NBC (ended 1999)



User Score: 194


NewsRadio Fan Reviews (40)

out of 10
1,635 votes
  • A great comedy

    NEWsRADIO is a very under rated and unappreciated comedy. It wasn't a original concept after all there was WkRP IN CINCINNATI back in the 70s, but there hasn't been anything like it since the show ended. NEWsRADIO brought everything together. A interesting setting, a great cast that included the likes of Phil Hartman, Joe Rogan, Andy Dick, and Maura Tierney. The stories were also great, and the comedy wonderful, which was actually funny unlike most comedies today. NBc didn't give it's due, and didn't treat the show well. The first four seasons are classic, but very sadly after Phil Hartman's murder the show lost it's heart in the fifth season. You could tell the actors were effected, and the comedy and stories lacked what it had in the previous seasons and it marked the end of the show. Still this is a must watch. I'd recommend buying the show on DvD, it's great.
  • The Spirit of this show died when Phil Hartman was killed

    Fantastic, funny and intelligent is all you need to describe Newsradio. They frolicking fun of Andy Dick, Phil Hartman, Joe Rogan and Vicki Lewis coupled with the romance of Dave and Lisa and the perfect Boss Jimmy James made the show a pure pleasure to watch every week even though the dimwits at NBC moved it around ALL THE TIME. Jerks!

    Much like 8 Simple Rules when John Ritter died, Newsradio lost it's luster with the death of Phil Hartman. It was still a great show but it was doomed once Phil was killed by his looney wife. Phil was the reason the show was on the air and watching afterwards always brought the comedy legend Phil Hartman back to life only to snatch it away when you remember his horrid death.
  • A workplace sitcom comedy that blends off-the-wall humor and farce with lovable eccentric characters. A well-written show with some great comic moments!

    I recently renewed my interest in Newsradio upon seeing repeats on TBS. It was an underappreciated show in its day, always hovering on the brink of cancellation. But the writers did an excellent job crafting a workplace comedy revolving around a Newsradio AM company WNYX. Each of the characters for the show had their own eccentricities that you came to learn and love about them. Dave is the boss, with a nerdy past from Wisconsin, who is addicted to coffee. Lisa is the neurotic overachiever, who loves politics and has a surprising past criminal record. Bill is the on-air voice talent for WNYX, with a self-centered ego-locing personality. Matthew is the naive clumsy reporter who worships Bill, loves penguins and cats, and imagines the Hamburgler breaking coffee pots in the station. Catherine is the other on-air voice talent, who is sexy, tart, and wishes there were more minorities in the station. Joe Garelli is the station electrician, who is a fix-it man who makes his own duct tape. Beth is the spunky secretary with a droll sense of humor, and her own unique fashion sense. Finally, Jimmy James is the humorous congenial multi-billionaire owner of the station who loves deal-making, Dave's mom, and misquoting movies. A great comedy show which spawned some funny classic TV episodes. Very similar to Seinfeld in its New York setting and mix of situational and farcical humor, but focused on the workplace setting. It's got a great off-on romance between Dave and Lisa, hilarious writing, and great comedic actors with a lot of pizzazz and chemistry. Should have lasted longer than it did, but it was marred in its final season by the death of Phil Hartmann and the sub-standard replacement of Jon Lovitz into the mix. Great show!
  • What seemed like a run of the mill show is actually a great comedy.

    Back when it was on NewsRadio seemed like just another run of the mill show taking up space, nothing special. But it is actually a great absurdist comedy. From a fairly standard sit-com premise a cast of truely crazy characters grew. Phil Hartman was comedic gold, and the character of Jimmy James is a classic. Whatever your feelings on Andy Dick, the character Matthew was lovable and sad. As the show went on plots became crazier and crazier, untill the fact that they were in a news station had litle of no bearing on events. The last season definately dropped in quality, but untill then it was a quick, silly, and sharp show.
  • One of the funniest shows ever!!

