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Collection of outtakes from TV's ALF
April 20, 2010 7:29 PM   Subscribe

Outtakes from one of America's most beloved television programs, ALF. Oh, and NSFW.
posted by item (39 comments total) 19 users marked this as a favorite

 
Puppeteers seem to just be all-around awesome.
posted by Decimask at 7:36 PM on April 20, 2010


Is it really any wonder Max Wright turned to smoking crack?
posted by briank at 7:37 PM on April 20, 2010 [2 favorites]


I'm not sure I want to click a NSFW Alf link...
posted by schmod at 7:40 PM on April 20, 2010


Let's sacrifice your career for an weekend in Iowa.
posted by eddydamascene at 7:50 PM on April 20, 2010 [7 favorites]


That last link makes the Alf set seem like a very unpleasant place to work.
posted by bunglin jones at 7:50 PM on April 20, 2010 [2 favorites]


Yeah, I was thinking the same thing.... that puppeteer seems like kind of a jerk.
posted by Malor at 7:55 PM on April 20, 2010


ALf id the Muppet Dark Side.
posted by The Whelk at 7:56 PM on April 20, 2010


.. and a quick look at wikipedia confirms that it wasn't fun at all
posted by bunglin jones at 8:04 PM on April 20, 2010


A+++ WOULD WONDER ABOUT SEXUAL HARASSMENT FILED AGAIST PUPPETS AGAIN
posted by cmoj at 8:04 PM on April 20, 2010


Did you mean to say "Alf id" because it's pretty brilliant!
posted by Mister_A at 8:17 PM on April 20, 2010 [1 favorite]


about 10 years ago my mom worked the ringling brothers show here in town, and I was able to get backstage, just because i had this magic power of being able to be like "my mom is back there" and the security would let me through. we saw Michu Meszaros and it was so surreal to see that small of an adult.

My mom apparently met him, and he actually would talk about being on alf, but i fail to remember if he had any good stories.
posted by djduckie at 8:23 PM on April 20, 2010 [1 favorite]


Christ, what an alfhole.
posted by turgid dahlia at 8:23 PM on April 20, 2010 [4 favorites]


From the Wikipedia page:
"Fusco was secretive about his character up until the series premiere. During the show's production, Fusco refused to acknowledge that the puppet ALF was anything other than an alien. All involved with the production were cautioned not to give away any of ALF's secrets."

Uh, what secrets? That he was a puppet? What the fuck?
posted by Saxon Kane at 8:26 PM on April 20, 2010 [1 favorite]


Jesus, I didn't thin Alf could be any more draining.
posted by nola at 8:30 PM on April 20, 2010


Outtakes from one of America's most beloved television programs, ALF .

I dispute the premise of this FPP.
posted by bicyclefish at 8:31 PM on April 20, 2010 [1 favorite]


It is a BFD!
posted by sswiller at 8:34 PM on April 20, 2010


In case anyone needs a refresher on what an episode of ALF was like, here's Season 2 Ep. 7 (warning: youtube commercials), wherein "ALF helps Lynn boost her self-confidence by enrolling her in a beauty pageant." Ha ha ha! The laugh track is really insipid, but not as much as the writing. God, I hated that show.
posted by dammitjim at 8:47 PM on April 20, 2010


dammitjim: In case anyone needs a refresher on what an episode of ALF was like, here's Season 2 Ep. 7 (warning: youtube commercials), wherein "ALF helps Lynn boost her self-confidence by enrolling her in a beauty pageant." Ha ha ha! The laugh track is really insipid, but not as much as the writing. God, I hated that show.

Yet another example of a perfectly pretty girt who grew up playing a character who was written as somehow awkward and as the butt of jokes about her looks (see also: Tracy "Carol Seaver" Gold") in a relatively harmless sitcom who also ended up with an eating disorder... yucks all around.

This is why some people hate Liz Lemon.
posted by MCMikeNamara at 8:53 PM on April 20, 2010 [1 favorite]


I dispute the premise of this FPP

ALF disputes the premise of your face. Ha!
posted by item at 8:56 PM on April 20, 2010 [4 favorites]


I found it amazing that the puppeteers remained in character even after Fusco flubbed the lines - ALF's body language was totally lifelike... I guess this explains it:

Fusco refused to acknowledge that the puppet ALF was anything other than an alien. All involved with the production were cautioned not to give away any of ALF's secrets...
Paul Fusco was the principal puppeteer. He used one hand to control ALF's mouth leaving the other free to control one of the puppet's arms. A second puppeteer, Lisa Buckley, accompanied Paul under the stage and operated the other arm. Together with a third person (Bob Fappiano), who controlled ALF's facial and ear movements via an RC controller offstage, they worked in concert to make ALF's movements fluid and believable. During tapings Paul would wear a "halo" which was used to record his voice for the ALF character. All of this made for a painstaking process and there were countless mistakes and retakes.

posted by KokuRyu at 9:44 PM on April 20, 2010


"Goddamn hoodoo" may be my new favorite non-sequiter swearword.
posted by Windopaene at 11:08 PM on April 20, 2010


"How curious and how bizarre."

