Pat Kilbane

Mad TV Demo Reel

This demo was my calling card for my post-Mad TV years in the early 2000’s.  The music and impressions are definitely “of the time,” but I’m still proud of it as a synopsis of my contribution to the show.

Behind the Scenes

When we wrapped Season Five of Mad TV in the spring of 2000, I knew that my contract was up and that coming back would not be a sure thing for me.  In fact, Fox was still deliberating at that point whether the show would even be returning for another year.  I got a part in a pilot that spring – the role of a spaceship 1st officer in an ill-fated Star Trek parody – but I knew I needed more momentum.

Then I saw an episode of MTV’s Biorhythm that covered the career of Jim Carrey.  The cutting style was manic and made Jim look like an absolute lunatic in the best possible way.  I immediately started getting my Mad TV material together to cut a demo reel that did the same thing for me.  Rich LaBrie, a great guy and talented Mad TV editor, worked with me on putting together the cut at a facility-for-hire in Burbank.

The weeks of hard work paid off; the reel ended up in the hands of Jeffrey Katzenberg and Steven Spielberg, and later that year I was signed to a massive two-year holding deal at Dreamworks SKG.  I appeared in Evolution and Spin City during that time and worked on numerous film and television concepts for them.  Creatively it was a very exciting.

The lesson of this demo reel was poignant for me: when a vision for something seizes you, see it through and interesting things will follow.

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Pat Kilbane

Pat Kilbane is best known for his three-year run on Fox's "Mad TV," though many remember him as the Anti-Kramer in the "Seinfeld" episode "The Bizarro Jerry." Also a writer, Pat spent two years under contract with Dreamworks developing science-fiction concepts for television and recently authored "The Brain Eater's Bible," a field manual and manifesto for zombies.

7 CommentsLeave a comment

  • Brilliant stuff, your impressions are as good and even better than anybody. I also liked the Mel Gibson Lethal Weapon character, which I didn’t notice…

    Some of these I had forgotten about and I was laughing out loud as I watched them again. I really want to see the Andy Griffith episode again where you cut off the ear of Floyd the Barber. So funny!

    When you were on the show, it was the best. I can’t wait till I can get those seasons on dvd. Mad was much, much funnier than SNL. Those sketches still hold up for their creativity imho.

    My question is did you write some of the sketches as well? Would the cast create their characters themselves and write the material themselves? Or would a writer come up with an idea, and then it was the comedian’s challenge to see if they could play the part?

    • Thanks, Jay!

      In answer to your question, during the time I was there, the actors were not technically on the writing staff the way they are at SNL, but we did do a lot of writing, and it was a combination of all of the scenarios you describe. The creative collaboration was an insane amount of fun.

  • Pat Kilbane you were awesome at MAdtv, I especially liked the coffee guy sketch. My question is what was your favourite sketch that you did in Madtv?

    • Hey Aaron, I had a lot of favorites and liked different sketches for different reasons. I never had more onstage adrenaline than when I did the first Coffee Guy sketch, but I never had more of a sense of family with my castmates than I did in our Wizard of Oz sketch. The Howard Stern show open I did, where the impression fooled our audience at first, was also a thrill. What was your favorite?

  • I’ve been recently watching a lot of your skits from MadTV I found on youtube. It brought back lots of memories from when I was a kid staying up on Saturday nights never missing an episode. I always thought that MadTV was far superior to SNL especially around the time you were on the show when MadTV really hit its stride. Some of my favorite sketches of yours were the Rocket Revengers skits, the Rob Zombie/Randy Newman skit, the Vancome Lady/Howard Stern skit, and the lowered expectations- Marilyn Manson skit.

    • Hey Billy! I appreciate your compliment, brother. When I was a kid there was SNL, SCTV, Evening at the Improv and other comedy shows that were the staple of my Saturday nights. It was pretty amazing getting to perform on a show like Mad TV and be part of some other kid’s Saturday nights.

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