I was very sad to hear of the passing of Greg Giraldo at age 44. I remember his short-lived sitcom and his appearances on Colin Quinn’s “Tough Crowd” before he became known as one of the Roast Comedians (along with Jeff Ross and Nick Dipolo).
Many of the people I follow on twitter are his friends. I had just happen to go to TMZ even before Harvey tweeted about the death.
denisleary Greg Giraldo: massively talented. Good guy. Heartbreaking.
RobRiggle RIP Greg Giraldo…. I’m so bummed out right now. You brought the funny man….
Joan_Rivers Greg Giraldo-what can I say? I’m very angry. What a waste of comedic talent. I liked him so much and am sorry for his children and family.
alexcharak RIP Greg Giraldo
pattonoswalt Just went way out of my way not to drive past Laugh Factory. If I see Giraldo’s name on that marquee, gonna lose it.
louisck Greg giraldo was a good guy. The kind of you’re always glad to see. Also a funny comic and person. He died today. Goodbye friend.
thebrianposehn Very sad to hear one of my favorite comics, Greg Giraldo didn’t pull through. Nothing but nice things to say about that guy. I’ll miss him.
bobsaget Greg Giraldo. Love and peace. So fucking funny.
pattonoswalt Really, Universe? Greg Giraldo? Fuck off.
TMZ has learned … the comedy club where Greg Giraldo was scheduled to perform this weekend is now putting together plans for a memorial instead, featuring a tribute to the late comedian’s life.
The manager at Governor’s Comedy Club in Levittown, NY tells TMZ, the memorial is scheduled for Friday at 10:30 PM … exactly when Greg was supposed to take the stage.
We’re told the club will be playing Greg’s DVDs on the televisions — there won’t be any admission fee … and all donations will go to Greg’s family.
The manager tells us, “We just want to commemorate his life.” As we previously reported, Greg passed away yesterday … five days after he was hospitalized for an overdose.
Say it aint so- Steve Carrell is leaving The Office!?!
Steve Carell said his contract with The Office runs through next season, and said that he’s not sure if he’ll renew for any additional seasons.
It’s hard to imagine Dunder Mifflin without Michael there doing…well…what he does. He is like a boss, except that most bosses actually complete tasks, and he is like a co-worker, minus the work. Much of the humor relies on Michael being the joke.
Steve we beg you, DON’T GO. Dunder Mifflin needs you, Pam and the gang need you, and most importantly, WE NEED YOU!!
Andrew Koenig’s Body Found in Vancouver
Koenig’s body was found in Stanley Park about noon, Vancouver police said. Friends of Koenig initiated their own search of the park and invited his father, Star Trek alumnus Walter Koenig, along. His body was found in a densely wooded area where it initially was unseen from the path.
Search and rescue teams had scoured the park Wednesday and found no evidence that Koenig had been there recently. The park was known to be one of the actor’s favorite spots when he lived in the city in the early ’90s.
“My son took his own life,” Walter Koenig said, trying to keep his composure at a news conference Thursday night. “The only other thing I want to say — I’ve already said what a great guy he was, and good human being — he was obviously in a lot of pain.”
The Vancouver police would not give details on cause of death but “have no reason to believe that foul play was involved at all,” Constable Jana McGuinness said. The case has been turned over to the British Colombia coroner’s office.
Koenig’s father went on to mention “hundreds of e-mails” he had received from depressed people and their loved ones and express hope this tragedy would help them.
“If you’re one of those people who … can’t handle it anymore,” he said, breaking down in tears, “if you can learn anything from this is that there are people out there that really care. You may not think so, and … ultimately, it may not be enough. But there are people who really, really care. And before you make that final decision, check it out again. Talk to somebody. And to families who have members who they fear are susceptible to this kind of behavior, don’t ignore it, don’t rationalize it. Extend a hand.”
Koenig’s mother, Judy Levin-Koenig , echoed those sentiments: “There is love out there.”
The 41-year-old Venice, Calif., resident was last seen by friends Feb. 14 during a visit to Vancouver. Friends and family reported him missing Feb. 16, when he did not return to Los Angeles as scheduled.
