Too Funny to Fail: The Rise and Fall of The Dana Carvey Show

(Welcome to The Quarantine Stream, a new series where the /Film team shares what they’ve been watching while social distancing during the COVID-19 pandemic.)

The Movie: Too Funny to Fail: The Life & Death of The Dana Carvey Show

Where You Can Stream It: Hulu

The Pitch: Fresh off a successful run on Saturday Night Live, comedian Dana Carvey was hired by ABC to create a new sketch show. Armed with a writers room that included a Murderer’s Row of up-and-coming talent such as Steve Carell, Stephen Colbert, Louis C.K., Robert Smigel, Charlie Kaufman, and more, the show aimed to fly high on primetime. So how did The Dana Carvey Show crash and burn so spectacularly while still launching the careers of some of today’s most respective comedians? The documentary Too Funny to Fail: The Life & Death of The Dana Carvey Show will tell you everything you need to know.

Why It’s Essential Viewing: There are plenty of examples about miraculous showbiz success in Hollywood. But the more interesting stories often come from colossal failures. The Dana Carvey Show is perhaps the best example of falling upwards, and the chronicle of the show’s promising rise and frustrating fall is full of some of the best showbiz anecdotes I’ve ever heard. We’re talking about a show that premiered on ABC by having Dana Carvery as a breast-feeding Bill Clinton, complete with real-working nipples that actually dripped milk. That’s where the show started on a network that had just been purchased by The Walt Disney Company. Read More »