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It's Garry Shandling's Show: The Complete Series

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Product Details

  • Actors: Garry Shandling
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Full Screen, NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 16
  • Rated: Unrated
  • Studio: Shout! Factory
  • DVD Release Date: October 20, 2009
  • Run Time: 1860 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (24 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #169,849 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "It's Garry Shandling's Show: The Complete Series" on IMDb

Special Features


Editorial Reviews

Product Description

For The First Time On DVD, All 72 Episodes Of Garry Shandlings Groundbreaking First Television Series

. . . audacious, satirical, hip, sophisticated and wonderfully silly, and often miraculously all of the above at the same time. TV Guide

Before the Internet, before reality TV, no one saw what television could be more humorously and with more vision than Garry Shandling. In 1986 Garry Shandling was poised to become a permanent guest host on Johnny Carsons The Tonight Show. Instead, he took a chance on an offer from fledgling cable network Showtime to create his own television series. No questions asked.

A surreal look at the daily life of a young single man who is a comedian, Its Garry Shandlings Show was not a typical sitcom: Shandling would break the fourth wall to include the studio audience and the viewers at home in on the actual making of the show. Experimenting with the sitcom form meant inviting the audience onto the set, playing with the passage of time and generally exploding the genre and making art of the debris.

Teaming up with Saturday Night Live writer Alan Zweibel, the two men put on a fourth-grade play every week for four seasons. With a crew of talented young writers (including Tom Gammill, Max Pross, Al Jean, Michael Reiss, David Mirkin, who would go on to write Seinfeld and The Simpsons, and Ed Solomon, who wrote Men In Black), television history was made. Over the years, guest stars (playing themselves) included Tom Petty, Rob Reiner, Vanna White, Red Buttons, Dan Aykroyd, Martin Mull, Gilda Radner (in her last TV performance), Carl Reiner, Chevy Chase, Red Buttons, Jeff Goldblum, Don Cornelius, The Turtles, Los Angeles Mayor Tom Bradley and more.

From its unforgettable theme song to its closing credits, Its Garry Shandlings Show was award-winning, mind-bending television for four seasons, and its influence is clearly seen in the best TV comedies through the decades to follow.

Bonus Features:

* 6 Featurettes With Cast, Crew and Writers
* It Only Looks Easy: Episode Outtakes
* Original Promos
* 18 Commentaries
* And More!


It doesn't get more meta than Jerry Carbone's irresistible theme song to this game-changing 1986 sitcom that paved the way for The Simpsons and Seinfeld (several of the writers went on to work on those series), Curb Your Enthusiasm, 30 Rock, and others. Broadcast on Showtime to critical acclaim and later on Fox to abysmal ratings, It's Garry Shandling's Show is an audaciously original self-reverential sitcom starring Shandling as endearingly vain, insecure, and whiny standup comedian Garry Shandling, whose life is a sitcom. ""You must lead a very interesting life,"" someone observes in season 4. ""No, I don't,"" Shandling responds, ""and it's been a stumbling block through the whole series."" From the opening monologue in each episode to asides that thoroughly demolish the fourth wall between performer and the audience (""You didn't get to meet Jackie last week because we hadn't cast her yet""), It's Garry Shandling's Show turns the sitcom format on its head. Most times the actors go about their business, and other times, their characters, too, get in on the postmodern act. ""Thanks a lot for the big part in the show this week, Uncle Garry,"" a character sarcastically comments in one episode. In other surreal developments, Shandling one time departs for New York to star in a new cop series, leaving his show to be fronted by venerable comedian Red Buttons. At one point, audience members make themselves at home on the set while Shandling is out, and at the beginning of season 4, the network president (Richard Fancy, the future Mr. Lippman on Seinfeld) disapproves when Shandling announces his new girlfriend (the charming Jessica Harper) will be joining the cast. He suggests instead that Shandling hire a butler (a comic premise to which Seinfeld later paid homage when Jerry and George pitched their own sitcom to NBC in the fourth season).

Comedy greats, old and new school, from Steve Allen to Martin Mull and Chevy Chase, appear as themselves. An episode to cherish is ""Mr. Smith Goes to Nam,"" which features the last television appearance of Gilda Radner, whose final wink to the camera is perhaps reason enough to purchase this set. Others include the prodigious bonus features, including outtakes, a series retrospective, and very honest commentaries (writers Al Jean and Mike Reiss likewise express reservations about giving Shandling a steady love interest, ""a conventional sitcom move for an unconventional sitcom""). It's Garry Shandling's Show enjoys a mystique among comedy buffs, but it has not been seen in syndication or ever been released on home video. How does it hold up? As Shandling's mentor, comedy club owner Mr. Peck (Danny Dayton), describes Shandling's first stage appearances, ""It's as good today as it was in those days."" He did not mean it as a compliment; we do. --Donald Liebenson"

Customer Reviews

Factory who always produce high quality box sets.
Jazz Man
Usually when a joke doesn't hit it's intentional and watching the reactions of a bad joke can be just as funny as the really good jokes.
C. Gregory
We have waited and hoped for years for this set to come out!

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

43 of 49 people found the following review helpful By Jazz Man on October 8, 2009
Format: DVD
What's the problem here?

Not sure why anyone could think the listed Amazon price is too high. Here's the facts:

1) This is a 16 disc complete set loaded with brand new extras.

2) It's from Shout! Factory who always produce high quality box sets.