The Koenigs previously held a news conference at the Vancouver Police Department on Wednesday afternoon. They were later scheduled to appear on Larry King Live to discuss their missing son, but walked off the set moments before their segment because of “personal reasons,” according to Walter Koenig’s website.
Koenig is best known for his role as Boner, the best friend of Kirk Cameron‘s Mike Seaver, on Growing Pains and appeared frequently from 1985 to 1989. During the search for Koenig, Cameron told People he was “praying for his family during this time of distress and for his safe return.”
Koenig also appeared in various TV shows, including Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, My Two Dads and 21 Jump Street. He dabbled in directing and writing as well, with a 2004 short called Woman in a Green Dress.
Andrew Koenig‘s family is keeping hope alive, but they remain “very, very worried” about him.
“We’re all kind of a mess as you might guess,” Koenig’s sister, Danielle, told E! News Tuesday when our cameras caught up with her outside CNN headquarters in Los Angeles, where she was interviewed for Larry King Live.
While Koenig, who was last seen by friends on Feb. 14, is said to have suffered from depression, Danielle said that the last time she saw her brother, he was “acting normal.”
“I spoke to him briefly via email, maybe around the 5th or 6th of February,”
she said. “And I saw him January 31st, for several hours.
“He was acting normal,” she added. “But he’s suffered from depression for many years. He didn’t seem particularly depressed. We were there for a birthday and he seemed all right.”
Danielle said that she doesn’t know whether or not her brother gave his landlord 30 days’ notice on his Venice, Calif., apartment—but that if he did indeed clear out, she hopes he was merely relocating.
“I hope that’s what he was doing. I hope that was it,” she said.
Authorities say that Koenig’s trail went cold on Feb. 16, the last day he used his credit cards or cell phone. He had been booked on a flight from Vancouver to Los Angeles, but he never boarded the plane.
Vancouver police are still expressing hope that Koenig is alive, but none of the tips they’ve recieved have panned out.
“A good lead would lead to them finding him,” Danielle said. “So I guess none of the leads have been fruitful yet. I certainly encourage anyone who thinks they’ve seen him to call the Vancouver Police Department and talk to Constable Ralla and Detective Payette and tell them what they know.”
Her continued hope that Andrew is out there somewhere is why Danielle has been talking to the press in the first place.
“This is not comfortable being on camera like this,” she told E!. “It’s not something any of us want to do. But we really appreciate people caring. I read the Facebook stuff and everyone’s been incredibly supportive. And that does help.”
Actor, producer, director, writer, editor, photographer…. Andrew Koenig –
Walter’s 41 year old son – has been missing since February 14th.Andrew Koenig was last seen on Valentine’s Day, February 14, 2010,
in Vancouver, British Columbia. Andrew Koenig never boarded his
flight back to the US, on 2/16 and he hasn’t heard from since.
Andrew was last seen at a bakery in
the Stanley Park area of Vancouver. If you’ve seen Andrew since February 14th, PLEASE contact
Detective Raymond Payette of the Vancouver PD at
“Men of a Certain Age” TNT, Monday nights at 10 pm
“The Middle” ABC Wednesday nights
Ray Romano, Scott Bakula, and Andre Braugher play old time friends in different stages of their lives. Ray Barone is gone. I was still uncomfortable watching “Joe” have sex. I kept expecting to see Doris Roberts burst in with a plate of spaghetti.
Joe is recently divorced from the never-recognizable Penelope Ann Miller. He has two kids and his interaction with them and their peers is also very entertaining. Joe grows from his conversation with a boy bothering his teen aged daughter. At first you think he’s going to kick the boys ass but he actually sees himself in the kid and gives him some great advice. Then, tells him if he doesn’t leave his daughter alone, he’ll kick his ass.