    They just have a perfect combination of hilarious characters and funny scenarios. That is the perfect equation for a successful TV comedy. My favorite character was Joe. His interactions with Katherine are classic. And of course the show wouldnt be complete without Bill McNeill. Andy Dick was a great combination to the show and its the only thing I like him in. DAve and Lisa's relationship storyline was intrical to the whole show. I have no clue why they canceled the show because it was so hilariously funny. When is TV gunna figure out what shows are keepers amd what shows should be canceled.
  • Fabulously funny, I can never stop laughing. A wonderful cast and quirky dialogue.

    I can't remember the first time I saw NewsRadio, but I do remember that I was laughing hysterically. I can't get enough of this show. The cast is extremely funny and talented. Dave Foley comes off as stiff and upright in an easily comical way. Andy Dick, Joe Rogan, and Phil Hartman stir up tons of laughs as they get into wildly outrageous scenarios. Who knew that life at a radio station could be so funny. Maura Tierney, Vicki Lewis, and Khandi Alexander are the Charlie's Angels of funny in this show. The dialogue is quirky and quick and each episode leaves you aching with laughter.

    Absolutely Fabulous!
  • Best sitcom ever.

    Newsradio is the best sitcom ever. All the characters are extremely funny. My favorites are Joe, Bill, and Jimmy. Mostly I like it just because it was so hilarious. As it went on, the show became less and less about radio and more about a bunch of weirdoes doing crazy stuff in front of a radio booth.
  • The Best of the 90's

    This show was personaly one of the top five shows of the 90's, second only to Roseanne. The show had plenty of petential and wasn't done with it, but because of the unfortunate death of the star of the show Phil Hartman the show was unable to live on and that is the only reason for the fact it fell in it's fith season. Aside from all of this it was a triumpit peroid of time that will always be underapreciated by all. This was AWSOME and should be brought back in syndication for the younger viewers to enjoy it.
  • Dave Nelson is brought in to run a news radion station in New York.

    This show is truly underappreciated. Every episode was packed full of brilliant, smart comedy. It included a wonderful cast that had many current stars and soon to be stars. This launched the careers of Joe Rogan, Andy Dick, and Maura Tierny, while continuing stellar careers of Phil Hartman, Dave Foley, Stephan Root, and Khandi Alexander. The beauty was the meshing of everyone to form a cast that had no real standouts. Together, they tackled the business of radio. They dealt with egos, money, and everything else imaginable in the business. The only downfall was the loss of Phil Hartman, tragically murdered by his wife in the middle of the series. The show could never recover from one of its key components missing. Up until that point, though, the show never missed a beat.
  • I rated this show a 10 because there has never and will never be a better show than this. Pure genius and the greatest ensemble cast of all time.

    The sad thing about NewsRadio is that even after Phil Hartman died the show was still better and funnier than any sitcom on these days. And don't even get me started on how great it was WITH Phil Hartman. NewsRadio has the best quotes and sight gags. Each character is so unique and quirky- and there are so many awesome characters. It's definitely worth buying all the seasons. There's not much else I can say.
  • Great show, that ended right when it was suppose to in it's prime I really miss the show especially Phil Hartman who with all the other actors they are amazing and fit together perfectly

    I really enjoy this show
    The actors were perfect for thier roles, got the show on dvd and definitly think that it's still one of the best shows on dvd, I can't wait for the dvd's of the rest of the series

    The show ended right when it should of and even with the last season with john lovitz it was good, but the show even with the death of phil hartmen still made it great, and i would recommend it to everyone

    don't have a favorite character and they really just mixed and matched, the show just was great and top of the show as it should have been.
  • miss this program so much

    This is quality comedy brilliant through its vast range of characters .the star and probably the reasons i love this is phil hartman you may know him from such films and tv series as coneheads,snl and simpsons . In this he plays bill a top radio jockey who loves chasing the money and the fame he has all the best lines and storys. then theres jo rogan from fear factor and ufc hes joe the jock handyman who likes making unhelpful changes to the office and who loves the women .Then theres andy dick from the andy dick show whos matthew the overly camp geek who is a little dence .Then theres the hot beth (vickie lewis)who is crazy and sex mad and likes wearing crazy cloths who assistant to dave (dave foley)who is the radio manager who is just come to the big smoke after living in a small town who soon falls for lisa (Maria tierney e.r)who thinks she should have his job but soon helps him out there is the main boss jimmy james who is hilaroius and kooky and keeps an eye on the money there are 3 people who came and went like katherine ,max who where played by khandi alexander and jon lovitz this should be realesed soon on dvd soon and will be a cult classic again
  • One of my favourite shows.

