If you like your tv time to be a bit more productive, I highly recommend, "Make 'Em Laugh: The Funny Business of America." The three DVD collection is a documentary that discusses the funniest moments in American entertainment. Hey, American History that could be alot of fun to discuss at the water cooler or at a happy hour!
Make 'Em Laugh is hosted by Billy Crystal and narrated by Amy Sedaris. The six-hour series contains snippets of performances, biographical information, and more to demonstrate how much our politics and society plays America's comedy evolution. From slapstick and satire to sitcoms, the show explores all kind of different comedy genres.
The series compiles the best of the best humor (the snappiest wisecracks, and the mst incisive, biting satirical jokes) that's come out of American culture. And the best of America's best talent is featured too -- like Charlie Chaplin, Lucille Ball, Woody Allen, Joan Rivers, and Jon Stewart. (Seriously? The list goes on and on!)
There's also extra feature interviews with comedians discussing comedy. (This aspect was my favorite part!). Roseanne Barr talks about the different between being on sitcoms versus doing stand-up. James L. Brooks talks about “The Simpsons”. Carol Burnett talks about Lucille Ball. Joan Rivers talks about the talent of Bill Cosby.
Don't let the fact that its six hour length deter you from watching. The episodes are an hour long so you can watch over several days or weeks. The dvd package costs about $25 and would be a great gift for a film student or even those wanting to get into the realm of comedy. (It would be nice to show this to my son, an aspiring comedian who thinks there's nothing more to comedy than fart jokes.) Or even if you're just someone who loves to learn, (like me) you'll find yourself tuned in.