The lack affect on the part of the other actors is kind of unsettling.
posted by From Bklyn at 11:37 PM on April 20, 2010


Saxon Kane: "Uh, what secrets? That he was a puppet? What the fuck?"

I was an avid young TV watcher at the time and I remember this pretty clearly. The lead up publicity to the show revealed very little about the show, including not ever showing the puppet. I don't even remember if there was much of any hint that the show would be a sit-com about a wisecracking alien - there was definitely zero indication that said alien was depicted by a puppet.
posted by idiopath at 12:41 AM on April 21, 2010


I kill me ~ I picked that up from ALF
posted by infini at 12:48 AM on April 21, 2010


Wow, Andrea Elson really doesn't look amused…

I would prefer not to taint my childhood memories with behind the stage stuff, but seeing as the ALF cast spiralled into a dysfunctional hell, it allows for watching the show again, only this time trying to see the actors flinch. Perhaps if we edit out the laugh track and add something more Lynchian?
posted by monocultured at 1:37 AM on April 21, 2010


Did anybody watch far enough into the clip where Alf was saying "nigger nigger nigger nigger" inexplicably? because that was pretty weird.
posted by ryaninoakland at 5:09 AM on April 21, 2010 [3 favorites]


Weird indeed. I'm assuming that it was some kind of Tourette's joke.
posted by i_cola at 5:36 AM on April 21, 2010


Weird indeed. I'm assuming that it was some kind of Tourette's joke.

I'm vaguely sure that it's actually Fusco doing pronunciation exercises, which some performers utilize, although it's a rather poor choice.

I recall an interview with John de Lancie ("Q" on Star Trek) talking about making money as an actor performing in TV pilots, and how that can backfire on you - he mentions an actress friend who said she'd done a pilot for this terrible sitcom about an alien and nobody would pick it up and it was a quick paycheck. And of course, that was ALF. A little extra checking and comparing ages shows it was likely Anne Schedeen.

When I ran an ISP, one of my customers had one of these outtake reels, but in realmedia format - I am glad there are more, and not in that format.
posted by jscott at 6:13 AM on April 21, 2010 [2 favorites]


infini: "I kill me ~ I picked that up from ALF"

"You, kill me? Hey fuck you! I kill me! And you.
posted by bwg at 7:09 AM on April 21, 2010 [2 favorites]


Yeesh, the film set had that cranky, creepy, 80's "coked out" feeling.
posted by bonobothegreat at 7:33 AM on April 21, 2010


ALF the series was painful, but strangely, the ALF cartoon was remarkably good, and what I recall being the second half hour, ALF Tales, was even better. The comparison to Jay Ward of Rocky and Bullwinkle/Fractured Fairy Tales etc. that someone makes in one of those reviews is not overstated; it's possibly the last bit of really clever writing that the old Saturday morning cartoon lineup ever saw.
posted by George_Spiggott at 8:55 AM on April 21, 2010


That was a horrible television show.
posted by jeff-o-matic at 9:06 AM on April 21, 2010


Is it really any wonder Max Wright turned to smoking crack?

He's not the only one. See also ALF writer Jerry Stahl's Permanent Midnight.
posted by Sys Rq at 9:56 AM on April 21, 2010


Ah! I knew that name sounded familiar.
posted by The Whelk at 10:00 AM on April 21, 2010 [1 favorite]


one of America's most beloved television programs
bewhatnow?

I was living in Denmark at a time when I'm assuming ALF was the cheapest US television export, and it was one of the few English-language programs for me to watch, so I watched them all.. If my 13 year old self thought it was mindless drivel, I can only imagine how well it's aged. Yikes. I especially couldn't stand the father's acting.
posted by hypersloth at 3:44 PM on April 21, 2010


I'm assuming ALF was the cheapest US television export

It couldn't possibly have been cheaper than this. ALF was actually on par with the quality of family sitcoms in the 1980s; they were all shit.

"ALF helps Lynn boost her self-confidence by enrolling her in a beauty pageant."

Compare. Just sayin'.
posted by Sys Rq at 4:01 PM on April 21, 2010 [1 favorite]


i wish they'd bring Alf back
posted by omarpeppy at 8:17 PM on April 21, 2010


they were all shit.
Ouch, fair enough. Selective memories I guess. I was fortunate enough to only ever encounter Small Wonder in reruns in the States, but I guess I conveniently overlooked the fact that the show had aired quite a bit in my absence before being canceled. According to wiki, both shows lasted four (four!) years.
Also, just realized that ALF was on in DK at pretty much the same time it was in the US, so it couldn't have been that cheap. Meanwhile, Sky tv (at the time only available with cable) offered Hogan's Heroes (far better IMO)

Compare. Just sayin'.
I still stand by my assertion that the father on ALF was the most painful thing to watch.
posted by hypersloth at 9:48 PM on April 21, 2010


Sys Rq, before I clicked on your link, I KNEW that was going to be Small Wonder. It is almost astonishing that such a terrible, terrible show made it past a pilot.
posted by nushustu at 10:03 AM on April 22, 2010


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