Judd Apatow insists the world remember how important Garry Shandling was

Early in the first part of The Zen Diaries Of Garry Shandling, director Judd Apatow mentions how he had a habit—even before Shandling died—of reminding people that “most of modern comedy originated with Garry, that he inspired so many people.” Apatow’s two-part documentary about his friend and mentor spends more than…

5 episodes that highlight the biting backstage humor of The Larry Sanders Show

In 5 To Watch, five writers from The A.V. Club look at the latest streaming TV arrivals, each making the case for a favored episode. The reasons for their picks might differ, but they can all agree that each episode is a must-watch. In this installment: The Larry Sanders Show, which will be available for streaming on…

Why didn’t Garry Shandling’s brilliant schtick translate to movies?

As the past few weeks of heartfelt memorials have demonstrated, Garry Shandling was a towering force whose influence is reflected across the modern comedic landscape. As the creator of the It’s Garry Shandling’s Show and The Larry Sanders Show, he can be traced as one of the pioneers of both the current era’s age of…

Smash Mouth meets The Larry Sanders Show in a brilliant minimalist mashup

Two simple, monosyllabic words: “Hey now.” A meaningless expression, many would argue. And yet those two little words carry so much pop cultural weight. “Hey now” was the contrived on-air catchphrase of Hank Kingsley, the sad sack sidekick portrayed so vividly by Jeffrey Tambor on HBO’s The Larry Sanders Show. Much to…

The best sitcom episodes of the last 25 years (part 1)

The television sitcom underwent a renaissance in the mid-to-late 1980s, shocked back to life by the likes of Cheers, The Cosby Show, Murphy Brown, and Newhart. While those series worked within the multi-camera confines of ’70s success stories from MTM Enterprises and the Norman Lear factory, other, woolier programs…

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