The George Carlin Show
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The George Carlin Show
The George Carlin Show
The cast sitting on stairs outside a door
Promotional image of the cast members from The George Carlin Show
GenreSitcom
Created byGeorge Carlin
Sam Simon
Written bySam Simon
Directed byJeffrey Melman
Rob Schiller
Sam Simon
StarringGeorge Carlin
Alex Rocco
Paige French
Anthony Starke
Christopher Rich
Susan Sullivan
Mike Hagerty
Theme music composerChandler Travis
Composer(s)Roger Boyce
Country of originUnited States
Original English
No. of seasons2
No. of episodes27
Production
Executive George Carlin
Sam Simon
Jerry Hamza
Michael Stanislavsky
CinematographyGregg Heschong
Editor(s)Brian K. Roberts
Camera setupMulti-camera
Running time22-24 minutes
Production Sweet Freedom Productions
Main Sequence
Warner Bros. Television
DistributorWarner Bros. Television Distribution
Release
Original networkFox
Original releaseJanuary 16, 1994 (1994-01-16) -
July 16, 1995 (1995-07-16)

The George Carlin Show is an American sitcom that aired Sunday at 9:30 pm on the Fox network from January 1994 to July 1995. It was created jointly by Sam Simon and the show's namesake, comedian George Carlin.[]

Synopsis

The action was centered on George O'Grady (George Carlin), a taxicab driver living in New York City. Most of the scenes took place in The Moylan Tavern, owned and run by bartender Jack Donahue (Anthony Starke), who had inherited the establishment from his father. The setting's real-life basis was the actual, now-defunct Moylan Tavern, a bar that existed during Carlin's childhood on Broadway between La Salle Street and Tiemann Place in the Morningside Heights neighborhood, and owned by the grandparents of film critic and author Maitland McDonagh.[1] As Carlin recalled in 1994, "It was where I saw Oswald shot. It was where I headed during the [1965] blackout. The Moylan is where I came of age."[2] The name of the show's bartender character, Jack Donahue, was taken from that of real-life owner Jimmy Donahue, who bought the bar from the original owners.[2] The set itself, however, resembled another upper-Broadway bar, Carlin said: "Cannon's--where my father used to drink."[2]

Cast

Main

  • George Carlin as George O'Grady, a New York city cabdriver and regular patron of The Moylan Tavern
  • Alex Rocco as Harry Rossetti, George's best friend, an ex-con bookie
  • Paige French as Sydney Paris, waitress at The Moylan, and aspiring model/actress
  • Anthony Starke as Jack Donahue, bartender/owner of The Moylan
  • Christopher Rich as Dr. Neil Beck, a plastic surgeon who is quite unlike the blue-collar Moylan regulars
  • Mike Hagerty as Frank MacNamara, a working-class Moylan's regular

Recurring

The following characters appeared in at least 5 episodes:

  • Susan Sullivan as Kathleen Rachowski, a pet-shop owner and George's girlfriend
  • Phil LaMarr as Bob Brown, a friend of George's during season 1
  • Matt Landers as Larry Pinkerton, an ex-cop who lives in George's building and hangs out with George at The Moylan
  • Iqbal Theba as Inzamamulhaq Siddiqui, a fellow cabdriver of George's

Note that while Sullivan appeared in publicity cast photos, she appeared in only 7 episodes, receiving "Special Guest Star" billing in the closing credits.

Episodes

Season 1 (1994)

