Second City Television, commonly shortened to SCTV, is a Canadian television sketch comedy show that ran between 1976 and 1984. It was created as an offshoot from Toronto 's Second City troupe. It is a rare example of a Canadian show that moved successfully to American TV.
The show's premise is the broadcast day of a fictitious TV station (later network) in the town of Melonville. Melonville's location is left unspecified; the very earliest episodes imply it is in Canada, but most later episodes place it in the US.
A typical episode of SCTV presents a compendium of programming seen on the station throughout its broadcast day. A given episode could contain SCTV news broadcasts, sitcoms, dramas, movies, talk shows, kid shows, commercial send-ups hawking nonexistent products, and game shows. Several "shows" are seen regularly on SCTV, including SCTV News; soap opera The Days of the Week; late night movie features Monster Chiller Horror Theater and Dialing For Dollars; and Great White North (a show centered around two Canadian 'hosers' ), among others. Many other SCTV shows are seen only once, such as game shows like Shoot at the Stars in which celebrities are literally shot at like shooting gallery targets, or full-blown movie spoofs like Play It Again, Bob in which Woody Allen (Rick Moranis ) tries to get Bob Hope (Dave Thomas ) to star in his next film. Episodes also feature a range of SCTV-produced promos (for imaginary future shows) and commercials, such as spots for "Al Peck's Used Fruit" or "Shower in a Briefcase", or a PSA that helpfully describes "Seven Signs You May Already Be Dead".
Also seen fairly frequently, particularly in later episodes, are behind-the-scenes plots focusing on life at the station. These often feature Guy Caballero (Joe Flaherty ), SCTV's cheap, tyrannical owner and president, who, despite being perfectly ambulatory, uses a wheelchair to earn "respect" (i.e., sympathy) from employees and viewers. Also seen regularly are weaselly, sweating station manager Maurice "Moe" Green (Harold Ramis ), succeeded in the position by flamboyant, leopard-skin clad, foul-mouthed Mrs. Edith Prickley (Andrea Martin ); vain variety star Johnny LaRue (John Candy ); washed-up entertainers such as singer Lola Heatherton (Catherine O'Hara ) and comedian Bobby Bittman (Eugene Levy ); news anchors Floyd Robertson (Flaherty) and Earl Camembert (Levy), talk-show host Sammy Maudlin (Flaherty), cult-stardom-destined and beer-addled brothers Bob and Doug McKenzie (Moranis and Thomas), and many others.
The small cast, typically six to eight members at any given time, play a wide variety of other station roles ranging from program hosts to commercial spokespersons. They also impersonate numerous popular celebrities appearing on the station's programming.
Season 2 opening
Season 3 opening