TV Shows From Across The Pond That I Can’t Believe You Haven’t Watched

(Getty/Illustration by GraphicaArtis)

I don’t want to startle you, but I’m English. I know that there have been no clues (I guess I did write an article about it), and I know that you are shocked, but there is a reason I am telling you this. You’re an American (probably). We have different TV.

In the old days, I’m talking *spooky voice* the niiiiinnnnneeeeties, that would have probably meant we couldn’t talk about TV together. Imagine us. Young me, young you, sitting on a couch, trying to talk TV, but just having none of the same references points. Awful, right?

Well, now we live in something that I like to call TheModernAgeTM where we have things that let us watch TV on the internet.

So, what does it all mean? Good question, pal. What it means is I’m going to recommend you some damn good British TV shows that you should be watching on Netflix or Hulu.

Gavin & Stacey (Hulu)

Let’s start with something that might be a little familiar; I don’t want to startle you any more than I already have. Gavin & Stacey is a sitcom about a couple who meet over the phone through works calls, and the subsequent merging of their families as their relationship progresses. He lives in England, she lives in Wales, it’s a bit of a drive. That’s the basis of a lot of the humor, to be honest.

The reason I say it might be familiar is because it was written by James Corden and Ruth Jones. You obviously know one of those names. Corden plays Smithy, the best friend of the titular Gavin, and his performance is basically what exploded his career, as both an actor and a writer.

It’s got a really good cast (Mat Horne, Joanna Page, Ruth Jones, James Corden, Rob Brydon, Larry Lamb, Alison Steadman, Melanie Walters, and others) that runs pretty deep. It’s got a great soundtrack (The Libertines feature in episode one and that automatically makes it a win for me) and has some wonderful standout comedy moments. It also has a running theme of naming families after British serial killers (Shipman, West, Sutcliffe), which is pretty excellent.

There were 3 seasons between 2007 and 2010, and in total there were 20 episodes. You could polish it off in a day.

(Source: YouTube)

Spaced (Hulu)

What is there to say about Spaced, other than it is absolutely excellent? Well, hopefully, a little more than just that because I need to write some words.

Essentially, the show is about two people (Daisy & Tim) who meet in a café while looking for new places to live. Because they can’t afford anywhere individually, they decide to pose as a couple in order to get a cheap place that is for couples only, and they move in together. The show features around their friendships and is… I think it’s safe to say it’s pretty weird in places.

Again, the cast is great. You’ll likely recognize Simon Pegg and Jessica Stevenson who both star in and wrote the thing. Nick Frost is probably the stand out of the supporting cast, but Katy Carmichael is great as Twist, and Mark Heap’s character, Brian, is excellent.

There are only 14 episodes and they are 25 minutes long. It’s literally less than 6 hours worth of viewing. Considering how little there actually was, the fact that this show is still being talked about 19 years after it started speaks volumes about its quality.

(Source: YouTube)

Peep Show (Hulu)

I fucking love Peep Show. It is so, so funny. It’s about two best friends who live together in their late 20s and into their 30s. The comedy comes from the fact they are so remarkably different. Mark is incredibly introverted, awkward, and shy. He works in finance and he is usually miserable. Jeremy is an absolute shlub who is convinced he’s going to make it as a musician even though he’s shit. Both of them have cripplingly low self-esteem and make absolutely terrible decisions throughout their lives.

The show is kind of unique in the way it is shot. There are a large number of scenes that are shot from head-mounted cameras, in order to show the world from the perspectives of Mark and Jeremy. When we see the world through their eyes, we also get to hear their internal monologue, which is always brutally honest and at odds with the character they portray to the world.

David Mitchell & Robert Webb play the main characters, and they are both excellent in the roles and supported by some outstanding performances. Notably, Olivia Colman as Sophie is fantastic, while Matt King’s Super Hans is one of the most loved characters of 2000s comedy.

There are 9 seasons of Peep Show, which sounds like a lot, but we have shorter seasons than you guys. That means only 54 episodes, so there are really no excuses.

(Source: YouTube)

Moone Boy (Hulu)

Alright, technically this isn’t a British show, it’s Irish, but I’m including it anyway because you’re American and let’s not pretend you understand the difference. Moone Boy is about a young boy named Martin and his imaginary friend growing up in rural Ireland in the late 80s. The imaginary friend is a 30-year-old man named Sean Murphy, which highlights the lack of exposure that Martin has had to the outside world. Literally, the best thing he could imagine was an older Irish man named Sean. With the middle name ‘Caution’.

Now, people talk about the kids from Stranger Things as being great actors (which they are), but the kids in this show are amazing. David Rawle was 12 when he first played Martin, and he was brilliant. The comedic timing that he and Ian O’Reilly (Padraic) display as a couple of pre-teens is astounding.

The star though is Chris O’Dowd. The show is loosely based on his experiences as a child, and he plays Sean fantastically well.

Again, this is a short one. 22 minutes an episode. 18 episodes. Bang it out, guys.

(Source: YouTube)

Uncle (Hulu)

Uncle is great. It’s about a giant waste of space asshole wannabe musician who is suddenly forced to spend time with his teenage nephew when his sister gets divorced and needs some help. The relationship between Andy (the uncle) and Errol (the nephew) grows throughout the show, and they bring the best out of each other (aww). Every episode features a musical number, often the fantasy of Andy, and they are usually really, very good.

Nick Helm stars as Andy, and he basically plays himself, which is handy because he is really good at it (if you don’t know Helm’s standup comedy, I would recommend checking it out). Like Moone Boy, there is a great performance from a child, Elliot Speller-Gillott (try having a more stereotypical British name, jeez) who really elevates the show to the next level. They are supported by a great cast, which includes Sydney Rae White, who is also a pretty cool punk rock singer and guitarist.

There were only 3 seasons, 19 episodes, and at 30 minutes each, you really can’t go wrong.

(Source: YouTube)

The Mighty Boosh (Hulu)

Ok, the shows from before are pretty standard in format and humor. They are sitcoms that you can get into very easily. The Mighty Boosh is… different. It’s surreal as fuck, and kind of hard to explain. It’s set in a surreal universe and follows Howard Moon and Vince Noir through a number of different bizarre settings and adventures. In season one, they are zookeepers; they live in a flat together in season two; and in season three, they work in a shop, but I guess it’s fair to say they are also musicians the whole way through. Again, music features heavily with a number of really funny, really weird songs in each episode.

Noel Fielding (Vince) and Julian Barratt (Howard) are the creators, writers, and stars, but The Mighty Boosh is a comedy troupe also featuring Rich Fulcher, Dave Brown and Michael Fielding, and every member of the troupe contributes fantastically to the show.

The music, the artwork, the costumes, the dialogue. Everything about the Boosh is an equal partner in making this show the spectacle that it is, and it really is important you watch it. There are only 20 episodes. You know you want to.

(Source: YouTube)

Toast of London (Netflix)

Toast of London is absurd.

Basically, it’s about an actor called Steven Toast, who is an extremely self-important idiot. He’s basically a failure and everyone knows it, except him. It’s incredibly strange but absolutely hilarious. We follow Toast through the ups and downs up his career and romantic life, and generally, he is just an utter buffoon.

Matt Berry plays Toast and he does it phenomenally well. Honestly, this show couldn’t exist if it wasn’t for Matt Berry. Nobody else could have played Toast. There is a great supporting cast, but really it is all about Matt Berry.

Unlike the other shows I’ve mentioned, this one is still technically in production. There are three seasons so far, and it has been kind of confirmed that there will be a fourth.

I cannot stress to you enough how much I recommend this show.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d4XEqQPhv7A

(Source: YouTube)

A Young Doctor’s Notebook (Netflix)

This is a bit of a different one from the others. A Young Doctor’s Notebook is based on a collection of stories by Mikhail Bulgakov, a Russian playwright and physician at the start of the 20th Century. The story is centered around the experiences of a young doctor in rural Russia during the Russian Revolution in 1917 and then the Russian Civil War. As you can imagine, technology and conditions were pretty appalling, and the doctor has to… let’s say, “improvise” regularly. The story is basically about the doctor, now an older man, reflecting on his notebook and remembering his youth. This is shown by the presence of the young doctor and also an older doctor and the interaction between his present and past (or future and present, I guess) selves.

It’s dark as fuck, hilarious, and, as I’m sure you can work out from the cast (Jon Hamm plays the older doctor, and Daniel Radcliffe plays the young doctor), brilliantly executed. If you like turn of the century Russian literature, you’ll love this. And if you don’t, you’ll probably love it anyway, because it’s been updated to modern language and is really so good.

There are only 8 episodes of this show. There is absolutely no reason not to watch it.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EKIE6iv2TYw

(Source: YouTube)

A few others...

I’m not sure if these are easily available to you, but I would also like to mention these shows, for if you ever the time:

Garth Marenghi’s Darkplace, Camping, Nathan Barley, The IT Crowd, Black Books, The Inbetweeners, Phoenix Nights and The Royle Family.

All phenomenally good and without a doubt worth watching.

Father Figures: Stepped In

“This is my dad.

Okay, so he isn’t my biological father. But he has been a father figure for me for a long time. His gentleness and calmness has been an inspiration to me for so long.

When my real dad died before he could marry my husband and I, this man stepped in.

I couldn’t ask for a better second dad. He’s there when I’m freaking out at 3am and send a text, he’s there when I’m excited and I text him and Mom (his wife) and let them know about something good in our life.

When I was younger, I had just watched my brother get in an accident (he’s okay now, but has a skull fracture and a TBI). Some girls came up to me and said they hoped I was okay.

Shocked and scared, I got mad and told them I wasn’t the one who got hurt. My dad directed them away from the situation and pulled me in for a hug. He kept hugging me so I wouldn’t look back at my brother and wouldn’t tear into those girls.

He’s a good dad.”

– Ashley McKinney

Want to share a story about fatherhood? Email [email protected]

Kevin Hart Takes Jerry Lewis’s Place as Muscular Dystrophy Telethon’s Host

Kevin Hart Hosts Muscular Dystrophy Association Telethon
(Youtube/LOL Network)

For almost half a century, Jerry Lewis dedicated himself to helping find a cure for muscular dystrophy. Muscular dystrophy is a genetic disease that causes muscle degeneration, weakness, trouble breathing, and sadly, its progressive nature means those symptoms get worse over time. Jerry Lewis wanted to see the suffering caused by MD end – he became the face and voice of the Muscular Dystrophy Association’s annual telethon, spending thousands of hours and helping to raise $2.45 billion for MD research between 1966-2009.

Sadly, Jerry Lewis passed away in 2017, devastating the community he worked so hard to help over the years.

The Muscular Dystrophy Association said in a statement following Lewis’s death, “MDA would not be the organization it is today if it were not for Jerry’s tireless efforts on behalf of ‘his kids.’ His enthusiasm for finding cures for neuromuscular disease was matched only by his unyielding commitment to see the fight through to the end. Jerry’s efforts on the annual MDA Telethon transformed the broadcast into an American tradition each Labor Day weekend for 45 years.”

The telethon, however, must go on. It’s what Jerry Lewis would have wanted – people continuing to use the fundraiser he made famous to raise as much money as possible for the cause he held so close to his heart. The first MDA telethon in six years has a new face (and a much shorter runtime) but was still packed with entertainment. Actor and comedian Kevin Hart stepped up to host the 2020 Muscular Dystrophy Association’s telethon, raising over $10.5 million during the two-hour event.

The October 24 telethon raised money for both the Muscular Dystrophy Association and Kevin Hart’s own Help From The Hart Charity, which provides scholarships to those in underserved communities and helps people struggling with medical needs. The event was star-studded and featured a variety of entertainment from comedy to musical performances.

Guests included Jack Black, Bryan Cranston, Usain Bolt, Whitney Cummings, Steph Curry, Adam Devine, Josh Gad, Michael B. Jordan, and more. Though the event itself is over, you can still watch the full telethon – and more importantly, you can still support the cause. Some auctions are still in progress, including a signed Stephen Curry jersey, a Zoom session with Zachary Levi, and several other one-of-a-kind items. If you just want to donate, you can do that here.

