May 30, 2008

R.I.P. Harvey Korman. What a guy.

I was going to post a series of youtube links to my favorite Korman moments from The Carol Burnett Show, Blazing Saddles, and others, but there were just too many. "A world without Harvey Korman — it's a more serious world," [Mel] Brooks told the AP on Thursday. "It was very dangerous for me to work with him because if our eyes met we'd crash to floor in comic ecstasy. It was comedy heaven to make Harvey Korman laugh."

  • Well, I guess he was just too big a star for a single FPP. Sorry, guys! Bashi, eek away.
  • Back in the 70s, I visited L.A. with my family and wound up in the studio audience for a taping of The Carol Burnett Show. It was a long, tedious process taping the skits, as they were not done chronologically and often involved numerous repeat takes. The audience usually got the punchline before the set-up, so without the flashing signs we were often at a loss as to what was actually funny. Except, that is, for where Mr. Korman was concerned. While the other cast members seemed self-absorbed and oblivious to the audience, Harvey repeatedly connected with us, as a warm-up guy, cheerleader and general clown. It was clear that he enjoyed the interaction and after six+ hours of taping the only really warm feeling I took away was from him. He played to the crowd rather than the cameras. BTW I adored Blazing Saddles. Still do. Classy, funny, intelligent guy. "That's Hedley! Hedley!"
  • A rare comedian who always TRULY seemed to be enjoying himself. Something about his face and delivery--so warm and funny and just having a great time...this makes me sadder than I'd have thought it would. Siamese elephants, man. Most hilarious thing I ever saw on TV, and not b/c of Tim Conway's riffing--rather b/c of Harvey's reaction. .
  • Ohhhh, this just breaks my heart. Just last week, I was downloading Carol Burnett shows off of YouTube, particularly the Ed & Eunice skits where they all play board games together. I think my very favorite Conway Makes Korman Laugh skit is the one where Conway plays a dentist and ends up jabbing himself repeatedly with the hypodermic needle, while Korman simply canNOT keep from busting up and hooting with laughter! Damn it, Harvey, you will be sorely missed.
  • Oh, I'd forgotten that one, kittenhead! Off to youtube I go...
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