It’s Garry Shandling’s Life

Garry Shandling always made me laugh. From his early stand-up days through It’s Garry Shandling’s Show, The Larry Sanders Show, and a recent appearance on Jerry Seinfeld’s Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee, there was never a time when he seemed dated or out of touch. Fellow comics had mad respect for him. 

close-up of Garry Shandling in 1987, smiling widely
photo by Alan Light

Shandling was offered The Tonight Show and chose instead to continue with his own show, Larry Sanders, which was a take-off on The Tonight Show and other late-night programs. It was a brilliant send-up of the goings-on behind the scenes, the scheming and back-stabbing, and the machinations of putting on a program featuring a man with a huge ego and his dim-witted but lovable sidekick.

Shandling’s comedy is smart and self-deprecating. If you missed out on his brilliance before he died late last week at the age of 66, check out this nearly decade-old piece he wrote for Esquire magazine. It’s a collection of random thoughts, a list really, and it’s a wonderful overview of the way his mind worked. He was an original.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *