Picks and Pans Review: The Joe Piscopo Special

updated 09/24/1984 at 01:00 AM EDT

originally published 09/24/1984 01:00AM

HBO (Saturday, Sept. 22, 10 p.m. ET)

HBO should make three segments of Joe (Saturday Night Live) Piscopo's first solo special into musical-comedy videos so they can be played over and over again on MTV. The first: Piscopo plays Sinatra. As a young Frank, he croons I'll Never Smile Again; as an old Frank, he dreams of his own video, singing Witchcraft with a heavy-metal band. The second: Piscopo as Andy Rooney whining about TV. It's a chance for Joe to show off all his other great impressions—Ted Koppel, David Hart-man, David Letterman, Phil Donahue, even Joan Rivers. The third: A Thriller takeoff. Under the spell of a full moon, Joe, like a werewolf in metamorphosis, turns into Jerry Lewises, a half-dozen of them, emerging from graves to haunt a young woman in the Night of the Living Lewises. These skits are fresh, creative and hilarious. The rest—some stand-up jokes and a guest shot with pal Eddie Murphy playing Carl Lewis—is almost as good, and that's high praise indeed.

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