3) It retains all the guest stars and music. For every guest star that walks into Garry's home, the producers of this set have to negotiate with them or their estate. This costs a lot of money. Now they could have gone the inexpensive way and eliminated scenes, certain music, even entire episodes. But they didn't.

4) It's a landmark cult TV series that probably wouldn't be seeing the light of day if not for the folks at Shout! Factory.

I agree that it is a lot to shell out. But as a fan who has very fond memories of this blowing my mind 20+ years ago, it's a small price to pay to have the the entire complete series in one big box with Shandling's participation. This set is certainly a specialty item and not one to appeal to a mainstream audience. It's aimed at the serious collector of the offbeat and unusual.

With all that in mind I'm looking forward to this set and have no problem shelling out around $100 to show my support for this wonderfully creative show. Who knows, maybe good sales will encourage Shout! Factory to tackle 'The Complete Larry Sanders Show' next?
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20 of 25 people found the following review helpful By C. Gregory on August 5, 2009
Format: DVD
Obviously this isn't out yet, so this review isn't about the set it's about the show. I remember some of Gary Shandling's standup from specials I had watched on late night tv. So when I heard Fox was gonna run episodes of this after Married With Children I figured I'd see what the show was about. He didn't seem like the perfect choice for a show, he was hilarious in standup but I wasn't sure how an actual show would pan out. I didn't have cable at the time so it wasn't until Fox started showing it that I got my first glance. Some people I had heard talk about it, said it was hilarious, while others said they just didn't get it. Gary's humor can be a bit dry at times, but he's usually pretty funny. So I decided to find out for myself. I'm glad I did. The sitcom within a sitcom idea was a bit quirky but worked. Generally, though if you watched the series week to week you would be rewarded with more running jokes/gags. Stuff casual watchers may not pick up on. The only other series I ever watched that got rid of the fourth wall was the Monkees and they were funny too. But, this show picks up on that idea where it left off and pushed it to the limits without really being over the top. The jokes were great, the actors were all in on the joke, and gave great performances. There really isn't much to dislike by the show. If you are a fan of comedy, I mean a true fan you will at least enjoy this show if not love it. Gary's jokes, like I said can be a bit dry, but they are clever and hit the mark every time. Usually when a joke doesn't hit it's intentional and watching the reactions of a bad joke can be just as funny as the really good jokes. I do not understand why anyone would say at $2 an episode it's not worth it. Not because of the show itself but because tv shows can be overpriced.Read more ›
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By N. Nayar on December 8, 2009
Format: DVD
This is one of my ATF shows ever!!! And keep in mind I watched this show when it was Fox in 1987 and I was 9. Sure, the adult humor I didn't get, but the audience interaction and the 4th Wall that he broke was something I did get. So when the DVD went on sale, I got it for myself as a gift to myself.

What I liked:
-all the episodes in tact; FOX viewers might remember these were edited, and even during it's 2am run on LIFETIME TV, they were chopped up further. But all episodes are shown since not all of em aired unless you had SHOWTIME.
-semi-decent dvd menu, sound quality is just about average, but loved the features and commentary from the cast.
-great dvd case and covers. Good conversation piece if placed on bookshelf
-the shows!!! groundbreaking. My top three are: Garry and Jeff Goldblum, Grant goes to Hollywood, and when they're waiting for the Schumaker baby to arrive. Great comedy, laughs, and you really get to see the inner workings of a great comedian pre-Larry Sanders. Some great one-liners throughout. When it rains, it pours. Morton Salt, we salute you!!!
-EXCEPTIONAL cast and guest stars: Scott Nemes, cameos from Tom Petty and Rob Reiner, and especially seeing Gilda Radner(bittersweet)

Why no fifth star:
-price!!! still a lot at 100-150+. Maybe divided it up into volumes at $20-40 each.
-would've been great is if they had the GS 25th anniversary special(loved that parody special)
-video-wise, straight from TV, nothing had been upgraded or restored.

So for Garry Shandling or Larry Sanders fans, I'd check it out!!! Although a bit expensive, it's worth it to have the entire series!!!
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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Thelonious on January 14, 2010
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
I caught a few fleeting glimpses of this show in reruns on broadcast TV many years ago. At the time I was avoiding anything that smacked of "appointment television" so I never followed it, but things stuck in my mind for years - in particular, I caught the episode where garry turns on his own show on TV (which is live footage of him watching himself watching himself) and quickly proclaims "It's just a guy watching TV - who wants to watch that?....Oh, that's me!" - the sheer meta-ness of that stuck with me. So I welcomed the chance to see the show from the beginning.

These DVDs are superbly produced and packaged, picture and sound are clear and there are interesting extras (though I'd have loved more - where is the 25th Anniversary Special, the bridge to the Larry Sanders show?).

That said, I do think the price is a bit high. It's a fun show, but not always great - some episodes are kind of flat and I winder if I'll go back and watch many of them a second or third time. In contrast, I'd gladly pay these prices for Larry Sanders, but that show was much more densely packed and stands up much better to repeated viewings.

Bottom line: The show is well worth seeing and these DVDs are superbly produced, but as an investment I think it's really for die-hard fans until/unless the price drops.
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I would bet good money that this is the only DVD format this ever comes out on.
Oct 24, 2009 by DVD Maker |  See all 4 posts
Three Times Funnier?
I don't think this this been out on DVD before. Are you thinking of 'The Larry Sanders Show'?
Aug 17, 2009 by Jazz Man |  See all 2 posts
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