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Second City Television

Second City Television or SCTV was a Canadian television sketch comedy show that presented predominately television and film parodies as part of its premise and ran in various forms and TV networks from 1976 to 1984. The players included John Candy, Joe Flaherty[?], Andrea Martin[?], Martin Short[?], Catherine O'Hara[?], Eugene Levy[?], Rick Moranis[?] and Dave Thomas[?]

The basic premise is of SCTV is the television station for the city of Melonville. Rather than broadcast the usual TV rerun fare, the business, run by the greedy Guy Cabellero who sits in a wheelchair only for effect, puts on a bizarre and humourously incompetent range of cheap local programming. This can range from a soap opera called The Days of The Week, to game shows like Shoot The Stars where celebrities are literally shot at like targets in a shooting gallery to full blown movie spoofs like Play it Again, Bob where Woody Allen tries to get Bob Hope to star in his next film.

Ironically, the most popular sketch was intended as throwaway filler. When the show was broadcast on the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation TV network, the network heads insisted on at least 2 minutes of identifably Canadian content. Rick Moranis and Dave Thomas thought that this was a senseless demand for a Canadian TV show with a Canadian cast and crew. However, they thought they would send it up in a parody that would fill up the 2 minutes extra content time available on the show since CBC ran fewer commercial in its broadcast. What they created was The Great White North, a parody panel show that played every conceivable Canadian stereotype where two dumb beer-swilling brothers, Bob and Doug McKenzie, would give their comments about various elements of Canada as they saw it. To their shock, the comedians learned that this filler material had become the most popular part of the show and they rode the crest of a bizarre fad of popularity that produced two comedy albums and a movie, Strange Brew. The popularity soon faded, but the act is still fondly remembered by Canadians and still readily recognizable there as an beloved affectionate parody of themselves.



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