The Ben Stiller Show is a sketch show that feels like a collection of minature movies. Each sketch is a brilliant combination of pop culture references from the 80's and 90's. Unlike most sketch shows that choose one target to parody, Ben Stiller's merry men (and woman) combine unrelated concepts to skewer. For example: throw a popular 60's sitcom into a blender with a 90's thriller and what comes out? Cape Munster.
The cast and writers of this variety show reads like a who's who of modern comedy--Ben Stiller, Bob Odenkirk, David Cross, Janeane Garofalo, Andy Dick. Add in the numerous guest stars (Roseanne, Garry Shandling, Colin Quinn-just to name a few) and you've got more talent than most people even dream about.
Unfortunately, the show was before it's time and Fox foolishly cancelled it after only 13 episodes. Luckily for us, all of the principles went on to have successful careers other places.
Overall: Fox's Mad TV is a poor imitation of this brilliant show. However, some of the references are a bit dated, since it hasn't aired in over 15 years.