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The Kids in the Hall Pick Their Top Ten Sketches of All Time, Part 3

The Kids in the Hall Pick Their Top Ten Sketches of All Time, Part 3 (photo)

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It’s Wednesday, which means only two more days until the Kids in the Hall return to television. Let me hear a heck yeah! As we wile away the hours waiting for the eight-part miniseries ‘Death Comes to Town’ to kick off, we are counting down the favorite sketches of the Kids in the Hall as chosen by the Kids themselves. HECK YEAH!

Today, since we are bad at math, we have a special hump day surprise: FOUR EPISODES. Who said being crap at division couldn’t be fun?

Up first, French Fur Trappers. Kevin and Dave star as Francois and Jacques, French fur trappers who find their game in the richest field possible: The corporate office.

Next, Dipping Areas. Long before Iron Chef made the art of presentation a challenge unto itself, the Kids took a shot at lampooning what goes on inside the kitchen during the preparation of haute cuisine.

Then it’s on to Will Do where Kevin McDonald plays Dean, a man with a supernatural ability to just not care, while at the same time eliciting endless patience from others with his amiable nature.

Final installment of our foursome is My Pen. The classic piece where Bruce plays an office drone who is overly attached to a certain office supply.

The Kids in the Hall miniseries Death Comes to Town starts Friday at 10 p.m. ET with back-to-back episodes.

Soap tv show

As the Spoof Turns

15 Hilarious Soap Opera Parodies

Catch the classic sitcom Soap Saturday mornings on IFC.

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Photo Credit: Columbia Pictures Television

The soap opera is the indestructible core of television fandom. We celebrate modern series like The Wire and Breaking Bad with their ongoing storylines, but soap operas have been tangling more plot threads than a quilt for decades. Which is why pop culture enjoys parodying them so much.

Check out some of the funniest soap opera parodies below, and be sure to catch Soap Saturday mornings on IFC.

1. Mary Hartman, Mary Hartman

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Mary Hartman, Mary Hartman was a cult hit soap parody from the mind of Norman Lear that poked daily fun at the genre with epic twists and WTF moments. The first season culminated in a perfect satire of ratings stunts, with Mary being both confined to a psychiatric facility and chosen to be part of a Nielsen ratings family.


2. IKEA Heights

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IKEA Heights proves that the soap opera is alive and well, even if it has to be filmed undercover at a ready-to-assemble furniture store totally unaware of what’s happening. This unique webseries brought the classic formula to a new medium. Even IKEA saw the funny side — but has asked that future filmmakers apply through proper channels.


3. Fresno

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When you’re parodying ’80s nighttime soaps like Dallas and Dynasty , everything about your show has to equally sumptuous. The 1986 CBS miniseries Fresno delivered with a high-powered cast (Carol Burnett, Teri Garr and more in haute couture clothes!) locked in the struggle for the survival of a raisin cartel.


4. Soap

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Soap was the nighttime response to daytime soap operas: a primetime skewering of everything both silly and satisfying about the source material. Plots including demonic possession and alien abduction made it a cult favorite, and necessitated the first televised “viewer discretion” disclaimer. It also broke ground for featuring one of the first gay characters on television in the form of Billy Crystal’s Jodie Dallas. Revisit (or discover for the first time) this classic sitcom every Saturday morning on IFC.


5. Too Many Cooks

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Possibly the most perfect viral video ever made, Too Many Cooks distilled almost every style of television in a single intro sequence. The soap opera elements are maybe the most hilarious, with more characters and sudden shocking twists in an intro than most TV scribes manage in an entire season.


6. Garth Marenghi’s Darkplace

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Garth Marenghi’s Darkplace was more mockery than any one medium could handle. The endless complications of Darkplace Hospital are presented as an ongoing horror soap opera with behind-the-scenes anecdotes from writer, director, star, and self-described “dreamweaver visionary” Garth Marenghi and astoundingly incompetent actor/producer Dean Learner.


7. “Attitudes and Feelings, Both Desirable and Sometimes Secretive,” MadTV

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Soap opera connoisseurs know that the most melodramatic plots are found in Korea. MADtv‘s parody Tae Do  (translation: Attitudes and Feelings, Both Desirable and Sometimes Secretive) features the struggles of mild-mannered characters with far more feelings than their souls, or subtitles, could ever cope with.


