The Dana Carvey Show (TV Series 1996– ) Poster

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Why it was cancelled
regular815 January 2002
I saw The Dana Carvey Show on TV and I knew immediatly it would be cancelled. It was too pointed and it was going to offend too many people to be on TV. I thought the show was extremely funny, and I also thought it was totally unleashed, unrestrained, in its point of view. It was very sharp, gritty, no-nonsense stuff, with plenty of sharp barbs and dead-on observations. It reminded me of the straight, uncensored political and social humor of Lenny Bruce, Mort Sahl, Don Rickles, and even the vulgar physical humor of Charley Callas, when those guys were really at the top of their form. I was so sorry that TV cannot put this kind of great humor on and keep it on. That says a lot about our TV and its limitations, and proves that our TV has not lived up to its potential. The Dana Carvey Show was not tolerable; and we are not as free a people as we think we are.

Dana Carvey is one of our best comics and his shows should not be muted. He is very insightful, and his humor can shake us to the core. Where is an open forum where he can let loose? Long gone, on Chestnut Street.
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Put this show on DVD!
Shylock-614 December 2003
This is one of the funniest shows of the 1990s. Its a travesty ABC canceled it after six episodes. I can't think of a comedy program better suited for release on DVD. This was the first TV showcase for the brilliant talents like Stephen Colbert (The Daily Show), Steve Carell (Bruce Almighty), Robert Smigel (Triumph, the Insult Comic Dog) and Heather Morgan. Along with "The Ben Stiller Show" and "Freaks and Geeks," its the funniest '90s show canceled during its first season. We want it on DVD!
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The Mountain Dew Joke
chedobit24 September 2004
Cody, I simply had to respond to your message. My brother was the other actor in the skit with Dana where he went on and on saying "Bill...what does it LOOK LIKE!?" over the glass of Mountain Dew on the table. Bill responds with many safe answers before settling on "Liquid Sunshine!"

My brother -- Bill Chott -- had the privilege of being part of the cast and he wrote for the show as well. He had the pleasure of working with his two Second City teachers: Steve Carell and Stephen Colbert. Heather Morgan was just a doll besides holding her own in a predominantly male cast. Robert Smigel and Dana Carvey rounded out the genius of this group. The writers wrote some of the most quick-witted funny material I have ever seen. I think that is why NOT everyone GOT this show...it takes a certain level of intelligence to appreciate all the jokes.

I sincerely hope that they bring the whole season (11 eps in all) out on DVD soon. With lesser shows appearing on DVD left and right, I am miffed that this one has not been considered. I am proud of my brother's work in this show, of the stellar cast and crew, and of the fact that I got to visit the set back in April of 1996 and see it all happen!

Thanks!
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Cutting-edge, brilliant comedy!
johnritter4ever26 August 2005
Warning: Spoilers
Having been a huge fan of Dana Carvey's multi-talents on SNL, I was so excited that he would have his own network TV skit comedy show. When this innovative show premiered, I was blown away by the brilliance of the humor and the level of creativeness, not just by my idol Mr. Carvey, but by the cast as a whole and the quality of the writing across the board. However, I knew the show was doomed from the start because there was an uproar over the opening skit of the first episode; Dana as Pres. Clinton in the Oval Office who ends up opening his shirt, revealing MULTIPLE (as in 6 or 7) nipples on his chest, and nursing puppies! The producers and writers, after the fact and the big brew-ha-ha, admitting that might not have been the wisest choice of skits toned things down a bit, but ABC had it in for the show from that point on. "The Dana Carvey Show" was hilarious and did push the envelope, and one of the major problems was that it aired on network TV before 10pm at night! This show would have been perfectly fine on cable or if ABC had aired it in late night opposite SNL or "MAD TV" or in the old "Fridays" time slot, but ABC was not smart enough or brave enough to program this truly ingenious show properly.

"The Dana Carvey Show" not only showcased it's star, but was the springboard for Steve Carell & Stephen Colbert - my 2 favorite "Daily Show" correspondents of all time! Also, this show provided the great Robert Smigel with more face time than any other project he had worked on (writing, producing, doing voices). These 3 uber-talented men were cast members AND writers and contributed to many memorable moments in this short lived series that Dana Carvey unselfishly shared with his comically gifted friends.

One of my favorite sketches of all was an unbelievably right-on-the-money spoof of The Bealtes "Anthology" that had aired on ABC a few months prior. Dana did his best rambling Paul McCartney, Stephen Colbert turned on the scouse to do George Harrison, and if I remember correctly, Steve Carell was Ringo and Robert Smigel was the ghost of John Lennon! It was a masterpiece - being a life-long Beatles fan I was so amazed with their impressions and the imitation of the exact documentary style used in "Anthology".

Lastly, I was lucky enough to attend a taping of the show in NYC, but it was one of the episodes that never made air. "The Dana Carvey Show" should DEFINITELY be released on DVD for all to discover this sparkling gem that never really saw the light of day.
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10/10
too controversial? really?
herurubin31 December 2011
When googling the Dana Carvey there's a lot of articles about the demise of the Dana Carvey show was because of the controversial nature of the content, really? I missed the show the first time around and am watching it on Hulu now more than a decade after it's brief run and I've really enjoyed it.

The controversial aspect of the show was more likely the way it pokes fun at the nature of advertising and of real potential sponsors. There's a very "controversial" set of mountain dew that I don't think inspired the good folks at Mountain Dew to sponsor the show.