    Not many sitcoms that I have watched have been as consistently funny as NewsRadio. Every character was likeable and played their roles perfectly, even if Phil Hartman clearly stood above the rest for generating the laughs as Bill McNeal.

    All of the characters are hilarious, but my favourite is Dave, because even though he is the most normal character in the show, he still gets his funny moments, which are even better because of this.

    It is a shame that NewsRadio didn't have the longest run, but the years that it did have were fantastic, and the show ended before it got too stale, which was likely to happen before long without Hartman.
  • a gem in the rough and tumble world of comedy sitcoms

    i miss this show soooo much. dave foley, phil hartman, andy dick and stephen root were an amazing cast, that fed off of each other as the show evolved. even after the tragic death of hartman with the addition of jon lovitz the show still continued its excellence. i loved the original story lines and the relationships that developed between the characters, dave-lisa, dave-jimmy. the show should be a case study on character development (a trait that is so blatantly missing from the crap being spewed out in sitcoms today) here's hoping for more work for dave foley, and another sitcome that can reach the greatness of newsradio! if you havent seen it yet, do yourself a favor and buy the dvd!!
  • A really good show that is mildly interesting. Should've lasted a lot longer!

    A really funny show about a group of co-workers who are friends and work together at a newsradio and help each other. The show was really funny, but became a little desperate and jumped the shark when Bill was shot to death. The episode, "Bill Moves On", is really moving and made me cry. The show should've lasted a lot longer.

    But it deserved a five-season memory.
    Loved it!
  • A fantastically balanced sitcom.

    As a sitcom NewsRadio managed to acheive a character balance that is not often acheived by even the best shows. Many shows that purport to have an ensemble cast are often dominated by single characters whose zany actions dominate comedic moments or by relationships which dominate the more serious times. NewsRadio, though at times dominated by the comedic genius of Phil Hartman, avoided these typical problems by having a cast that could transition from comedic centerpieces into the "straight-men" for other actors. Some of my favorite moments were caused by Dave Foley exiting his generally more stayed role and engaging in sarcastic and hilarious banter, usually with Andy Dick and Joe Rogan. Also the Dave-Lisa relationship was the dominant romantic entanglement but it did not dominate the show in terms of creating an overwhelming pathos as is done by many long-term sitcom relationships. As well, this is one of the few shows that has managed to reign in the manic energy of Andy Dick and not only make him palatable but also make him an integral(not dominating) part of the cast. Finally, Stephen Root, as Jimmy James, created a characterization that, for me, dominates every other role in which I have seen him. When I see him I almost expect a Mr. James type of speech.

    Final word: Fantastic
  • WNYX news radio station in New York.

    I was on the board of the radio station at my college. I looked at Newsradio as the example for what a radio station should be like, unfortunately the show is about a professional New York station, and we could only broadcast to the parking lot. Our station manager always wanted bigger and better, kinda like Bill McNeil, and I was the level-headed one, like Dave or Lisa to bring him down. We had an enginneer, who by the way looked nothing like Joe Rogan. And there was this kid who's show name started with "What's Wrong With..." who was just like Matthew. And our advisor wasn't a millionaire like Jimmy James. Sadly, my life didn't really measure up to the show, but what does.
    Now that I'm out in the real world, I'm pretty sure Newsradio isn't an accurate view of running a radio station, but it is damn funny.
  • Great Show. I miss it.

    being a huge KITH fan, i wasn't sure how Newsradio was going to be...but boy, was i wrong. this was a great show, a throw back to the ensemble cast. They all worked great with each other, and fed off each others energy and made it one of the best shows on the 90's.

    After Phil Hartman died, it was not the same. But when he was around, man, it was a sitcom force to be reckoned with.

