Remember when The Drew Carey Show was live and also improvised

Oh, to be live and on television. Memories. Remember all the way back to last night, when NBC did not one, but two live half-hour editions of 30 Rock to entertain three of America's time zones in real time?

Wait. Hold that thought. Remember way back to when all TV shows were produced live? Nope. Went too far back. Third try. How about a decade ago, when Drew Carey and his cast and friends produced multiple live episodes of The Drew Carey Show? I remember that, not only because it was a popular show, but also because they upped the ante by incorporating one of the short-form improv games from Whose Line is It Anyway (as well as some of the comedians from that series), in which they'd ring a bell without warning, prompting the character to come up with a new punchline on the spot.

As you see in this 2001 episode, Drew Live III, the improv added an extra layer of living to live TV, as well as chances for characters to break. Roll the clips!

They also incorporated a few other short-form improv games in this episode. Keep watching: Part Two. Part Three.

Sean L. McCarthy

Editor and publisher since 2007, when he was named New York's Funniest Reporter. Former newspaper reporter at the New York Daily News, Boston Herald and smaller dailies and community papers across America. Loves comedy so much he founded this site.

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