When I think back on television comedy shows when I was younger, there are some true standouts...The Red Skelton Show, The Jack Benny Show, The Burns and Allen Show, and, of course...
The Carol Burnett Show cannot be overlooked. In 278 episodes from 1967 to 1978 she provided us with great shows, big laughs, and incredible talent. Her cast of regulars included Vicki Lawrence, Harvey Korman, Tim Conway, and Lyle Waggoner. The genius of the show was that Carol gave her cast and guests the freedom to use their talents to the utmost; the result was pure bliss. And don't forget those amazing costumes by Bob Mackie.
To my mind, Burnett and Korman were the bedrock of the show. When Tim Conway joined the troupe his job mainly appeared to go off script and crack up the others. Vicki Lawrence learned to hold her own and to become outrageous. Lyle Waggoner was there for his good looks.
As with any variety show, different bits will appeal to different people. For the most part I didn't care for Momma's Family; Kitty never cared for Tim Conway's shuffling old man. But some things worked perfectly for us. One such were the skits about The Queen:
One of Tim Conway's greatest moments was breaking up the cast in a Momma's Family skit:
And here Tim Conway makes Harvey Korman totally lose it:
Here's one of the ultimate classics: "Went With the Wind."
For more today's overlooked film/television/whatever, Give out a big Tarzan yell and go to Todd Mason's blog, Sweet Freedom.