“At this point in my life and my career, it’s finding other things to hold on to,” Hart told ABC News. “Entertainment and comedy — it’s been a thing, it’s been what I’m known for, and I’ve pushed hard to be successful at it. If I can match that energy and switch the gears and start to do things for others and bring awareness and a high level of positivity to the world and hopefully bring people together, put smiles on the faces, heal some, do for some, I will feel like I’ve done my job while here.”

Netflix Teams-Up With Ubisoft to Make a Live-Action Assassin’s Creed Show

Assassin's Creed Netflix
(Netflix/Ubisoft)

Video game movies and tv shows don’t always hit the mark, but if anyone is capable of a big swing, Netflix is the one. They nailed it with ‘The Witcher”, which is also getting a prequel series, and now they’ve got another beloved video game franchise they are developing into a show. We are finally getting an “Assassin’s Creed” show.

This is the result of a deal between Ubisoft and Netflix and is the first of several new series. According to a press release the deal will “tap into the iconic video game’s trove of dynamic stories with global mass appeal for adaptions of live-action, animated and anime series.” So, we could be getting a lot of Assassin’s Creed content, but the live-action show is up first.

What do we know? OK, admittedly, not much beyond the fact that it’s going to happen. It could be set in almost any point in history, from the Crusades to the American Revolution, from Pirates to Vikings. Are we getting Ezio or Connor? Edward Kenway? Who knows??

The bottom line, whatever we’re gonna get is gonna come with extremely high expectations, as the video game franchise is one of the most successful over the past decade-plus and one of the best-selling games of all time. There is an enormous amount of potential if they give it the runway a series like this needs to be done correctly. For its part, Netflix is saying all the right things (which is the easy part).

“From its breathtaking historical worlds and massive global appeal as one of the best selling video game franchises of all time, we are committed to carefully crafting epic and thrilling entertainment based on this distinct IP and provide a deeper dive for fans and our members around the world to enjoy,” said Netflix original series vice president Peter Friedlander in a prepared statement.

Assassin’s Creed is full of great characters and great stories, but when you cut corners, you end up with the 2016 big screen adaption that was largely panned.

Still, after “The Witcher,” it’s hard not to have sky-high hopes for the possibilities of the new partnership.

‘Band of Brothers’ Follow-Up Focuses on World War II Pilots

Band of Brothers Follow up
(HBO)

When it comes to the golden age of TV, HBO has had its fair share of classic shows. From arguably launching the era with The Sopranos and continuing it with Deadwood and The Wire, and then dominating culture with Game of Thrones, the cable network has a sterling reputation for television excellence.

We haven’t even mentioned their comedies like The Larry Sanders Show, Curb Your Enthusiasm, and Veep, or their landmark World War II series The Band of Brothers.

Produced by Tom Hanks and Steven Spielberg, the Band of Brothers miniseries and its follow-up The Pacific were nominated for 44 Emmys and won 15. Now Hanks and Spielberg are following those shows up with a new series about aerial combat, called Masters of the Air, but this one belongs to Apple TV+.

The show is an adaptation of the Donald L. Miller book Masters of the Air: America’s Bomber Boys Who Fought the Air War Against Nazi Germany. It will last 10 episodes and cover personal stories of the American and British pilots who fought for freedom in the skies. According to Deadline the first three episodes will be directed by Cary Fukanaga, who helmed True Detective and the COVID-delayed Bond movie No Time to Die.

No word on casting yet, but with this kind of talent behind the camera and behind the scenes, and the reputation that Band of Brothers and The Pacific have for illuminating the heroism and sacrifices of the Greatest generation, there should be no shortage of actors willing to suit up.

KFC Brings Back Their Popular Chicken-Scented Firelog

KFC Chicken Fire Log
(KFC)

It is fire season. Fire pits, fireplaces, all of it. And with most of us staying home more, or trying to be outside more, having a log to throw on the fire has never been more important. And if you can make your house smell like delicious fried chicken at the same time, why not go for it? That is the sentiment behind KFC’s 11 Herbs and Spices Firelog, a seasonal delight that is back on sale to help bring a dose of normalcy to your holiday season.

