Billy, Norman & George Laugh

On the other hand, there’s Still Laugh-In: The Stars Celebrate, which dropped last week on Netflix.  The almost unbearable 3+ hours of taping at the Dolby Theatre were magically distilled into an entertaining one-hour special, ending with a number of priceless outtakes.  I should confess that I am prominently seen sitting in the front row with Norman Lear and Laugh-In creator George Schlatter (stills can be found on  To share a lesson in Television 101, I’ll repeat a story from the taping.  About two hours into the show, a weary Lear leaned over and said to Schlatter, “Can you believe – we created being funny on television?”  A just-as-weary Schlatter replied, “Yeah, and they’re KILLING it!”  He added, “But we can fix it in post”.  Let that be a lesson to all of you out there – having great material is important, but you need someone really talented to make it watchable.

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