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GARRY SHANDLING with DAVID RENSIN
Confessions of a Late Night Talk Show Host:
The Autobiography of Larry Sanders


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Pocket Books, London, 1999
(price: 7.99; 240 pages)
(first published in Great Britain by Simon & Schuster, 1998)

dedication: To Me


The blurb on the back:

With the wit and charm that have made him one of the most beloved television personalities, Larry Sanders tells the story behind the man, from his emotionally barren beginnings in Minnesota, to his ten-year run as the man millions went to bed with every night. Confessions of a Late Night Talk Show Host is a Hollywood autobiography like no other because it reveals all - the loves and losses, the pain and joy, the shrinks and doctors - and it is uproariously funny.
Sanders's story is laced with the names (and some of the faces) of the thousands of celebrities who have sought his attention for a decade - and Sanders tells the world what he thinks of all of them, even if it hurts his own feelings.

'Very, very funny...he describes the events of his inward-looking life hilariously. Compulsory reading.' - Time Out
'If you're a fan of
The Larry Sanders Show, this book, cheerfully dedicated 'To me', will become an indispensable part of your bedside library.' - Observer


Garry Shandling hardly needs any more plaudits, but just to be on the safe side: he's one of the finest comedians America has ever produced, with two works of absolute genius to his credit. The first was It's Garry Shandling's Show, which took apart the conventions of the sitcom brick by brick and reassembled them into a completely new format somewhere between sitcom, stand-up and satire. The second was The Larry Sanders Show which showed us a collection of self-obsessed neurotic TV types clustered around the eponymous chat show host.

This 'autobiography' is - appropriately - a cheap cash-in on the series: not very many words padded out with pages and pages of grainy photos from TV. It is, of course, also very funny indeed in places. This is Larry on Raquel Welch:

We've never slept together - because I wouldn't want to have to talk to her afterward - but she is a very sexy and talented woman who, I understand, has slept with much of the crew, including Sid, the cue card man. That was shocking to me but, evidently, Sid is hung like a cameraman. I would marry Raquel Welch tomorrow. None of today's sex symbols can hold a candle to her except for David Duchovny.

It probably helps if you can hear Larry's voice, remember the sexual chemistry between Larry and Duchovny, and have a picture of Sid the cue card man. But still, the deadpan delivery is a joy, ain't it? And that line about being 'hung like a cameraman' is worth the price of admission on its own.

Oh, and that's the finest dedication to any book on this site.

The Divine Hank
Jeffrey Tambor as
Hank Kingsley


ARTISTIC MERIT: 4/5
ENTERTAINMENT VALUE:
5/5
HIPNESS QUOTIENT:
4/5


Like this? Try this...

Mr Lonely

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