KFC knows the power of their chicken, and more importantly, even the smell of their chicken. Which is why the iconic fast-food brand developed chicken-scented crocs. KFC isn’t afraid to branch out to new products, or even new partnerships, which we saw when they teamed up with Cheetos. And now they are back to giving us the hits again, with everyone’s favorite firelog.


It’s sold exclusively at Wal-Mart (in select stores and of course online at Walmart.com). The log is a big hit, and was quick to sell-out last year.


The log is made by Enviro-Log and there is no limit to how you can incorporate it into your life. OK, there are actually a bunch of limits. It is just a fire log, after all. But whether it’s in the fireplace or in your fire pit, it’s a nice way to up the cozy factor while you’re stuck at home more than usual.

And, if you do get enough of your chicken smell fill, we can help chase it with a familiar smell of our own.

Reese’s Built a Robotic Candy-Dispensing Door for Safer Trick-or-Treating

Reese's Candy-Dispensing Door
(Instagram/Reeses)

In a world where the kid holiday of all kid holidays has taken a serious hit due to COVID, parents have worked tirelessly to find safe ways for their kids to still be able to enjoy the spirit of the season. Many neighborhoods have canceled trick-or-treating altogether, but as everyone knows, it’s not Halloween without a boatload of candy. Some creative folks have come up with excellent workarounds to dispense candy in fun and interesting ways, but the candy geniuses at Reese’s took it to a whole new level.

It’s no secret that Reese’s are a high-value candy. Any kid who’s ever participated in the yearly Halloween Night Trade knows that one Reese’s is worth at least two of any other candy (three if it’s an Almond Joy). And that’s just for the fun-sized cups! This year, Reese’s is safely bringing king-sized versions of their beloved candy to trick-or-treaters – and they’re also bringing the door.

If you’re a true Halloween fan, you can plead your case on Instagram. Some very lucky Halloweenheads will get a very special delivery this year in the form of a robotic door built by the candy brand, a door that can be controlled from up to 5,000 feet away. If you spot this 9-foot-tall door in your neighborhood (it’s hard to miss, with the lights and smoke and Halloween-y music), make sure to say “trick or treat!”

When the robotic door hears those three magic words, a king-sized Reese’s will appear in the mail slot for the lucky Halloween lover to devour, or trade if that’s your MO. Whatever you do with your enormous peanut butter chocolate treat, the delivery method will be one you’ll never forget.

Allen Dark, Reese’s senior brand manager explained, “This Halloween is unlike any other, so we’ve upped the ante on creativity as a result. A robotic Reese’s dispensing door is just what the world needs right now.”

Undoubtedly, a lot of things in the world would be greatly improved by treat-dispensing robots. The robotic door is a safe and convenient way to deliver treats to Reese’s fans, but it also provides some much-needed levity during a stressful time. Honestly, if this is what the robot uprising looked like, I’d be all for it. Candy-Dispensing Robot 2020.

Insanely Brutal Stat Correction Costs Fantasy Football Player $1 Million

Stat Correction Costs Player a Million
(Getty/Joe Scarnici Twitter/ActionNetworkHQ)

The NFL isn’t the most fun sport to watch, but it is one of the most fun to follow, and we have gambling to thank for that. Fantasy Football started as a cottage industry and is BOOMING now, and has been a boost to the sport’s bottom line for years. So much to the point that players now hate getting bothered on social media about their fantasy football output. And with most states approving online sports gambling, daily games have made the NFL even more appealing.

But with the rise of games like that, you see some truly heart-breaking, crushing bad beats, and boy did Monday Night Football include perhaps the worst in sports and gambling history. A DraftKings player had participated in a contest with a lineup that included, among others, Jared Goff and the Chicago Bears defense.

At the end of the game, it appeared that player had won the contest and won the $1 million prize that goes with it. As epic of a fantasy football win as you can have in a lifetime. And then…the dreaded, brutal stat correction.