    Everything was funny about this show, and i loved the relationship that Dave and Lisa had, i missed it towards the end, but all shows have to keep it fresh.

    Loved the show, and i still miss it.
  • Funniest sitcom of the 1990s?

    A show that would probably fare better today, "NewsRadio" to me is a classic sitcom, one that bridged the gap between the era of "Frasier," "Seinfeld" and the other great three-camera, laugh-track sitcoms and today's comedy series like "The Office" and "Arrested Development." "NewsRadio" combined elements of all of these shows and delivered five seasons of smart, zany, roll on the floor laughing comedy.

    "NewsRadio" felt like a show written by, starring and made for all of the kids who weren't sitting at the "cool kids" table in school. The zany physical humor combined with smart references to pop culture was like manna from heaven for nerds and geeks everywhere. Of course, it also helped having a great cast deliver that dialogue and act out those situations.

    Dave Foley - the Kids in the Hall veteran who was straight man and ringmaster of the circus.

    Maura Tierney - then (and now) drop dead gorgeous, the slightly neurotic news producer anxious to climb the ladder.

    Andy Dick - the class clown, the sweetly innocent (but creepy) manchild.

    Vicki Lewis - a character so funny Kathy Griffin tried to ape her on "Suddenly Susan" (she failed).

    Joe Rogan - the funniest this guy will ever be.

    Khandi Alexander - regal, sassy...sorely underused.

    Stephen Root - the brilliant, motormouth eccentric...even he didn't know sometimes if he was crazy or not.

    And, last and certainly not least, the incomparable genius that was Phil Hartman.

    Obviously, the death of Hartman after Season 4 was a blow to the cast and to the series. However, I think that people who say "NewsRadio" jumped the shark with Hartman's death are mistaken. Granted, it wasn't the same going forward, but it wasn't as if "NewsRadio" turned into crap in Season 5 either. Jon Lovitz came on and created a character that did not replace Bill McNeil, but filled the void caused by his death. The show was still madcap, still fast and furious, when NBC pulled the plug.

    Watching the show again on DVD is a treat; you get to see a terrific ensemble working with great scripts and clearly having a ball. My vote for funniest sitcom of the 1990s, "NewsRadio" is a gem.
  • The crazy life of a radio station

    This show is one of my favorites. The humor wasn't that original in a way but the characters were so well writen and acted that they were part of the humor. Everything they said sounded just right from their mouths.

    And Phill Hartman. God, he was one of the greatest comedians i know. Playing Bill McNeal was one of the greatest moments to him at least I see it like that. He is the number one cynic character on tv. I still quote many his likes like "there comes a time in every friendship when you have to say, I never liked you, get lost, "Let me tell you what I told my brother last Thanksgiving: give me my money back!" or lately when I smoked too much and the morning after went to the bathroom: "It smells like an ashtray when I pee?" Those moments with him are the greatest.

    The second greatest comedian on this show was Andy Dick whos physical comedy was something so funny I haven't seen after the silent films. The other character like the MacGyver like Joe Garelli or the true capitalist(in a satire way)Jimmy James were great. But I have to say that Phil Hartman was the driving force of the show.

    The episodes were often great and I don't know a bad episode on this show. The problem was that it ended too soon. I can understand that. Rest in peace Phil... Jon Lovitz did as good job he could but it was a hard job and it was the best to call it a day. The last seasons were funny enough with the fact that they did actualy anymore any work. The radio station was merely just a place to express the characters. I deeply recommend this one!
  • One of the few sitcoms out there that is funny and clever at the same time.

    This show makes the sitcoms of today pale in comparison. At first, it looks as if it's just a newer version of WKRP in Cincinati. But after awhile, it finally dawns on you that this is much different. The show starts off with Dave Nelson (played as Dave Foley) who just got hired for the News Director position for WNYX. He soon meets the boss who is supposed to be a multi-billionaire called Jimmy James. Soon, Dave meets the current news director who Mr. James makes Dave fire. After a few episodes, you start to place yourselves in other people's shoes and wonder why they act like they do. It's very wacky and keeps you interested in the plot. Which you keep thinking to yourself "what's going to happen next?" This is the kind of comedy that newsradio is like. Not some over-the-top, boring, cliche, sitcom like most that are on network television. Another thing that i've noticed about it is the slightly odd style of comedy. Nevertheless, if you like sitcoms like Everybody loves Raymond, or Less than Perfect, then you'll like NewsRadio.
  • One of the first shows to allow for some depth of character, not just going for the fast laugh all the time.

