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HOMAGE TO DICK BUTTON

THE GOOD PARTS

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Just before Saturday Night Live made spoofing TV a TV mainstay, Ken Shapiro’s THE GROOVE TUBE scored in theaters by lampooning unruffled anchors, creepy kids’-show clowns, and feel-good ads from rapacious corporations—and by showing more skin than prime time can even today. The skits have so light a touch you may not find the joke, but one in this reissue transcends its time. Wild World of Sports sends up breathless skating commentators by having them cover a coupling at the International Sex Games. We see the West German team’s ”classical frontal embrace” and hear a caress called ”a sweep, a false pass, a curl, and a probe —beautiful combination!” before the satellite feed goes fuzzy, and the voice-over ecstatic. This judge gives it a 9.

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