First, stat corrections are the bane of fantasy football. Like an ump that makes a mistake, they should be left untouched, allowing for a smidge of human error to influence our games, for worse or in this case for much, much better.

The way it played out was a sack previously credited to the Bears defense was taken away, and instead turned into a negative rushing attempt for Goff, so it slightly hurt both players. And it hurt the fantasy football player the most, taking his $1 million prize away, and moving him to sixth place, for a paltry $3,000 winnings.


When it comes to fantasy football, you will not find a crueler break than that. No pain, no game, or something like that, sure. But dang, dude, that is a hard way to lose a million dollars.

15 Crazy Facts You Don’t Know About Rick Moranis

15 Crazy Facts About Rick Moranis
(Columbia Pictures)

You thought you knew Rick Moranis? Sorry to break it to you pal, but you don’t.

In fact, here are 15 facts you probably didn’t know about him. Facts so good you could impress other dads at daycare pickup by slipping one of these bad boys into casual conversation. (“Oh, your kid likes teddy bears? Reminds me of when Rick Moranis voiced Mr. Cuddles the Teddy Bear in 2003 animated film Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer & the Island of Misfit Toys.”)

So many facts that next time you get in a Rick Moranis Facts-Off with your annoying neighbor who’s always trying to one-up you, you’ll be laying down cold hard Rickies (street slang for Rick Moranis facts) and ending with a mic drop.

Get a load of these Rickies. Take them in. Your prep for the next neighborhood Rick Moranis Facts-Off starts here. Godspeed.

1. Rick took a hiatus from acting, but he never really left.

There were rumors that work for Rick dried up and that’s why we hadn’t seen him on the big screen for a while, but c’mon, you know Rick better than this. He’s insanely talented and kept getting offers for roles left and right over the years, but Rick stayed home to be a single dad after his wife passed away from breast cancer.

In a Hollywood Reporter interview, Rick says he never really retired from the industry — he was just picky.

Although we didn’t see him on the screen for a while, Rick was always there. From 2001 to 2006, he voiced characters for three animated films and made a voice appearance in The Goldbergs to reprise his role from Space Balls, Dark Helmet.

2. His decision to be a stay-at-home dad wasn’t a tough one.

In an interview with Uproxx, Rick explains shifting his focus to his kids in a matter-of-fact, “duh, of course, my kids are the most important thing”-kind of way.

“Stuff happens to people everyday, and they make adjustments to their lives for all kinds of reasons. There was nothing unusual about what happened or what I did, I think the reason that people were intrigued by the decisions I was making and sometimes seem to have almost admiration for it had less to do with the fact that I was doing what I was doing and more to do with what they thought I was walking away from, as if what I was walking away from had far greater value than anything else that one might have.”

Other people might bat a few eyes at walking away from rising movie star fame, but not Rick.

When asked about walking away from a career in which he got to use his creativity every day, Rick said, “I didn’t walk away from that. I applied all of my creativity to my home life, to my kids, to my family. I was the same person. I didn’t change. I just shifted my focus.”

We love this guy and his attitude. We could all stand to be a little more like Rick.

3. He’s been confirmed for a “Honey I Shrunk the Kids” Reboot.

a still from Honey I Shrunk the Kids
(Walt Disney)

If you’ve been keeping up at The Dad then you already knew this one, and if you haven’t been keeping up with The Dad, why not? Well, good news: Rick is definitely on board for a reboot of “Honey, I Shrunk the Kids.” Honey, I’ve been overtaken by nostalgia. Honey, I’ve busted a tear from my left eye. Honey, he’s back.

Rick starred as Wayne Szalinski, an inventor dad who committed the biggest “oh sh*t” of our time by shrinking his kids with an experimental ray gun. At some point he accidentally sweeps up his tiny kids in a dustpan and throws them in the trash, but like, who among us?

The reboot, called Shrunk, will focus on Wayne’s son, who’s now grown. Apparently the “accidentally shrinking your own kids” gene is strong in this family since Wayne’s son does the ole shrinkaroo on his own kids. We can’t wait to see what Wayne/Rick/the OG shrinker has to say about that.

