Thursday, November 05, 2009

Surviving the Holidays With Lewis Black

Premieres on Nov 23, 2009 on the History Channel

Thanksgiving … the Festival of Lights … Christmas Eve. Parade, shopping, family, cards, travel – and effort. Ho, ho, ho! ’Tis the season of survival. We begin a marathon of stress on Thanksgiving, and keep running till we stagger across the finish line on New Year's Day – with a hangover, a potbelly, and enough credit-card debt to make our heads explode.

Following his successful 2008 special History of the Joke, the “Curmudgeon of Comedy” returns to HISTORY to make sense of this 36-day, end-of-year insanity that consumes us all. Armed with history, humor and his trademark ranting, the Grammy winner takes a comedic look at how to survive the “month-long festival of consumption” without losing your mind. The two-hour special,"Surviving the Holidays With Lewis Black," premieres on Monday, November 23 at 8pm ET/PT.

Lewis consults experts in holiday history, anxiety and gift giving. He explores the meaning of Kwanzaa, the history of Chanukah, and the real Saint Nicholas. He interviews turkeys on a turkey farm. He discovers why we drink on New Year’s Eve and why the Detroit Lions always play on Thanksgiving Day. He does a stint as a department store Santa with kids and learns about the Major League Dreidel playoffs. In classic Lewis Black style, he riffs on Hanukkah. During the holidays, we’re expected to smile through an avalanche of responsibilities: cooking, shopping, wrapping, drinking, card-writing, family gatherings, office parties, bills… but how? And why?

Throughout the special, fellow comedians bring vastly different perspectives to holiday anxiety. They include Bob Saget, Craig Ferguson, Ron White, Joy Behar, Larry Miller, Richard Belzer, David Alan Grier, Shelley Berman, Rip Taylor, Nancy Giles, Franklyn Ajaye, among others. Their survival tips run the gamut from stocking up on Vicodin and Ace bandages to being born in Europe to changing the name of Black Friday to “Mauve Friday.” Even sports writer Mike Lupica is on hand to share, among other things, what his wife expects him to do over the holidays. Lewis’s advice? “It's hard to find something to help you survive … so I do what I love the most: I complain.”

Executive Producers for HISTORY are David McKillop and Carl H. Lindahl. "Surviving the Holidays With Lewis Black" is produced for HISTORY by Triage Entertainment and Black Humor. Executive Producers for Triage Entertainment are Stephen Kroopnick and Stu Schreiberg. Executive Producers are Lewis Black, Mark Lonow and Jo Anne Astrow.