8. Twin Peaks

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Twin Peaks, the twisted parody of small town soaps like Peyton Place whose own creator repeatedly insists is not a parody, has endured through pop culture since it changed television forever when it debuted in 1990. The show even had it’s own soap within in a soap called…


9. “Invitation to Love,” Twin Peaks

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Twin Peaks didn’t just parody soap operas — it parodied itself parodying soap operas with the in-universe show Invitation to Love. That’s more layers of deceit and drama than most televised love triangles.


10. “As The Stomach Turns,” The Carol Burnett Show

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The Carol Burnett Show poked fun at soaps with this enduring take on As The World Turns. In a case of life imitating art, one story involving demonic possession would go on to happen for “real” on Days of Our Lives.


11. Days of our Lives (Friends Edition)

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Still airing today, Days of Our Lives is one of the most famous soap operas of all time. They’re also excellent sports, as they allowed Friends star Joey Tribbiani to star as Dr Drake Ramoray, the only doctor to date his own stalker (while pretending to be his own evil twin). And then return after a brain-transplant.

And let’s not forget the greatest soap opera parody line ever written: “Come on Joey, you’re going up against a guy who survived his own cremation!”


12. Acorn Antiques

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First appearing on the BBC sketch comedy series Victoria Wood As Seen on TV, Acorn Antiques combines almost every low-budget soap opera trope into one amazing whole. The staff of a small town antique store suffer a disproportional number of amnesiac love-triangles, while entire storylines suddenly appear and disappear without warning or resolution. Acorn Antiques was so popular, it went on to become a hit West End musical.


13. “Point Place,” That 70s Show

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In a memorable That ’70s Show episode, an unemployed Red is reduced to watching soaps all day. He becomes obsessed despite the usual Red common-sense objections (like complaining that it’s impossible to fall in love with someone in a coma). His dreams render his own life as Point Place, a melodramatic nightmare where Kitty leaves him because he’s unemployed. (Click here to see all airings of That ’70s Show on IFC.)


14. The Spoils of Babylon

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Bursting from the minds of Will Ferrell and creators Andrew Steele and Matt Piedmont, The Spoils of Babylon was a spectacular parody of soap operas and epic mini-series like The Thorn Birds. Taking the parody even further, Ferrell himself played Eric Jonrosh, the author of the book on which the series was based. Jonrosh returned in The Spoils Before Dying, a jazzy murder mystery with its own share of soapy twists and turns.

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15. All My Children Finale, SNL

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SNL‘s final celebration of one of the biggest soaps of all time is interrupted by a relentless series of revelations from stage managers, lighting designers, make-up artists, and more. All of whom seem to have been married to or murdered by (or both) each other.

The Way Back Machine: The IT Crowd Edition

The Way Back Machine: The IT Crowd Edition (photo)

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Hear ye, hear ye: There’s a new episode of The IT Crowd airing tonight at 10 p.m. ET! Before we see episode two of the fourth series, we thought we would take a look back at where it all started. Back when Moss was just a wee lad living at home with his mom …oh, wait. Back before Jen knew anything about networking computers and un-jamming printers. …Hmmm. Back before Roy had any luck with the ladies? Nope, that doesn’t work either. Well, The IT Crowd hasn’t changed that much since the first series, but here is our favorite clip from episode one, Yesterday’s Jam, any way.

The IT Crowd airs at 10 p.m. tonight. Miss our interview with Graham Linehan, creator, writer and director of The IT Crowd? Read it here.

The Kids in the Hall Pick Their Top Ten Sketches of All Time, Part 2

The Kids in the Hall Pick Their Top Ten Sketches of All Time, Part 2 (photo)

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We are continuing our countdown to the premiere of the Kids in the Hall’s much anticipated return to television. The eight-part miniseries Death Comes to Town starts on Friday at 10 p.m. with back to back episodes. Since we’re not ones for delayed satisfaction, we are posting the Top Ten Best Kids in the Hall Sketches of All Time, selected by the Kids themselves. (You can see yesterday’s selections here.)

Up first is Buddy Cole – Girls of Summer, when Buddy tries to give up smoking, he finds himself drawn to coaching a women’s softball team. Never one to be trapped by labels or gender lines, Buddy proves to be the “natural” choice to save the game. The sketch features Scott Thompson in possibly the best Buddy costume of the character’s run.

Then we have one of the most classic Kids in the Hall sketches of all time. That’s right, Head Crusher- Face Pincher. Mark McKinney’s beloved Head Crusher becomes alarmed when he discovers that his intended targets have already had their heads squashed. The culprit is the Face-Pincher, played by Kevin McDonald with the perfect ying to Mark’s yang. The duel between the two characters is both hilarious and a masterpiece of television photography.

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