Confessions of a Late Night Talk Show Host:
The Autobiography of Larry Sanders
Pocket Books, London, 1999
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.
'Very, very funny...he describes the events of his inward-looking life hilariously. Compulsory reading.' - Time Out
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:
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.
Jeffrey Tambor as
ENTERTAINMENT VALUE: 5/5
HIPNESS QUOTIENT: 4/5
visit a Larry Sanders website