4. Rick released a comedy/country album called The Agoraphobic Cowboy.

Rick Moranis Album
(Warner)

What are you doing with the rest of your day? I just cleared my calendar to listen to The Agoraphobic Cowboy on vinyl while wearing assless chaps and pondering my fear of public spaces, and I invite you to join me.

If you approached me in 2005 and said, “Guess what Rick Moranis is doing right now?” I would say, “Tell me.” And then if you said, “He’s writing a country album called The Agoraphobic Cowboy,” I would say, “Yes, I believe you. That sounds like the most Rick Moranis thing of all time.” He’s since released another comedy music album called My Mother’s Brisket & Other Love Songs, so it looks like I’ll have to clear my calendar for tomorrow, too.

5. Seymour and his plant in Little Shop of Horrors would make a good Halloween costume for a dad and his plant-sized baby.

stills of Seymour (played by Rick Moranis) in Little Shop of Horrors
(Warner Bros)

This isn’t really a fact, just something we noticed. Do you love Rick Moranis and are you looking for an easy DIY costume for Halloween? Do you have a baby without the job, income, or wherewithal to plan its own costume? No worries. Dress like good old Seymour Krelborn, one of our favorite Rick Moranis characters. Slap on some glasses and tape leaves onto that baby. Sing him Little Shop of Horrors original music like “Grow For Me.” Pray that he doesn’t grow too large and one day overtakes you.

6. Rick breathed life into his Ghostbusters character by improvising.

There is writing a good screenplay, then there is hiring a good actor that makes that screenplay come to life in ways you couldn’t have written.

Rick improvised scenes in Ghostbusters, most notably the one in which Louis welcomes a couple to a party by airing out all their financial details to other partygoers. Apparently the whole thing was Rick’s idea and he kind of just made it up along the way.
Director Ivan Reitman explained:

“Right away, Rick had all these wonderful ideas. I think it was his idea to play him as an accountant; he wrote that extraordinary speech when he is inviting people to a party at his house and he’s walking that incoming couple through. I had the joke of throwing the coat on the dog that’s in his bedroom, but that whole wonderful speech … Rick just made all of it up as he was doing it. All these guys were so, so good at writing.”

7. There was talk of a Space Balls 2, but it didn’t pan out.

Space Balls movie poster
(MGM)

The movie’s cult following urged the question: will there be a Space Balls 2? The answer was almost yes, according to Rick:

“It wasn’t a box office hit. It was a cult video hit, and MGM wanted to do a sequel. And my idea for it was Spaceballs III: The Search for Spaceballs II…But the deal he presented me, what he wanted me to do, was not workable. It was two or three years later…It’s better if I don’t get into the particulars of it…But I was unable to make a deal, and it would have been something I wanted to do.”

Son of a. We were so close to getting another Space Balls. Maybe someday.

8. Rick improvised the Spaceballs scene where Dark Helmet plays with dolls.

You know how your kid can just pick up some dolls and create this whole fantasy world? Your kid and Rick Moranis have that in common.

Apparently, director Mel Brooks came to set with the idea for the scene one day, told Rick about it, and Rick was like, say no mo’. The king of acting/improvising strikes again.

9. Rick Moranis would rather not fly.

Rick Moranis in Space Balls
(Tenor)

Celebrities: they hate flying just like us! It’s not that he’s afraid of flying — Rick Moranis isn’t afraid of anything. He just hates the grossness of being stuck on a plane in a germ stew with a hundred other strangers and the inefficiency of it all.

“We started to hear the stories of people stuck on the tarmac for six hours,” Rick told Heeb Magazine. “If that happens to me, I’ll be on the front page of the New York Post the next day. I’ll fake a heart attack or melt down. So it’s better for me to stay away from airports.”

If he can drive there, he will. Say, Rick, I hate flying too, wanna road trip together?

10. Rick has dated here and there over the years.


Can you imagine going on a date with Rick Moranis? Apparently, Rick’s been putting himself out there a bit, just not on dating apps: “What picture would I use? The guy from Ghostbusters? I don’t think dating sites work for people with famous punims.”

