Strangers with Candy (1999–2000)

TV Series  |  TV-14  |   |  Comedy
8.1
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A 46-year-old ex-drug addict returns to high school as a freshman.

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A 46 year old prostitute moves back in with her father and returns to high school, where she's tasked with finding out if one of her classmates is mentally retarded.

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Cast

Series cast summary:
...
 Geoffrey Jellineck (30 episodes, 1999-2000)
...
 Chuck Noblet (30 episodes, 1999-2000)
Greg Hollimon ...
 Principal Onyx Blackman / ... (30 episodes, 1999-2000)
...
 Sara Blank (30 episodes, 1999-2000)
...
 Jerri Blank (30 episodes, 1999-2000)
...
 Derrick Blank (28 episodes, 1999-2000)
...
 Orlando Pinatubo (22 episodes, 1999-2000)
...
 Tammi Littlenut (14 episodes, 1999-2000)
Sarah Thyre ...
 Coach Cherri Wolf (13 episodes, 1999-2000)
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Storyline

Jerri Blank is a 46-year-old "boozer, user and a loser" who tries to put her life back together again. The reformed runaway and addict returns to high school as a freshman, where she tries to fit in and act hip with girls 1/3 her age. Unfortunately, she hasn't quite shed her immoral background or acquired any ethics, and her bizarre family and frustrated schoolmates have trouble interacting with her. Written by &view=simple&sort=alpha" >Michael "Rabbit" Hutchison <rabhutch@spacestar.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Doing things right....the second time around. See more »

Genres:

Comedy

Certificate:

TV-14
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Details

Official Sites:

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Release Date:

7 April 1999 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Незнакомцы с конфеткой  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

(30 episodes)

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The character of Jerri is based on motivational speaker Florrie Fisher, who traveled high schools in the 1970s talking about her fall from 1940s socialite to a heroin addicted prostitute in the 1960s. Many lines of dialogue in the show are taken verbatim from a recording of a speech she gave to a New York high school, which circulated for many years on the cult video market as "The Trip Back." In real life, Fisher fell out of the public eye in the early 1970s and for many years was believed to be missing and presumed dead. In the late 2000s, researchers turned up an interview with Mike Douglas in a 1973 issue of the Rotary Club publication "The Rotarian," in which Douglas recounted interviewing Fisher. According to Douglas, Fisher's disappearance was due to her being taken to a Miami hospital in the middle of her lecture tour, where she was diagnosed with liver cancer. The disease resulted in kidney failure, and she ultimately died of a heart attack on May 26th, 1972 at the age of 54. See more »

Quotes

Jerri Blank: Come on, pick me. Look, I have the legs of a mongoose.
See more »

Crazy Credits

At the end of every episode while the credits are rolling you see the cast in that episode dancing. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Will & Grace: Strangers with Candice (2003) See more »

Soundtracks

Strangers With Candy Theme
Composed by Mark Levenson
Producer Bob Golden
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

"Hobo camp"
15 June 2004 | by (Washington, D.C.) – See all my reviews

"Hobo camp," a term 46-year-old Jerri Blank uses after spelling V-I-C-T-O-R-Y during a cheerleader try-out, revealing her lifelong illiteracy and causing Coach Wolf to postpone the rest of the try-outs until "we can all recover … from Jerri's shame."

It took me about three months to actually muster the energy to watch Strangers With Candy in late 1999, and I did it only because it was advertised so heavily on Comedy Central, right alongside the Upright Citizens' Brigade. Once I saw it, though, I was hooked. It took only one episode.

I got friends into the show, and we'd throw out the oddest of lines to each other just on the off-chance that we'd all "get it." We'd say things with no relevance like "massage each other's ... clitorises" or "but I want to be a cheerleader" or "Greeks are just Jews without the money." It was hard not to find a line we didn't like or want to repeat after seeing this show.

That's not to mention all the minorities who were skewered by obviously unfeeling and unthinking characters. No one was spared the branding iron here.

From David Sedaris' sometimes crazy little sister Amy and a cast of Second City alums emerged a truly unique and gut-busting but, at the same time, subtly humorous opus to the After-School Special. From racism and classicism to bisexuality and class bullying, Strangers With Candy made the case for smart writing in an irreverent setting. Every line could make you think or laugh, but the timing was so quick that all one could do was chuckle and move on. It was hard not to pay attention to every minute of this show.

Of course it's a shame that Comedy Central canceled the show after only two seasons, but at least the show went out with a bang (literally – Flatpoint High was blown up).

What made the show most memorable for me was that, no matter how well-written and acted each of the offbeat characters was, none could add up to the unbelievably insane Jerri Blank. Everyone made a point to chastise, take advantage of, and downright abuse Jerri, but somehow she could pick herself up and move on and still come out with the best lines in the entire show. Sometimes, when a show takes off, although an ensemble is most important, you find that incidental and auxiliary characters become the mainstay of the show's success (like Kramer and Costanza surrounding Jerry on Seinfeld). In this case, Sedaris held her own with a kind of aplomb that only a seasoned professional can do.

Whether she was being threatened by her brother Derick ("dick lick"), overlooked by her step-mother (the brilliant Deborah Rush), pleaded with for restraint by her hapless pal Orlando, happily ignored by her art teacher Mr. Jellineck (longtime co-conspirator Paul Dinello), forced into community service by the Hitlerish Principal Onyx Blackman, or harassed unnecessarily by the ultimately selfish and tight-fisted Mr. Noblet (writing the word "me" on the board when instructing his students to "tell me..."), Jerri somehow survived countless challenges and came out learning the absolute wrong thing.

My favorite lesson: "The poor are a filthy, thieving people." You have to see the episode to understand it.


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