The show would open each episode with a show sponsor like "the Mug Root Beer Dana Carvey Show" reminding me of the old black and white Texaco Theatre show where singing Texaco gas attendants would introduce the show each night.

I've read that the "sponsors" of the show had nothing to do with the show and actually requested the Dana Carvey show stop listing them as sponsors.

Maybe I'm a sucker for classic television but I quite like the singing Mountain Dew can as a legitimate homage to television history... but I soon realized it was a satire of commercialism and advertising... oh, well.

The actual content of the show is fast paced, fun, and perhaps ahead of it's time. The pace and format of the show reminds me a lot of the brilliant season 1 of the Chapelle Show
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A show too funny to have on the air.
Zoamel26 June 1999
Throughout time ever since the early 1970s, there have been numerous incredibly funny sketch comedy shows. Shows like Monty Python's Flying Circus, Kids in the Hall, SCTV, and Saturday Night Live were the pinnacle of comedy. Out of those shows that were mentioned above, only one of them is still on the air, and that is a sad state of affairs. Then, in 1996, a new show came out from former SNL favorite Dana Carvey. This was a wake up call from other, completely not funny shows that were on at the time. This show could have been a revitalization of comedy that was a change from a sitcom starring Jerry Seinfeld. Things didn't quite go as planned.

At first, the show was supported by many major corporations due to Dana Carvey's credentials. The first show changed that. It featured sketches that were incredibly funny, but they were a bit offensive. From this, numerous sponsors backed down from the show.

In the second episode, they toned down the sketches a little bit, but still people were still not satisfied with how funny the show was. I guess too many people felt threatened by this show. Having a show that is actually funny to be on primetime was too much of a shock after hit shows like Mad About You and Friends.

The third episode was pretty much the same style of humour, still incredibly funny, too funny to be on TV. By this time, people who liked shows that were not funny were too taken aback by this that they said "This has to stop!"

Why am I talking about each episode individually? Because that's it! That's as long as the show lasted! That's it! Throughout this decade they have tried to take funny shows off the air, and while they didn't succeed with Mystery Science Theater 3000, and they won't succeed again this time, they did succeed with the Dana Carvey show. This could have been the sketch comedy show of the future, but no, people would rather watch an unintelligibly unfunny show like Mad TV.

-Z. Merritt
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Very Funny.
OrangieTooDope24 April 2017
I just recently discovered this show and I really like it.It is a bit dated though.It's full of current event and political references that were before my time but I just google the people they talk about and then the jokes are hilarious.It's really weird to see Steve Carell and Stephen Colbert twenty years ago.Colbert looks especially strange.For reasons I don't understand the first five episodes of this show have a different title that includes a sponsors name.Even stranger is that they seem to make fun of each sponsor.In the Mt. Dew episode Dana tries to get a guy to say it looks like pee.I assume that's why the last two had no sponsor and probably why it was canceled.I have to say that this show proves that Dana Carvey is funnier and edgier than I could have ever imagined from watching his terrible movies.If you can find this, you should watch it.
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I'm mad as hell and I'm not going to take it....
coffeebuzz_7784 February 2005
The Dana carvey show....a tear comes to my eye when i think about what it could have been. I'm 20 yrs. old and remember my father telling me about this show and the controversy after the first episode. This is when i started to watch it and every episode was a treat,to get sappy like my grandmothers apple pie. The show was something to look forward to throughout the week and finally get a dose...like a drug. The skits ranged from skinheads of Maine to grandma the clown, from maddone to the wizard of oz missing scene, to hell, the Chinese restaurant being the main sponsor of the show! I want a second dose...but i think it cant be picked up and done again, mainly because after seeing the master of disguise and like most comedians after children they loose their art form and just get plain stupid and uncreative...like Elton john coming out of the closet. PLEASE RELEASE ON DVD...BETA? ill take it on beta for god sake. and I'm not a fanatic, but drew Carey will never be looked at the same way, after he filled in for the best comedy skit show ever. All in the family will make the best sitcom.
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Brilliant -- and too good to last
PrometheusTree6419 December 2015
I saw THE DANA CARVEY SHOW during its initial run, in a great time slot after ROSEANNE, and I said to myself: "it'll never last -- it's just too damned funny, and prime time TV won't permit that."

And it was, indeed, screamingly funny.

Sadly, I was right.

Its ratings were never the disappointment they claimed in order to justify their canceling it (and replacing it with yet another lame, safe sitcom).

One wonders what ABC thought THE DANA CARVEY SHOW would be.

Some people look at it today and wonder where the "controversy" in the show was. But it's not even that or the topicality.

It was just too funny. And that uniqueness is what got it noticed -- and then canned.
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That other post seems to be forgetting something
codydarling21 March 2004
If anyone else remembers the show, then you might remember that Dana made fun of the sponsors for the first 10 minutes of every show (at least that's my memory) Don't you remeber when, right after a mountain dew commercial, he made 3 minutes of mountain-dew-looks-like-p**s jokes? And as we all know from his movie Wayne's World, you don't make fun of the sponsors and get away with it. He had new sponsors every week, and pretty soon nobody would touch his show. Gee, what do you think happens next? Sponsors pay for the show. nobody pays to air the show, the show DOESN"T AIR. don't say that ABC is afraid of letting too much funny out, it's ABC. they needed funny (and they still do) more than [some clever analogy here].

This show is off the air because Dana Carvey expected it, wanted it, and wanted to have fun with it before it got pulled. He wouldn't have messed with the sponsors so much if he didn't want the show to be yanked, he did it anyways because it was insanely funny. That is comedic genius. Not "master of disguise."
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