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The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson: Johnny and Friends

Score: 90%
Rating: Not Rated
Publisher: Time Life
Region: 1
Media: DVD/1
Running Time: 157 Mins.
Genre: Classic/TV Series
Audio: English Stereo

Time Life has just released The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson: Johnny and Friends in its Featured Guest Series Volume 5 presenting comedian Jerry Seinfeld. Prior to Seinfeld's most popular NBC sitcom, Seinfeld, he made four guest appearances on The Tonight Show. Although Seinfeld's initial appearance is not included here, Time Life features the other three shows from the Vault on this DVD.

In these three vintage shows featuring comedian Jerry Seinfeld, Johnny Carson appears as host, Ed McMahon as co-host with Doc Severinsen and his NBC band. After McMahon announces the familiar "Heeeeeeere's ... Johnny," the host comes out and presents his monologue to his awaiting audience.

Jerry Seinfeld's comedic career skyrocketed to fame with his successful sitcom "Seinfeld." In 1989 his show aired on NBC, and by the fourth season, it had become the most popular and successful sitcom on American television. Now, Time Life presents three full classic shows featuring Jerry Seinfeld. His first appearance was on The Tonight Show on May 6, 1981 when Carson made the decision to keep him as a regular guest. His three future appearances on The Tonight Show break down like this:

Guest Series Volume 5, Show 1 - June 27, 1985 - featuring Shelley Winters. Johnny pays Shelley a compliment by stating that when Dr. Ruth Westheimer has a problem, she calls Shelley for advice. The two discuss the Mighty Carson Art Players' famous sketch of "Mr. Rambo's Neighborhood" with Johnny appearing as Rambo. Shelly mentions her upcoming movie with Elliot Gould, "Over the Brooklyn Bridge," and Seinfeld's comedy act includes changes in our society, stories from old people, and leadership, wisdom and integrity as found in the mascots of the Republicans and Democrats.

Show 2 - February 21, 1986 - featuring Oprah Winfrey. This historic show was the first appearance of the "Queen of the Media" meeting the "King of Late Night." In this segment, Oprah Winfrey promotes her Oscar-nominated movie "The Color Purple" with a film clip. World Champion Drag Racer Shirley Muldowney discusses the difficulties of breaking through the glass ceiling of a predominantly male sport, and also has an exciting drag race with Johnny. The comedic versatility of the musical King Sisters add comedic relief, and Seinfeld's act includes Halloween's superhero, trick-or-treating, and risk-taking as adults.

Show 3 - June 09, 1988 - featuring Arnold Schwarzenegger - A star-studded evening closes this DVD as Johnny's guests include Jerry Seinfeld's fourth appearance with Arnold Schwarzenegger promoting his two upcoming comedy movies "Red Heat" accompanied with a film clip, and his new movie "Twins." He also shares the fact that he loves humor and that he was recently the subject of a three-hour 'Roast' where Milton Berle said that Schwarzenegger is to acting what Raymond Burr is to pole vaulting. Comedian Seinfeld talks about horse humor, then joins Johnny as a guest. Also appearing as a guest is the 18-year-old up-and-coming tennis pro Andre Agassi with a clip from the recent French Open.

The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carsonfeatures the comedy of Jerry Seinfeld and includes three full vintage shows and the DVD allows the audience to choose the option of viewing the classic commercials aired with the show. In an effort to try to preserve the original video footage and keep the show intact, viewers may find small imperfections in the DVD, but that is to be expected with shows from this era.

I enjoy any of the Johnny Carson Tonight Show videos. Because this show made such a monumental impact on American audiences, I recommend adding The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson: Johnny and Friends in its Featured Guest Series Volume 5 presenting Comedian Jerry Seinfeld to your video collection. Johnny and his guests are entertaining and informative, and particularly, the comedy of Jerry Seinfeld is a historic addition to his entertainment career.



-Kambur O. Blythe, GameVortex Communications
AKA Jan Daniel

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