Scott Bakula plays the swinging man-whore. He dates different woman, sleeps with many and never settled down. As he ages he seems to be realizing that he’s missing something. His buddies have kids and responsibilities but all Terry has is Terry. Owen (Braugher) told Terry that the reason he’s always late is because he never slows down enough to actually LOOK at himself in the mirror. Interesting analysis of his friend.
Owen is probably the deepest character of the show. He has a happy marriage with a strong woman but he works for his father, an ex NBA star. His father never will think Owen is “good enough” and he treats his son worse than the other employees because he wants to make sure nobody thinks he’s playing favorites. It’s very sad to watch the interaction with Owen’s father and Owen’s children. It gives you a glimpse into his childhood and it was full of criticism and perfection. His marriage is one of the best things about this show. They are cute, playful and also respectful and supportive of each other. Nice to see a good marriage on TV. We don’t see enough positive examples of marriage.
On the other hand, watching Patricia Heaton on “the Middle” is refreshing compared to the logical Debra on “Everybody Loves Raymond.” She drinks, she ignores her kids, she drinks, she works outside the home and she has an attitude that would have made Ray Barone cry. Her husband is played by the “Scrubs” janitor, Neil Flynn and I still need a few more episodes to determine how I feel about him. The kids are great. REAL kids with issues. The youngest boy reminds me of Dewey on “Malcolm in the Middle” and the teen-aged girl is a great actress. The episode with her school picture retakes was hysterical. How many of us just cannot take a decent school picture? My kid is one of them but I never went for the retakes.
It’s great to see Ray Romano and Patricia Heaton leave Ray and Debra Barone behind. I wish them luck in both shows. I knew Patricia was an actress but never realized that Ray was an “actor.” I’m very impressed with his work on “Men of a Certain Age.”
6 Christmas Episodes Worth Mentioning
by Kara Kovalchik – December 18, 2009 – 11:51 AM
Holiday episodes tend to be a bit generic. How many times can you rework A Christmas Carol or The Gift of the Magi into a sitcom plot? Here are a smattering of episodes worth mentioning either because they’re rare, different or doggone it, because I just like ‘em.
Bewitched had many traditional Christmas episodes during its eight season run, but 1970’s “Sisters at Heart” was controversial enough to require a special introduction by Elizabeth Montgomery at the behest of the show’s sponsor, Oscar Mayer:
The plot that was making the network so jumpy was young Tabitha’s desire to be sisters with her African-American friend, Lisa. In order to make them look alike, Tabby zaps black polka dots onto her flesh, and white ones on Lisa’s. No doubt the episode would still be controversial today, thanks to Tabitha’s brief appearance in blackface. The original story was submitted by a 10th grade English class at L.A.’s Thomas Jefferson High School.
2. Gilligan’s Island
“Birds Gotta Fly, Fish Gotta Talk,” the Christmas episode of Gilligan’s Island, was primarily a clip show. The castaways are understandably miserable spending the holiday away from home, on a desert island where even a year-old fruitcake would be more appetizing than yet another coconut cream pie. They reminisce about their first days on the island via carefully selected scenes from the pilot—carefully selected because the characters that eventually became the Professor, Mary Ann and Ginger were played by different actors in that episode.
The gang’s gripe session is interrupted by a visit from Santa Claus, who looks and sounds suspiciously like the Skipper. Santa reminds them that they’ve got a reason or two to be merry this Christmas—at least they’re all alive and thriving. And, most importantly, they genuinely like one another and live together like a family. At the same moment Jolly St. Nick makes his exit stage right, the Skipper arrives stage left. Who was that bearded man?!
3. Green Acres
This episode provides a new twist on the “longing for an old-fashioned Christmas” trope. Oliver Wendell Douglas wants to celebrate the holiday as the American Farmer of yore—to go out with axe in hand and chop down his own tree, and to decorate it with popcorn from his own corn crib. Of course, nothing is ever that simple in Hooterville. First he finds out that there is a conservation law in effect that prohibits him from cutting down trees, even on his own property. Then he is unable to work up any outrage among his neighbors, who prefer the “modern” method of buying an artificial tree from Drucker’s Store, complete with spruce spray squeezers, imitation sap oozers, strings of wax popcorn and fiberglas candy canes.
