Second City Television, or SCTV for short, was a parody and satire sketch comedy show that grew out of a noted comedic improv group based in Chicago. It gave rise to many of the most popular young comedians of the 1970s and 1980s, including John Belushi and John Candy. It had many incarnations, starting on the CBC, going to NBC and eventually cable. Its comedic slant was different than that of its contemporary, Saturday Night Live; whereas an SNL skit would have an absurd situation that eventually all the characters see as common-sense, SCTV would always have at least one sane person that would loudly call the absurd what it was. Like SNL, it also had its share of Christmas-based sketches. Being pre-recorded rather than live, these skits were usually longer, in some cases taking up whole episodes.

Christmas Sketches

1983 - It's A Wonderful Film

An aging, Capra-esque movie director named Frank Bailey tries to direct his last film before retiring, a good, old-fashioned Christmas film meant to touch the heart. But the hip modern producer played by Eugene Levy wants to fire him and place a young director played by Martin Short, who plans to turn the film into an 80's teen sex comedy, complete with a gross voyeur nerd and a pot-smoking Grandma. Frank Bailey appears to the overwrought producer and is shown what Christmas movies and specials are really all about, and he has a change of heart. Returning to the set, his re-hiring of Bailey is followed by a series of ever-escalating Christmas miracles, culminating in an appearance by Mitch Miller and the Pope, and the Soviet Union announcing their switch to democracy, and the film characters (even the director who got fired and the towel-clad actresses playing teen girls) end in song. When the cut is called by the real director, the actor playing Frank Bailey storms off the set, denouncing the whole effort as sentimental hogwash, while Eugene Levy's character futilely attempts to remind him of the spirit of Christmas.

Community content is available under CC-BY-SA unless otherwise noted.