No.
overall
No. in
season
Title Directed by Written by Original air date
11"When Unexpected Things Happen to George"Sam SimonStory by : Sam Simon
Teleplay by : George Carlin & Sam Simon
January 16, 1994 (1994-01-16)
Dr. Neil Beck, plastic surgeon and new denizen of the Moylan Tavern, loses a bet to George. Unable to come up with cash on the spot, he gives George his dog as payment--a Yorkshire terrier he renames Miles, after jazz great Miles Davis.
22"George Sees an Airplane"Sam SimonSam SimonJanuary 23, 1994 (1994-01-23)
Driving Dr. Beck to his home in Connecticut, George sees what looks like a U.F.O. in the sky. In attempting to convince his fellow Moylan patrons that he saw it, his sanity is questioned.
33"George Goes on a Date: Part 1"Sam SimonSam SimonFebruary 6, 1994 (1994-02-06)
George decides to ask pet-shop owner Kathleen Rachowski out on a date, over 8 years after his last real relationship.
44"George Goes on a Date: Part 2"Sam SimonSam SimonFebruary 13, 1994 (1994-02-13)
George's date with pet-shop owner Kathleen is interrupted when he discovers his dog Miles has run away.
55"George Helps Sidney"Steve ZuckermanHeide Perlman & Sam SimonFebruary 20, 1994 (1994-02-20)
George encourages Sydney to jump-start her languishing modeling career. As she is about to leave The Moylan for a hard-won interview with an agency, George accidentally hits her in the nose with a billiard ball, leaving her temporarily disfigured. Undaunted, she arrives for the interview.
66"George Expresses Himself"Rob SchillerStory by : Sam Simon
Teleplay by : George Carlin & Sam Simon
February 27, 1994 (1994-02-27)
George lands an appearance on the local TV news to rebut a recent on-air editorial that he feels is hypercritical of cabbies. However, he ends up delivering a rebuttal that is different than the one he'd initially planned.
77"George Gets Some Money"Sam SimonMaria SempleMarch 6, 1994 (1994-03-06)
George takes a fare who is passed-out drunk on an hours-long ride around Central Park. His friends call his ethics into question when he nets over $600 for the fare.
88"George Destroys a Way of Life"Jeff MelmanBrian Pollack & Mert RichMarch 20, 1994 (1994-03-20)
The obsessed cinephiles of an abruptly closed classic-movie revival house descend upon The Moylan to drown their sorrows, commandeering the television for several nights, much to the consternation of the sports-loving regular clientele.
99"George Loses His Thermos"Rob SchillerJim McCoulfMarch 27, 1994 (1994-03-27)
George brings his prized Thermos into The Moylan. When it disappears, he accuses his friends of stealing it, much to their dismay.
1010"George Digs Rock 'n' Roll Music"Rob SchillerBrian Pollack & Mert RichApril 10, 1994 (1994-04-10)
George attempts to help once-famous but now down-and-out musician Tommy Rawlins (guest star Brian Doyle Murray) to regain some self-respect and get back on his feet.
1111"George Speaks His Mind"Rob SchillerJim McCoulfApril 24, 1994 (1994-04-24)
After an encounter with his ex-wife in his cab, George, now in a very dark mood, runs afoul of an undercover inspector from the New York City Taxi and Limousine Commission, drawing a citation for using profanity on the job. He goes before the commissioner in a hearing to plead his case.
1212"George Looks Down the Wrong End of a .38"Jeff MelmanRobert Rabinowitz & Ronald WinterMay 1, 1994 (1994-05-01)
George is driving Dr. Beck to the Moylan Tavern when a desperate criminal hijacks the taxicab. The cowardly Beck escapes, leaving George to fend for himself.
1313"George Plays a Mean Pinball"Jeff MelmanDennis Carlin & Patrick CarlinMay 8, 1994 (1994-05-08)
After learning the hard way that Kathleen is the better pinball player, George's views of feminism are challenged.
1414"George Lifts the Holy Spirit"Sam SimonAndrew Nicholls & Darrell VickersMay 15, 1994 (1994-05-15)
Harry steals a shipping truck containing a statue of Jesus Christ in the cargo area, then enlists a reluctant George to help him hide it.

Season 2 (1994-95)