4. The Simpsons
Even though it was actually the eighth episode produced, “Simpsons Roasting on an Open Fire” was the first full-length episode of the series to air. It was broadcast on December 17, 1989, and it certainly set the tone for the rest of the series. It’s Christmas time, and Bart decides that a “Mother” tattoo would delight and surprise his mom. Marge catches him in the tattoo parlor at the “Moth” stage and has to blow the family’s entire Christmas present budget on a laser removal procedure. Homer’s expected Christmas bonus doesn’t come through, so he takes a job as a department store Santa to earn extra money. When Bart climbs in his lap, he utters “I’m Bart Simpson, who the hell are you?” for the first time. In a last-ditch attempt at raising cash, Homer goes to the dog track and bets on a long shot named Santa’s Little Helper. The sluggish greyhound lost the race, but won a new home with the Simpson family.
5. The Mary Tyler Moore Show
Nothing starts those visions of sugarplums dancing like Lou Grant barking “Three French hens!” And how many chances do we get to see Mary Tyler Moore sporting a World War I German spear-head helmet? Sue Ann Nivens, The Happy Homemaker, is taping her Christmas show (“Holiday Yummies from Worldwide Tummies”) in early November. A sudden snowstorm has stranded the WJM newsroom staff, so Sue Ann enlists them to flesh out her dinner table. The only problem is that Murray, Ted, Lou and even gentle angelic Mary have been sniping at each other all day in a series of petty arguments and no one is in a festive mood.
6. All in the Family
“The Draft Dodger” first aired in 1976, four years before President Jimmy Carter granted amnesty to those men who’d fled to Canada to avoid conscription into the military during the Vietnam War. David Brewster, a draft-dodging pal of the Meathead, has been living in Canada but decides to risk a visit to the U.S. in order to spend the holidays with his old friend (since his own father refuses to see him). Meanwhile, Archie has invited his old friend Pinky Peterson (whose only son died in Vietnam) for Christmas dinner. Mike and Gloria struggle to keep David’s fugitive status a secret from Archie, but once it’s revealed, it results in a heated debate. Archie, a World War II veteran who served his country when called, argues that no one wants to go to war and get killed, but a true American obeys his government. Pinky, on the other hand, believes that if his son was still alive he’d welcome David at the dinner table. A poignant and thought-provoking episode that in many ways is still relevant today.
Loyal readers know the drill: now is the time to tell me which episodes I omitted, why my taste stinks, or what they love about the shows mentioned herein. Oy to the World and a Happy Festivus to all!
Please visit Mental Floss for more of Kara Kovalchik’s columns.
Posts by Kara:
6 Christmas Episodes Worth Mentioning
by December 18, 2009 – 11:51 AM
6 Christmas Firsts
by December 14, 2009 – 10:44 AM
The Island of Misfit Christmas Specials
by December 10, 2009 – 9:50 PM
5 Other Famous Gate Crashers
by December 4, 2009 – 2:19 PM
I’d rather watch Dustin, Alex and Greg than a nerd with a bunch of ugly puppets any day. They need a TV show on Comedy Central.
OMFG Watch THIS one. I’m laughing so hard I have tears rolling down my face!
Here’s the original Drunk Guy Going for a Beer
I “accidentally” clicked on my drcoolsex bookmark and decided to poke around and watch more than their Jon and Kate parodies. I didn’t get “Meet the Putties” but “Mario Cart Movie” was cute and played on ESPN. Most of us that follow these guys know that their last Jon and Kate video was over-the-top, offensive and not posted by most of us. Big Whooop! One video we didn’t like. I still think these guys are hysterically funny and need to be recognized by a larger audience.
by Kara Kovalchik – November 25, 2009 – 11:10 AM
What does Thanksgiving mean to you? Is it a day of gathering together with beloved family members to share a bountiful repast, or is it the chore of getting up at six o’clock in the morning to shove croutons up a dead turkey while the rest of the family slumbers contentedly? Wherever your emotions fall in the overall Thanksgiving spectrum, we hope to give you some temporary relief by revisiting some of our (and hopefully your!) favorite TV turkey moments.
