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John Candy

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SCTV (1976-1984 TV Series)




John Candy:  I'm a fan of a great many comedians, but John Candy is the only one I can consider my "comedy idol".  He had the timing, and the acting talent.  John would've been funny if he was skinny, but it just so happened he was chubby and the comedy lent to it.  Whenever John Candy came out with a new movie, it was like a big event.  And when he died in 1994, it was all too soon and I was crushed.  There will NEVER be another John Candy.  So many "funny fat guys" have been passed off on us like they're the next one, and some of them have been pretty good (Chris Farley and Artie Lange, to name a few), but NONE of them have the capability of John Candy.  I love Candy's work and hope you feel the same.

SCTV (1976-1984 TV Series):  This is the show where Candy "got his start".  You hear that expression so often, and it's rarely true.   He did other shows before this one, but SCTV is where he first received a lot of mainstream attention.   And his popularity from this ground-breaking, sketch-comedy series kicked into gear a long string of highly successful comedy feature films.

Original Characters:

Billy Sol Hurok- One of my top-favorite John Candy characters!  Billy Sol is one of the two crazy farmers that likes to see people get blown up in movies.  Every week they blow up a different guest.  Candy's facial expressions and loud, crazy southern voice cracks you up long before the hilarious "guest" impersonation.

Skits To Watch For:
Any of the "Farm Film Report/Farm Film Celebrity Blow-Up" skits!

Butch Grant-  A spoof of the Lou Grant character of "The Lou Grant Show" fame.  John Candy does Ed Asner as an aged, overgrown elementary school bully in charge of the school newspaper.  Funny!

Skits To Watch For:
The Butch Grant Show

Dr. Tongue-  Dr. Tongue, the evil scientist, is the embodiment of all B-horror movie cheese!  There are a lot of Hollywood characters/personalities blended into this one.  I'd have to say his look is very Bela Lugosi "Dracula."  His voice is extremely Vincent Price with maybe a taste of Boris Karloff.  This is a funny character, and he's even funnier when they put him in behind-the-scenes skits where he still goes by the name of Dr. Tongue.  Sidekick Bruno, however, goes by his real name of Woody Tobias, Jr.

Skits To Watch For:
Dr. Tongue & His Animal Friends
Dr. Tongue's 3-D House of Stewardesses

Giorgy-  There's not much to the character, but he's still incredibly funny.  John Candy as a Russian.  You know that's gotta add up to laughs!  Giorgy doesn't say much, he just makes things happen!  "He's everyone's favorite Cossack!"

Skits To Watch For:
Hey, Giorgy! [Part of the Russian shows storyline]

Harry, The Guy With The Snake On His Face-  This is another one of my top favorite John Candy characters.  Harry is such a deviate!  An admitted sex pervert.  Hey, at least he's honest about it!  Doesn't make him any less sleazy, though.  It's rare to make a character like this likable, but John does it.  His portrayal of Harry is brilliant!

Skits To Watch For:
Any of the Harry skits!

Incredible Bulk-  It's a spoof of the live-action TV show of "The Incredible Hulk."  This had to be a hard character to create and make ridiculously funny.  Then you have Catherine O'Hara as a blue she-bulk, long before the comic book character of She-Hulk was even created.  This is funny stuff.  Andrea Martin, however, probably has the funniest moments of anybody in this sketch.

Skits To Watch For:
The Incredible Bulk

Johnny LaRue-  It's his signature character and probably his most popular, next to Billy Sol Hurok.  This was actually my least favorite John Candy character.  He's too mean and nasty.  The world is already filled with terrible human beings.  Plus, I don't think it's at all what John Candy was like in real life.  I think he probably created this character to vent life's frustrations.  It would be fun to play a character like this, but to watch in a comedy vein I don't know.  Johnny LaRue does have his moments, though.  I like the early Johnny LaRue skits the best, where he was just a happy drunk and not so mean.  After the character was established, though, LaRue served best as a bit character in skits.  I liked the women he always had around him.

Skits To Watch For:
Cooking With LaRue: Poor People
Dining With LaRue: Gangsters

Dining With LaRue: Lin Ye Tang
Exercise With LaRue
Mr. Science

Magnum, P.E.I.-  A spoof of "Magnum, P.I."  "Set against the exotic backdrop of Prince Edward Island," a hefty Canadian version of Magnum hunts down potato robbers!  As soon as you see John Candy in the Magnum clothes, you're gonna laugh yourself silly!

Skits To Watch For:
Magnum, P.E.I. [Part of the Canadian TV shows storyline; Sid Dithers Janitorial Strike]

Mayor Tommy Shanks-  This character has his moments, but he needs to be in skits with other characters to be funny.  By himself, he's too bland.  Tommy Shanks is a mental case.  He feeds and drags around a stuffed dog.  The mayor of Melonville has his share of problems.  His funniest moment is when he attacks newsman Earl Camembert!

Skits To Watch For:
Christmas Episodes: Lighting of the Melonville Christmas Tree
News: Children's Milk Fund Scandal
News: Shanks Boy Missing

Mike Chisel, Small Town Dick-  A spoof of detective character Mike Hammer.  The name of "Small Town Dick," you will see, is an obvious double-meaning.  SCTV often did things like this to see how far they could go without getting slammed by the censors.  It's definitely daring, and quite funny.  But even if they didn't call him Small Town Dick, Mike Chisel is still a really funny character.  A complete schmutz.  It's kind of like an early version of "Who's Harry Crumb?"

Skits To Watch For:
Small Town Dick

Rowdyman-  The Canadian "wildman."

Skits To Watch For:
The Rowdyman [Part of the Canadian TV shows storyline; Sid Dithers Janitorial Strike]

Stefan Sealy-  So many 12-year-olds, even today, actually talk like this!  The combination of that and his wild red hairdo is enough to guarantee laughs!

Skits To Watch For:
Any Stefan Sealy appearance with or without Pre-Teen World.

Steve Roman-  The once hunky, now chunky, action movie star.  At one time married to screen legend Merle Oberon, Steve is not the brightest bulb in Tinseltown.  He thinks he's awfully talented, despite being an obvious hack.  This is such a great, funny character!

Skits To Watch For:
Brock Linahan Stars In One: Steve Roman

William B. Williams-  His main function is butt-kisser for talk show host Sammy Maudlin.  He's a definite play on real talk show sidekick Ed McMahon.  William B. has his funny moments, but basically he's a supporting character.  He's told regularly that he's a second banana and a no-talent and you can always tell when it unnerves him.  William B. is at his funniest when he gets drunk or when he otherwise gets abused on the set of the Sammy Maudlin Show.

Skits To Watch For:
Sammy Maudlin's 23rd Anniversary Special
William B. Williams Show

Yosh Schmenge-

Skits To Watch For:
Any Schmenge Brothers skit you can find!

Impersonations:

Alfred Hitchcock-

Babe Ruth-

Curly Howard-

Divine-

Herve Veleschaiz-

Luciano Pavarotti-

Meat Loaf-

Merlin Olsen-