The Carol Burnett Show was a comedy variety hour that lasted 11 seasons comprising 278 episodes. So you can imagine how difficult it must have been for Carol to pick only 16 favorite episodes for this DVD set. Fortunately, she managed to pick the episodes that had some of the funniest moments and guest stars of the show (including the famed “Went with the Wind!” parody of Gone with the Wind).
Carol Burnett is a skilled comedienne who can combine physical comedy with social satire and subtle, tongue-in-cheek humor. Although the jokes may not always elicit audible guffaws, you will definitely be laughing on the inside. Of course, the best thing about live sketches is when you catch the actors breaking—or about to break—character. And even though this show is from the 1970s, some of the sketches still translate perfectly to our culture today. Carol utilizes her small cast of actors featuring Vicki Lawrence, Harvey Korman, Lyle Waggoner, and Tim Conway to execute these great sketches and musical numbers.
She also utilizes the great guest stars she gets on the show. It’s great to see Carol and Maggie Smith play old college friends in “A Visit from Karen.” Betty White kills it in the soap opera satire “As the Stomach Turns: Close Encounters” (even if Steve Martin tries too hard to be funny, as usual). Carol’s duet “Fan Mail” with Shirley MacLaine is one of the funniest numbers in the entire set. But the episode with Joan Rivers and Vincent Price is definitely the most entertaining episode found in this collection. Other notable guest stars include The Jackson 5, Carl Reiner and Rock Hudson.
Fans of Carol Burnett will definitely want to add this collection to their shelf, and fans of sketch comedy in general will find much to enjoy in this collection as well.
DVD Bonus Features
This DVD set contains a slew of featurettes. “Let’s Bump Up the Lights” is a cast reunion for Carol Burnett, Vicki Lawrence, Tim Conway and Lyle Waggoner composed of 30 minutes of reminiscences. “I Want to Push That Button...” is a fascinating look at how The Carol Burnett Show came about. “Carol Burnett: Leading Lady” applauds Carol’s contributions as a female comedienne. “Ahhhh, Mr.s Whiggins?” is an examination of the humor of the “Tudbull and Wiggins” characters from the show. There are also various interviews with Carol, Betty White, Carl Reiner and “Harvey Korman & Tim Conway—Together Again.” And bonus sketches like the rarely seen “The Dentist” with Tim Conway and Harvey Korman and “Supergirl” from The Garry Moore Show (which featured Carol’s first Tarzan yell on television).
"The Carol Burnett Show: Carol's Favorites" is on sale September 25, 2012 and is not rated. Comedy. Directed by Dave Powers. Written by Ed Simmons, Roger Beatty, Gary Belkin, Arnie Rosen, Gene Perret. Starring Carol Burnett, Harvey Korman, Lyle Waggoner, Tim Conway, Vicki Lawrence.