    News Radio is a slightly underrated show. This probably has something to do with the most unfortunate way it ended, largely due to the murder of Phil Hartman. This left something of a bitter aftertaste. But a show should be judged on the merits of the script-writing, acting and directing that go into it. And the script-writing was innovative. True, it was not the first show to explore the possibilities of making a group of people work together at a radio or TV station (for instance we had 'WKRP in Cincinnati' in the late 70s), but it was a trendsetter in as much as it allowed for elements of real depth of character. Lisa is not just a funny character, she has an attractive and sometimes elusive kind of uncertainty to her, Dave is neither simply a nice guy nor a bad guy. He wants to do the right thing and he has a caring side, but he can also be a little mischievous. Jimmy, the station's owner, acts like a cool capitalist, but we soon find out that he, too, is very sentimental. Bill is totally impossible and overbearing, but there are those moments when you can tell he is just putting that up as a shield. Even Matthew, who is by and large the clown of the station and the series, is a character that manages to gain our sympathy even though we still laugh at his misfortunes and inadequacies. I think Kirk of Gilmore Girls fame owes something to him.

    At any rate I think the show was one of the first to lead television comedy away from almost exclusively going for the fast laugh. 'Seinfeld', which preceded it by a few years, and 'Friends', which had started one year earlier and did not have to cope with any disater befalling a cast member, were more successful and thus probably had more impact on the industry, too, but let us not forget the performances of Bill Foley, Maura Tierney, Phil Hartman, Stephen Root, Andy Dick, Vicky Lewis, Joe Logan and Khandi Alexander. I still think 'News Radio' was the best thing Bill Foley has ever done. Maura Tierney and Khandi Alexander have since moved on to develop their art more than the others, and not giving Khandi enough opportunity to do something with her character was probably the biggest mistake Paul Simms and the other writers made. Still, it is a memorable series.
  • A television classic which is frequently overlooked, NewsRadio is a clever comedy with potential far beyond its 4 year run. A menagerie of quirky characters make this late 90's show a 5 star success.

    One of the things I've noticed over the years is that the language is really what carries the program. I would be hard pressed to find a better suited cast to convey these unique and quirky characters. Indeed, the characters are so complex and well thought out that their possibilites for interaction, as well as individual storylines, is virtually limitless. One only has to look at the variety of material they were able to cover over their four year run to see how refreshing the show could consistently be. Who ever would have thought of putting these personalities together??? There's the coffee addicted News Director from Wisconsin (though he may be a Canadian spy...) who is also a great ventriloquest, knife thrower and tap-dancer, the ditzy red-headed secretary with a bizarre fashion sense, the MacGyver wanna-be, conspiracy theorist handyman, the eccentric billionaire boss, the ultra-weird clutzy spaz, the neurotic perfectionist reporter with a talent for math and plenty of other bizarre personalities. Its true that the tragic death of Phil Hartman affected the show, but not necessarily in a detrimental way. Jon Lovitz was a perfectly suitable replacement. All in all I have to praise the comedic talents off all involved for making the show so spot on. Many dismiss it as too over the top, but that is obviously a creative choice that can be quite appealing. Plot lines like becoming addicted to a white-noise machine or faking a round the world ballooning trip can't be taken too seriously. The show is borderline obsurdist comedy, which is something that is making a subtle comeback in recent months from shows like "Scrubs". One only has to look at episodes like "Sinking Ship" and "Space" to see that the writers never intended to take anything too seriously. The "radio" aspect of the show is perhaps more profound than expected. The diologue is so strong that one can listen to an episode with no video and still follow along perfectly and still be quite amused.

