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NBC's 75th Anniversary, What a Disaster! (1 Viewer)

Dave Miller

Supporting Actor
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859
Who produced this show?! Was this thing live?! Most of the show literally felt like a cross b/w a bad night on SNL and the People's Choice Awards. Everything was just falling flat. The audience didn't know when to clap, people couldn't read their lines, music cues were off, and punch lines were just not funny. If it wasn't live, then that was truly terrible editing.
Jerry had a great monologue, but then it went downhill in a hurry with only two exceptions: 1)Bob Newhart's exchange w/ Kelsey Gramar and Conan's intro to Johnny's segment. Every other studio bit and moment was painful to watch. A few that I recall:
*Martin Short singing theme songs was sooooo bad, and I really like Martin.
*Ending the NBC news segment with the stories on the WTC collapse and then having Mr T rant about who he pities. Who was sitting in an office a couple of months ago thinking "That will flow well."
*What was the point of the all the uncomfortable "Here's the cast of ..." moments? To show how poorly some people have aged or to advertise how skilled Hollywood plastic surgeons are. Do we bow? Do we bow together? Do we thank people no one will know? What was this!
*The pinnacle was Babara Walters speaking about her days at NBC when her mic was not working. Someone gives her a handheld mic which also doesn't work.
Don't get me wrong, I loved seeing the clips from the NBC shows over the years. That's not what I was disappointed in. As a matter of fact, if they had cut out all the junk I refer to above, they could have provided us w/ twice the clips. A fitting tribute to NBC's 75 years would be to have an in studio show w/o the audience with a couple of different stars to intro each decade / segment. How ironic that the show produced to celebrate great NBC television was flat out awful! :thumbsdown:
Peace,
DM
 
Joined
Dec 10, 1999
Messages
49
I too thought this show "stunk". Your'e right, if they just showed clips with a narrator that would have been fine. Now I know why Johnny Carson didn't want to do it. He didn't want to be a part of any back slapping self congratulatory fest. I thought is was real sad when they introduced Sid Cesar and had him hobble out with a cane so he could wave to the crowd and then cut away to Bob Newhart. Tasteless and poor planning.IMHO

Stephen Teffner
 

Marty M

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Yes, this show was live. It even went over about 15 minutes. The show would have been much better if they had just stuck with clips of shows.
 

Steve K.H.

Supporting Actor
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Jan 11, 2002
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I watch about 15 minutes of it...

Low points... Sid coming out, the Friends gang looking like they rehearsed for 5 minutes and then the Cheers gang talking for 1 minute and looking VERY uncomfortable.

Whoever produced this better have their resume up to date.
 

Brad Porter

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But that's not all...
Other bad moments:
1. Ted Danson says Woody, Kirstie, and Nick couldn't be there because they were all off having more fun doing something else (of course I'm paraphrasing). This was fine. But then he continued and said that they didn't age as well as the rest of the cast. Considering that Nick has been DEAD for more than 15 years, this comment didn't go over well.
2. The closing credits were shown with 30 Rockefeller Plaza in the background erupting with fireworks. Something about flames and smoke emerging from a tall building in NYC isn't as entertaining as it used to be.
3. The show was geared towards showing the successful shows on NBC, with an occasional reference to the godawful shows. There was very little discussion of the "good" shows. They should have mentioned the Peabody award winning shows that didn't exactly bring in the ratings. I would have liked at least one "Freaks and Geeks" clip.
4. They spent 10 or more minutes doing the audience interview talking about all of the shows that they weren't going to talk about. In this span of time, they could have talked about those shows!
5. I realize the topic has been covered in other specials, but I expected an SNL retrospective at some point with the cast members gathering on the stage. They had the current cast and I noticed Chevy Chase, Garrett Morris, and of course Martin Short throughout the evening. This show really could have used a Bill Murray lounge singer intro at some point.
6. Although the timing was bad, I did laugh at Mr. T's pity list - especially when he slammed Screech. :)
Brad
 

Win Joy Jr

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Apr 12, 2002
Messages
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Actually, I THINK it was cut short by 15 minutes. Acording to my guide data on DirecTV, the show was scheduled to run until 11:30PM EDT.

And I thinks it WAS written and produced by SNL...
 

Jefferson

Supporting Actor
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Apr 23, 2002
Messages
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I still have my vhs of the NBC Anniversary Show from 1985....Amazingly, many of the "golden age" clips were almost exactly the same. Just to jog the memory bank, that show had THREE cheesy song and dance production numbers ("Its NBC, its-for-you-and-me-come-on-in-and-see", etc) starring the likes of Michael Landon, the cast of the Cosby Show, etc. So, I found this to be a mild improvement.....emphasis on mild. :)
 

TonyD

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when they were showing clips of bad shows ..ome of them was jeff altman ...wasn't it? did he have a show. i always thought he was very funny whatever happened to him?
 