1. Cheers reveals what Vera Looks Like (Briefly!)
In the “Thanksgiving Orphans” episode, most of the regulars who frequent Cheers have no special plans for Thanksgiving, so they accept Carla’s invitation to a potluck dinner held at her home, with Norm in charge of bringing the turkey. Norm, however, unskilled in the nuances defrosting a bird before roasting it, brings an enormous frozen turkey to the party. Tempers begin to flare when it seems like the turkey will never be ready, and a food fight breaks out. Norm’s oft-mentioned but never seen wife, Vera, arrives during the melee, but before viewers can get a good look at her, she receives a pie in the face. So, who played Vera? That role was given to George Wendt’s real-life wife, Bernadette Birkett.
2. The Drunken Origin of the Bob Newhart Drinking Game
TV Guide rated the “Over the River and Through the Woods” episode of The Bob Newhart Show at #9 of the 100 Greatest Episodes Ever. It’s also Newhart’s personal favorite. Emily is going home to Seattle for Thanksgiving and Bob decides to stay home because his “patients might need him” (when in reality he can’t bear the thought of skipping stones across Puget Sound with his in-laws). His friend Jerry brings a large jug of vodka and cider, and starts taking slugs from it every time his alma mater (William and Mary) is scored against during the Big Game. Joined by Bob’s neighbor and a patient, the quartet plays the drinking game throughout several more televised football games until they realize that they should probably eat something. Bob drunkenly tries to order Chinese food on the phone:
“I’d like some Moo Goo Gai Pan. What do you want, Jerry?”
“I, too, want the Moo Goo Gai Pan.”
“Another Moo Goo…Goo Goo…”
“Bob! You said ‘Moo Goo Goo Goo!’”
“Maybe I’m ordering Chinese baby food!”
This episode inspired the “Hi, Bob” drinking game, where participants down a shot every time those words are spoken during an episode of the show.
3. WKRP’s Strange (and True) Turkey Day Promotion
Arthur Carlson, the station manager on WKRP in Cincinnati, longs to play more of an integral role in daily operations. So, in the “Turkeys Away!” episode, he secretly plans a special Thanksgiving promotion – dropping live turkeys out of a helicopter over the Pinedale Shopping Mall. The station’s earnest but clueless news reporter Les Nessman is on the scene reporting live, and at first states that skydivers are jumping out of the copter. But when no parachutes open…he suddenly realizes that he is witnessing live turkeys hitting the ground “like sacks of wet cement.” Mr. Carlson hadn’t intended any animal cruelty; “As God is my witness,” he states after the event, “I thought turkeys could fly.” Oddly enough, this episode was based on an actual radio station promotion that one of the show’s writers had witnessed. The stunt was inspired by an annual “turkey drop” festival held in Yellville, Arkansas, which was finally halted in 1989 after animal rights activists got wind of it.
4. Will and Grace struggle to Keep the Story Straight
Will and Grace fans learned the entire back story of all the main characters in the “Lows in the Mid-Eighties” episode (which originally aired as a one-hour special in November 2000.) Flash back to 1985, when Columbia student Grace brings boyfriend Will home with her for Thanksgiving. After dinner, Grace is all hot and bothered when they retire to her bedroom, but Will feels conflicted and rushes to the bathroom to call Jack, whom he’d met briefly earlier that day. Jack has already correctly noted that Will is gay, which Will vehemently denied at the time. “If you’re all hot for your girlfriend, then why are you on the phone with me?” Jack asks him. In addition to clarifying quite a bit, the show does bring up one inconsistency. This episode briefly shows Diane, the only woman with whom Will was intimate, but she’s a redhead played by a writer’s assistant. In a later episode, Diane is portrayed by blonde Academy Award-winning actress Mira Sorvino.
Since you’re probably reading this at work while marking time until the long weekend begins, why not chime in with your favorite Thanksgiving TV episodes?