Garry Shandling is the Father of Cringeworthy TV

Norman Weiss
TV Tattle

Garry Shandling is the father of Cringeworthy TV

The Office, Veep, 30 Rock, Curb Your Enthusiasm and The Comeback all owe a debt to Shandling. As Hank Stuever notes, thanks to Shandling, “what had at first seemed an acquired taste became a second language. Now it seems everyone has an innate sense for the cringeworthy, not just comedians. We all sometimes act as if we’ve 'gone meta,' speaking to mockumentary cameras that aren’t really there, continuously breaking the fourth wall of life, narrating the strange and awkward details of our private and public encounters. Though we didn’t see much of him in his final years, you could sense and hear a little bit of Shandling everywhere – not just on TV but in the monologues that flow when you simply ask a spouse or a friend: How was your day?” PLUS: Shandling was like a female comic, these 10 shows wouldn’t exist without Larry Sanders, Shandling kvetched about his performance during a 1995 Larry Sanders taping,  the Seinfelds spent Thursday "crying/laughing/crying” recalling Jerry’s day filming Comedians in Cars with Shandling, Showtime to re-air Shandling’s Inside Comedy and Green Room episodes, Shandling had an early version of Larry Sanders in 1984, listen to Shandling’s 2011 WTF interview with Marc Maron, Larry Sanders is one of those shows you have seen without actually watching it, and the real genius of Larry Sanders was getting celebrities to play unflattering versions of themselves.


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