Photo of Daniel Tosh from his show Tosh.0
Daniel Tosh's show set the stage for an entire genre of clip commentary comedy. (Image via Google Images)

Comedy Central Cancels All Live-Action Series, Including the Fan Favorite ‘Tosh.0’

The classic show isn’t taking the split from the network too hard; instead, its host is using this opportunity to go back to his stand-up roots.

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Photo of Daniel Tosh from his show Tosh.0

The classic show isn’t taking the split from the network too hard; instead, its host is using this opportunity to go back to his stand-up roots.

His comedy isn’t for everyone. He’s abrasive, picks on every demographic and defines inappropriateness, but his tongue-in-cheek haughtiness inspired a craving for crassness — one Comedy Central was quick to satisfy by providing him a 30-minute block of primetime broadcast real estate for 11 consecutive years. During its over decade-long lifespan, the show “Tosh.0” annually pulled in millions of viewers, creating a cult-like fan base, which I joined halfway through its first season in 2009.

If you’ve never seen “Tosh.0,” you should, and you still can as Pluto TV has a “Tosh.0” channel dedicated entirely to streaming all of the show’s past episodes. The premise? Essentially, it’s a clip commentary show. This genre is relatively common now, but at the time, its only counterpart was the subpar “Talk Soup.” Since then, the niche of shows that critique web clips has quickly become cookie-cutter, yet “Tosh.0,” the frontrunner of the genre, continues to have an unmitigated appeal that draws in fans thanks to its host, Daniel Tosh.

Tosh, a Floridian turned Angeleno, started making a name for himself on the stand-up circuit in 2001. After a slew of comedic appearances on late-night shows like the “Late Show with David Letterman,” he landed his own 30-minute stand-up special on Comedy Central. Once the network recognized Tosh as the comedic unicorn that he is, it quickly cast the contractual net, making him the executive producer and host of “Tosh.0.”

The first season’s plan for 10 meager episodes quickly expanded into 16 due to the show’s breakout success. Each following season contained 25 episodes that were strategically broken up so that half the season would air during the winter and spring and the other half during the summer and fall. This duality helped retain fan interest and enticed viewers to stay connected.

Each season has a new theme, each of which provides the inspiration for Tosh’s wardrobe. In “The Season of Brad,” Tosh dons an array of Brad Pitt looks, like Louis de Pointe du Lac from the movie “Interview with the Vampire.” The ever-changing apparel lends an additional comedic element to the series, keeping it refreshing.

Every episode is comprised of a variety of clips, ranging from extremely funny to super weird to downright gross. Iconic segments are interspersed throughout each episode’s video bundle. There’s also the video breakdown, during which Tosh leans into his usual drive-by style of quick wit as he replays the clip.

“Let’s put 20 seconds on the clock and see how many funny comments we can make,” is the infamous signal that is pretty self-explanatory; a timer runs along the bottom half of the screen, acting as a backdrop to Tosh’s rapid-fire sarcasm.

The show progresses to its midpoint, where we come to the portion of the show titled “Web Redemption,” which later evolved into “CeWEBrity Profiles.” These 5- to 10-minute segments of the show feature Tosh as he interacts with some of the world’s more eclectic personalities.

This league of defunct internet stars includes everyone from a partygoer who almost lost his nose due to drunken swordplay to a young girl who forgot the words to the national anthem mid-performance on a live, televised event. Each of the episode’s chosen guests turned CeWEBrity, due to a hilariously embarrassing or shocking viral video, is then brought to Hollywood to be interviewed by Tosh.

It’s during these interviews we also get a glimpse of Tosh’s personality, which is honestly delusively charming and heightens the viewer’s addiction to the show. After conversing with his guest, preparations for the redeeming reenactment are made. The bit comes full circle when Tosh asks the CeWEBrity if they’re ready to give it another shot, and an epic redo ensues.

There’s no prerequisite for the individuals he brings on his show, no bias against one’s origins and no guest discrimination. Tosh has included web redemption reunions during some of the season’s final episodes, bringing back three of his CeWEBrities in a sort of “Where are they now?” update special.

His 30 minutes of airtime usually wrap up with a variety of semiregular segments, including the Viewer Clip of the Week, Twitten By or “Is it Racist?” Tosh has also featured some audience interactive bits as well as a few movie commentaries for films like “Tip Toes,” the movie in which Gary Oldman plays a little person. (Seriously, he plays a little person whose vertically inclined twin brother is played by Matthew McConaughey. Makes sense.)

For the fans who find that 30 minutes of Tosh time just isn’t enough, he has three stand-up specials that are satirically saturated gold. I’ve been fortunate enough to see Tosh’s stand-up live, and while I can’t claim to be a comedy buff, I have a few to compare it to, and his was by far the best.

I encourage any fan of comedy to see Tosh’s stand-up, which he has been doing a lot more of lately. With his show now canceled, Tosh has taken to revisiting his comedic roots, and with an abundant lineup scheduled for the remainder of the year, there’s ample opportunity to get the chance to go. His stand-up is trademark Tosh but on steroids. He’s an equal opportunist, making fun of those from all walks of life, famous or not; there’s a personal element that the television series lacks, making the stand-up unrivaled.

That’s why Comedy Central’s decision to narrow their programming down to only adult cartoons, topical series like “The Daily Show” and animated reboots is so odd. Why cut the 11-year running series that accrued a legion of diehard fans? Whatever the case, it’s Comedy Central’s loss, and seeing as Tosh’s net worth now sits at a pretty $20 million, I doubt he’ll be strapped for cash anytime soon. Thankfully there is talk of the show hunting for a new network home, so fingers crossed.

Writer Profile

Megan Heenan

Nevada State College
B.S. in Environmental & Resource Science, Minor in Professional Writing

Hello! My name is Megan. I’m originally from San Francisco, California, but now live in Las Vegas, Nevada. I’m currently completing my last semester at Nevada State College. I love animals, photography, reading and gardening.

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