MatthewA

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And then one of the Friends gang has the nerve to say "Guys, we are Cheers." Not by a long shot kiddo, I couldn't disagree more.
Amen to that. I was hoping George Wendt would sit on them "accidentally." If this were CBS, it would be the equivalent of Baby Bob doing a tribute to Bob Newhart.

I particularly disliked everybody standing for Michael J. Fox; the hokiest event of the night. It reminds me of the 1996 Oscars when Christopher Reeve got a 2-minute standing ovation just for being quadriplegic.

And some of the clips had really poor picture quality. The clip from "Diff'rent Strokes" looked like it was taken from second- or third-generation VHS, and the 1950s stuff looked particularly dreadful. I know they only exist as kinescopes now, but could they at least have the copyright holders do better telecine work on them?

At least they admitted how they occasionally bombed, but I couldn't get over the omission of "My Mother the Car" in the montage of NBC fiascos.

I see now why Johnny Carson, Justine Bateman, Bea Arthur, and others neglected to show up. Especially Bea, when you see how embarrassed her fellow "Golden Girls" looked in the theme song montage.

I could go on about other issues, but they may violate HTF policy.

I would have preferred a straight clip show.
 

Jim DiJoseph

Second Unit
Joined
Dec 13, 1999
Messages
271
The show was indeed produced by Lorne Michaels.

And I felt much the same as everyone else on this thread. Some laughs, but many more uncomfortable moments:

Bill Cosby - WTF?

Sid Caesar - at the beginning, it was like they just threw him out there, then the camera shoots by him without a word. He made up for it at the end, though. Classic comedian!

Cheers gang - same here, Brad. When Danson mentioned that Nick couldn't make it and was off doing other things, I thought, well he's been dead for about 15 years, how weird was that comment?

Friends gang - even in person, they've outstayed their welcome.

The Golden Girls and Short telling them to shut up while he was singing - alrighty then.

There were times that I was entertained, but this could have really been done SO much better...egad.
 

Chris Lock

Second Unit
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Jul 1, 1999
Messages
258
> I thought is was real sad when they introduced Sid Cesar and had him hobble out with a cane so he could wave to the crowd and then cut away to Bob Newhart.
Yeah, that looked like a screwup, but Sid's gibberish tribute to people who've died was weird. My guess is they cut to Newhart too early, & that Sid was supposed to have done his bit then. Why bring Sid out & immediately cut to someone else, then have Sid do a bit later?
Best part: probably seeing Don Adams again. Reminds me of the need to release Get Smart on DVD.
 

Jefferson

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No, that Sid thing was not a screw up, since they continued to march people out all evening, and just stand them there, staring at us, saying absolutely nothing............I'll admit that was weird, so...I guess you could call that a format screw up.
 

Dave Miller

Supporting Actor
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Sid was recently on an episode of "Whose Line" and he's still got it. Funny guy.
Maybe if they ever release this on DVD, there could be a seamless branching feature included that would just show us the clips. ;)
Peace,
DM
 

Christopher P

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Dec 28, 1998
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564
Yeah I didn't sit through much of this either. Nothing worse then seeing industries applaud themselves. In this case, 75 years is a milestone of sorts, and should have been acknowledged, but this was pretty bad.
Even though the act is a little worn, I still laughed out loud at Mr T's pity list. Especially the way he was wearing more jewelry than normal, sort of a self-pardoy. And when he gave up trying to pronounce that girl's name from Providence......:laugh:.
Chris
 

TonyD

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Pink Lady and Jeff (1980). A variety show hosted by Japanese singing duo Pink Lady, who didn't speak English, and American comic Jeff Altman, who didn't speak Japanese. It flopped. Go figure.
found that posted on another forum.
 

Jesse Skeen

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Pink Lady and Jeff is available in its entirety on DVD, including the final unaired episode! Am I the only one who actually bought this? :b
 

KevinJ

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i'm surprised they didn't show any midnight special footage...or did they and i missed it?
 

Brad Porter

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I forgot to mention the way too long clip of Michael Jackson lip-synching "Billie Jean" and dancing from either the American Music Awards or the Grammys. They ran through about 40 seconds of it during a transition to commercial. It always bugs me because it sounds like he's singing "the chid is not my son". What's a "chid"?

Brad
 

MatthewA

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Jesse,

I bought this. I sat through all six episodes and I felt like some sort of a circus geek for doing so. It's that bad.
 

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