Funnylady Carol Burnett loves to relive memories of her classic 1967-78 variety show in charming (and highly rated) CBS specials. Tonight at 10 pm/ET, she's doing Let's Bump Up the Lights, a different kind of salute to her sketchcom, which also serves as a reunion special for former castmates Tim Conway, Vicki Lawrence, Harvey Korman and Lyle Waggoner.
OK, they've done the 25th anniversary show. In 2001, they did an outtakes special called Showstoppers. What's left? Bump winds up what Burnett sees as her Carol Burnett Show reunion trilogy. "A very big section of our show was questions and answers, where I came out at the top of the show," she recalls. "We never had a plant in the audience. I never knew what anybody was going to ask and I didn't know what I was going to answer. So what we did with [Bump] was try to find the funniest clips of the Q&As, but also get the whole gang together and take questions from a present-day audience."
The gang's all here for this special, including former regular Lyle Waggoner, who was conspicuously and curiously absent from Showstoppers. And Burnett wants to clear that up. "[Lyle wasn't included] because we were showing outtakes and bloopers, and Lyle was always perfect," she says. "We didn't have any outtakes of Lyle. And I could kick myself because I didn't explain that when we aired [Showstoppers]. A lot of people thought, 'What's wrong? Where's Lyle?' But he's back on this one, and he's just adorable. We have whole big thing on way back when all the ladies wanted to kiss him; there are some funny clips with that."
As for TV's current entertainment offerings, Burnett says she's still obsessed with All My Children, but is no fan of reality TV. "It bothers me — there's so much of it," she laments, then adds, "If we had our old show, you'd see us doing takeoffs."