial parody "TUSH BEER.......goes right down your throat.........goes right thru ya!" or Captain Space, or a great performance by The Brains! I can also remember when Bonnie and Terry Turner went to write for SNL many of the best Tush sketches went with them for performance on the SNL show itself.
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Funny, well-crafted show
jmissinnemm13 October 2014
The Bill Tush Show (simply called "Tush" on screen) is one of my favorite memories of early cable TV, when no one really knew what would work and almost anything and everything could be tried...just as long as it didn't cost too much.

Bill Tush himself, the host, was an amiable ex-newscaster whom I always thought resembled Charley Chase, the old-time movie comic, but with blow-dried 80's hair. The main set of the show was a long hallway lined with doors, thru which Bill could walk into (or look in on) the sketch situations.

Some of your other reviewers have mentioned the regular features like "Captain Space" (my favorite of those segments being a visit to the "Planet of the Anchormen," which caused the Captain and crew to act like local-TV news...well, anchormen) and the "Tammy Jean Pickett Hour of Inspiration," featuring the sadly departed Jan Hooks.

Less frequent but hilarious were the recurring spoofs of those late-night record offer commercials, always featuring "Ada Frump, the Bulgratzian Balladeer," singing her "hits" like "Goodbye, Toledo, Goodbye" and "I Hurt Myself Pushing Heavy Things," and a sketch taking place in a greasy-spoon diner.

Recurring gag lines included the Ravishing Dahrla's (Captain Space) hysterical "WE'LL ALL BE KILLED!!" and a throw-away line in sketches involving small-talk about characters' children, "My two do too."

While some of the humor was topical, all of it was well-written and played. "Tush" is still a great example of how ingenious comedy can overcome a bargain-basement budget.
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