7.8/10
123
8 user 1 critic

Steve Martin: Comedy Is Not Pretty (1980)

Steve Martin's second NBC special was done entirely in sketches. Highlights include: Marty Robbins' "El Paso" with monkeys; "The Death of Socrates;" and "Bizarre Oddities of the World."

Director:

Joseph Cates
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Cast

Credited cast:
Steve Martin ... Himself / Various
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Marty Allen ... Igor
Richard Deacon ... King of Cey What
Joyce DeWitt ... Love God's Date
Phil Foster ... Pyramid Owner
Peter Graves ... TV Director
Werner Klemperer ... Plato
Meredith MacRae ... Hippie
Gary Mule Deer ... Hippie
Louis Nye ... Laundry Customer
Regis Philbin ... Public Service Announcer
Carl Reiner ... Sportscaster
Paul Reubens ... Cafe Counter Guy
Dick Schaap Dick Schaap ... Sportscaster
Noah Tutak Noah Tutak ... Kid run over by steamroller
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Storyline

Steve Martin's second NBC special was done entirely in sketches. Highlights include: Marty Robbins' "El Paso" with monkeys; "The Death of Socrates;" and "Bizarre Oddities of the World."

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy

Certificate:

Not Rated
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

14 February 1980 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Aspen Film Society See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The special was produced without a laugh track, more like a film. See more »

Quotes

Steve Martin: [as Socrates] It was always: "Socrates, what is truth? Socrates, what is the nature of the good? Socrates, what should I order? Socrates, what are you having?" And not once did anyone ever say: "Socrates, hemlock is poison!"
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Hirut Hoot 5th Anniversary Video (2017) See more »

Soundtracks

Lullaby of Broadway
(uncredited)
Music by Harry Warren
Danced by Steve Martin at the end
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Flashes of Brilliance
17 August 2009 | by jbtd-1See all my reviews

I watched this special when I was very young, but to this day, my family will still occasionally reference the incredulous Socrates when he learns that hemlock is poisonous: "iiiiiit iiiiiiis?" The diver with the tuna fish sandwich also stands out, as it appealed to my sister's and my childish humor, as does the swimmer in the slow lane.

I can't believe that anyone could be offended by the steamroller PSA, as one poster mentioned, unless they have lost a loved one to a drunk driver. Even then, the setup is so outlandish, and the flattened little boy is so cartoonish, that I can't see anything to get riled up about. When I saw the steamroller bit in Austin Powers, it immediately made me picture Steve Martin hamming it up as he tried to stop the steamroller, and the little boy just standing in front of it for what seemed like an eternity.

I'd love to watch the full special again to see how it stands up today, but, as others have mentioned, it's hard to come by.


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