No.
overall
No. in
season
Title Directed by Written by Original air date
151"George Gets a Big Surprise"Jeff MelmanAndrew Nicholls & Darrell VickersOctober 16, 1994 (1994-10-16)
George discovers he has a son, and takes him ice fishing.
162"George Runs Into an Old Friend"Jeff MelmanJonathan Aibel & Glenn BergerOctober 23, 1994 (1994-10-23)
George intercepts a package meant for his neighbor (guest star Tommy Chong) which turns out to contain marijuana, and attempts to get rid of it.
173"George Goes Too Far"Jeff MelmanSpike FerestenOctober 30, 1994 (1994-10-30)
George is caught on hidden camera cheating a fare who turns out to be an investigative reporter from the local TV news. The footage is aired, and George must deal with the fallout.
184"George Gets Hoist by His Own Petard"Jeff MelmanJim McCoulf & Jeff LowellNovember 6, 1994 (1994-11-06)
George becomes concerned when Sydney and Dr. Beck decide to begin dating, and chaperones them on an evening visit to Beck's parents' mansion.
195"George Pulls the Plug"Jeff MelmanKelly Carlin-McCall & Bob McCallNovember 27, 1994 (1994-11-27)
George is inexplicably given power of attorney over a stranger who is in a coma, and must decide whether or not he is taken off life support.
206"George Gets Caught in the Middle"Jeff MelmanJim McCoulf & Jeff LowellNovember 27, 1994 (1994-11-27)
Harry's wife (guest star Adrienne Barbeau) blackmails George in an attempt to find out if and with whom Harry is having an affair.
217"George Really Does It This Time"Jeff MelmanRobert BordenDecember 6, 1994 (1994-12-06)
228"George Shoots Himself in the Foot"Brian K. RobertsJim McCoulf & Jeff LowellDecember 11, 1994 (1994-12-11)
239"George Does a Bad Thing"Rob SchillerStory by : Roger Garrett
Teleplay by : Jim McCoulf & Jeff Lowell
December 25, 1994 (1994-12-25)
2410"George Puts On a Happy Face"Jeff MelmanRick CunninghamDecember 25, 1994 (1994-12-25)
2511"George Helps a Friend"Rob SchillerPatrick CarlinJanuary 1, 1995 (1995-01-01)
2612"George Tells the Truth"Jeff MelmanJeff LowellJuly 9, 1995 (1995-07-09)
2713"George Likes a Good War"Jeff MelmanJim McCoulfJuly 16, 1995 (1995-07-16)

George Carlin's criticism

Carlin noted on his website:

January, 1994 - "The George Carlin Show" premieres on Fox Television. Lasts 27 episodes. Lesson learned: always check mental health of creative partner beforehand. Loved the actors, loved the crew. Had a great time. Couldn't wait to get the fuck out of there. Canceled December, 1995.[3]

He later elaborated in his posthumously published autobiography Last Words:

I had a great time. I never laughed so much, so often, so hard as I did with cast members Alex Rocco, Chris Rich, Tony Starke. There was a very strange, very good sense of humor on that stage...The biggest problem, though, was that Sam Simon was a fucking horrible person to be around. Very, very funny, extremely bright and brilliant, but an unhappy person who treated other people poorly...I was incredibly happy when the show was canceled. I was frustrated that it had taken me away from my true work.[4]

He went on to speak in the book of not enjoying the committee-style writer's room, which he felt alienated anyone who was not a professional television writer.

Simon in 2013 addressed Carlin's comments, saying:

I think the cancellation [of the show] affected George's attitude towards the work in retrospect, because he was always just a complete doll [to work with], and I know that he had some bitterness... that I heard later on. Which made me feel really bad, because we got along really well, I loved him, and I consider it a very special period of my life... He was just fantastic.[5]

Reception

The show received an approval rating of 88% on review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes, based on eight reviews.[6] Todd Everett of Variety, gave the show a positive review, saying: "The Moylan Tavern -- and Carlin's aging hipster character translates well to the sitcom stage. This is the comic without much of the acid that frequently flows in his standup routines. It's a half hour that's easy to take, and Carlin fans won't be disappointed."[7] David Hiltbrand of People Magazine, also gave a positive review of the show, saying: "The sitcom's flavor is somewhat bland, with just a whiff of desperation about it. But the mix of characters is likable, and how many Fox shows can you say that about?"[8]

References

  1. ^ Pollak, Michael. "F.Y.I." (Sunday "The City" section), The New York Times, December 30, 2007
  2. ^ a b c Lovece, Frank (February 16, 1994). "Going, Going, Gone? Carlin goes for home run with comedy series that resembles his real life". Newspaper Enterprise Association – via Reading Eagle.
  3. ^ "1990-1999". GeorgeCarlin.com. Archived from the original on 2009-01-30.
  4. ^ Carlin, George, with Tony Hendra (2009). Last Words. Free Press / Simon & Schuster. p. .CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)
  5. ^ Simon in Herman, Karen (April 13, 2013). "Sam Simon: Writer, Producer". Archive of American Television. Retrieved .
  6. ^ "The George Carlin Show (1994 - 1995)". Rotten Tomatoes. Fandango. Retrieved 2019.
  7. ^ https://variety.com/1994/film/reviews/the-george-carlin-show-1200435322/
  8. ^ https://people.com/archive/picks-and-pans-review-the-george-carlin-show-vol-41-no-3/

External links


  This article uses material from the Wikipedia page available here. It is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.

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