Rick told Heeb Magazine he’d probably travel more if he had a lady companion, but hear me out, Rick. You don’t need a lady to travel with you. What about a dude’s trip? I know at least 10 dads who would love to go on a road trip with you (no airplanes, promise).

11. Rick is Jewish but non-practicing.

Rick Moranis
(Warner)

If you hadn’t guessed already, that’s what his comedy album My Mother’s Brisket & Other Love Songs is all about. Funny, lively, delightfully Jewish — it’s basically a musical manifestation of Rick.

Rick described the album:

“When I first began writing jokes and sketches with various Jewish partners one of us would inevitably stop at some point and announce, ‘Too Jewish!’ Too Jewish for the star, the show, the network, or the audience. The songs on this album are all in that category.”

If you want to wax poetic/comedic about silver Yiddish cups, a challah, and a very Jewish mother serving up some brisket, then take this one for a spin.

12. Rick’s kids didn’t care that he was famous.

Who, that guy? The guy who changed our diapers? He’s alright, I guess.

Rick told Uproxx:

“My earliest memories were of being in public situations where people would get all excited because they were seeing a famous person, and my kids were just like, ‘Why are you so excited? It’s just him.’ They had a really good perspective on celebrity and fame very early on.”

But it sounds like his kids had a sort of indifference to celebrities and fame in general. About the time his five-year-old son saw Derek Jeter at a Knicks game:

“Derek Jeter turned around, recognized me, got kind of like, ‘Oh hi! Hi!’ And my son said, ‘Have you met Chuck Knoblauch yet?’ And Jeter looked at him like, ‘Who is this kid.’ But that was my son. He was comfortable around anyone, and I think the reason was, is because he just didn’t buy why anyone would get excited around me.”

I hope if I ever run into Rick Moranis, I play it as cool as his kids.

13. He “isn’t saying no” to performing his music live.

In an interview with Heeb Magazine, Rick said:

“I’m intrigued by the idea of playing this music live. I’ve never done that. To do a stage performance in a theater with this music, it might be enjoyable. I have no idea. I’ll see what happens. I’m not saying no to anything at this point, including all of the above.”

If we all start working on our Rick Moranis movie character cosplays now, we can be ready by the time you, me, and every dad we know turn up for the Rick Moranis live music function.

14. Rick was fired from The Breakfast Club.

a still from The Breakfast Club
(Universal)

First of all, director John Hughes, how could you. And second: guess the reason he was fired. You can’t.

Did you guess because he played the role of Carl the Janitor with a too-over-the-top Russian accent? Damn, how’d you guess that?

I’m now commencing my boycott of any The Breakfast Club rewatches and I invite you to join me. Rick Moranis belongs in any movie, in any role, even as a gimmicky Russian janitor, and it’s a cardinal sin to think otherwise. If I watch it now, all I’ll be able to think about is how much better it would’ve been with Rick Moranis.

15. His daughter is an architect and his son works in entertainment.

Talk about doing some hella fathering. Rick fathered these kids so good that they’re both doing super impressive things. Rachel, now 32, has multiple degrees in architecture, attended Harvard for grad school, and has co-founded multiple companies. Mitchell, also 32, has busied himself with all things entertainment biz: acting, screenwriting, producing, songwriting, you name it.

Looks like Rick stepping back from Hollywood to take care of his family paid off after all. We love you, Rick. Probably more than your own kids do. Okay, fine, it’s not a competition.

These crazy facts are a part of our dad trivia series, where we drop some pop-culture science you can impress your dad pals with at the next BBQ.

Check out our previous edition where we featured crazy Facts You Don’t Know About Gary Sinise.

Father Figures: Endless Love

“This is me and my dad. His face describes him perfectly; fun-loving, goofy, and the best dad in the world.

When I was four, he and my mom got married after she and my biological father divorced. Ever since, he has been the best dad I could’ve asked for.

He never misses a dance, ceremony, or sports game and he’s always there for me when I need him. He and my mom just went through a divorce, yet he continues to show me endless love just like a father should.

He may not be my dad by blood, but no one could ever replace the bond that we share.”

– Katelyn Winstead