    When all is said and done I would love to see some more episodes. Failing that, the show could quite cheaply and successfully translate to cd with some audio only episode. I'd love to listen to the antics of this radio family on my daily trek to work.
  • Not a spectacular show, but damn good regardless.

    I echo the sentiments that say NewsRadio was an underappreciated show. Yes, at times the show was hard to get (especially during at least half of its final season), but overall it was a good TV show. It's too bad it got cancelled, but not all TV shows have long lives.
  • NR has always had A+ writers on their side and that is why the show still retains its comic vitality years after it has ended.

    Some sites to consider as good resources for this show and others are:

    I believe after watching 2 to 3 episodes anyone to everyone will get hooked. The show is repleat with known comics and up and coming comics. Dave Foley from Kids in the Hall, Phil hartman from Saturday Night Live, and Andy Dick from various cable shows.
  • One of the best shows that was ever made.

    I love this show. It was extremely great. Especially the seasons when Phil Hartman was on it. This show had so many memorable episodes, such as the 'Wacky Ball' one and the 'Space' one. There are shows that tried to copy this one, but none ever reached the comedic level that this one achieved.
  • An imminently watchable classic sitcom that juggles a big cast brilliantly while staying within the format.


    In the 21st century, post-Arrested Development world, we've got a lot of comedy shows that scoff at the three-camera sitcom format that was so popular in the 90's. And let's face it - those sitcoms did get rather old.

    But there were some absolute gems and one of them was NewsRadio, underappreciated/watched though it was at its time. It's always strange to analyze audiences of the past, but I don't understand why it didn't catch on. The cast is brilliant and play off each other effortlessly, the writing is crisp and the studio audience's laughter doesn't even bother you because you're usually laughing along with them.

    I particularly love the way the writers refused to turn Dave and Lisa into another tired will-they-won't-they, but weren't afraid to let go of the romantic relationship when there was no more comedy in it.

    The show was also never afraid to go all out with an AU episode, set in space or aboard the Titanic, and really push the limits of the bland studio setting. Listening to the commentaries on the DVD boxset, you almost get a sense of this rebellious cast and crew, deadset on doing their own thing despite of what the network wanted or required them to do (thus the rat funeral).

    Some people can always put on Friends and never get bored of it. I like a lot of the classic 90's sitcoms but NewsRadio is my show to watch on almost any occasion. Rainy day or a weekend evening, hungover or home ill, I can always watch NewsRadio and be entertained.

  • A great Show I miss Phil Hartman

    What can you say about a show like news radio? I personally think that this was one of the funniest shows of the 90’s. This show was great in it first three seasons until Phil Hartman was no longer with us. This show also has Stephen Root who you may know as Milton from office space. The cast in this show is unbelievable they work great together and end up with a very funny show. My main reason for this review is so that the younger generation who maybe has not heard of it can check it out and maybe even buy the DVD’s.
  • Possibly my favourite US Sitcom of all time.

    I absolutely love NewsRadio.

    As I write this, I'm impatiently waiting for my DVDs to arrive, but despite the fact that I haven't seen it in years, I still find myself laughing at the memory of it.

    Phil Hartman was a genius, and created a classic character in Bill McNeal. I'd love to bore you with all my favourite moments, but there's no way I could do justice to them.

    The episode where he's trying to write his autobiography ("I Suck: The Bill McNeal Story"), the episode where he gets Joe to make him a stun-gun because he's worried about a stalker, the one where he starts to carry a cane - you'll just have to watch them!!
  • NewsRadio is good stuff.

    The best ensemble cast in the history of television...well, almost. Now, the cast reads like a who's who of television stars (Andy Dick, Dave Foley, Phil Hartman, Maura Tierney, Khandi Alexander, and Joe Rogan) and the fact that so many diverse talents gelled into such an amazing and cohesive comedic unit is just amazing. Always funny, never touching, always changing, never poignant, NewsRadio managed to resist NBC's guest-star syndrome and the sitcom's melodramatic side and came up with some of the best 4 years of television comedy in the 90s. Unfortunately I have to detract points for the very iffy fifth season with Jon Lovitz. Still, "NewsRadio" was definitely a precursor to modern-day classic "The Office."
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