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The Critic

Season 2 Episode 2

Siskel & Ebert & Jay & Alice

Aired Sunday 12:00 AM Mar 12, 1995 on FOX
out of 10
User Rating
37 votes

By TV.com Users

Episode Summary

Siskel & Ebert & Jay & Alice
After Jay attends The Academy Awards Ceremony, Siskel and Ebert have a fight on the plane ride home and split up. Jay sees his golden opportunity to be a partner to either Siskel or Ebert, but feels they weren't right to be apart so he tries to reunite them.moreless

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  • Awesome episode!

    All jokes and references work perfectly. Where also managed to recreate the perfect chemistry of these two critics.
  • The Best Episode in the Series!

    This episode guest starred Siskel & Eibert and was a brilliant half-hour, I still remember when I was like a twelve-month-old-baby being sat infront of the old tv set to watch it, and laughing at Jay, seems weird, huh? Well I love this show, always have, always will. And it's episodes like these that make me love it. And I'm not the only one that does, this is also Creator/Executive Producer Mike Reiss's favourite ep, and he likes it because "there's very little of our characters in it". The sureal moments make you laugh, like the millions of ones in this episode, but then there's the sweet brilliant storylines that these shows follow, much like seasons 1-3 of Family Guy. This is a fine example the brilliance of the show and it is laughter guarented. Enjoy this great peice of half-hour, sureal, great, animated, sitcom-style, entertainment!!moreless
  • This episode is probably the best episode of the entire series.

    This episode is my favorite episode of the series because there's so much jam-packed into it. Having Jay meet Siskel and Ebert and then try to be one of their partners is a great plot for the show, not only because we get some great character development from Jay and Duke, but we get some great guest stars, too. And since the whole plot revolves around two of the most popular film critics of all time it was a great excuse to throw a lot of great film parodies into the mix. Some of the clips featured in this episode, such as "Planet of the Dogs", are considered by the shows creators to be in the Top Ten Film Parodies as seen on the DVD. And, of course, with Siskel and Ebert as guest stars it also gave the writers an excuse to make fun of the Academy Awards.

    And no episode (especially of a show starring Jon Lovitz) would be complete without a musical number--and this episode had two! The first being a mockery of the Academy Awards ceremony spending too much time on frivolous musical numbers instead of award winners' acceptance speeches, and the second being a heart-felt song of loss and loneliness--featuring the actual voices of Gene Siskel and Roger Ebert! (yes, those are their real voices! And this in the time before Protools.)

    Even the show's creators thought highly of this episode, as it was the one they sent in for Emmy Award consideration. It truly is the embodiment of what is great about "The Critic": character development, music, great film parodies and social commentary with two of the best guest stars you can have on a TV series about a film critic! If you watch only one episode of this series, make it "Siskel & Ebert & Jay & Alice"!moreless
Gene Siskel

Gene Siskel

Voice of Himself

Guest Star

Roger Ebert

Roger Ebert

Voice of Himself

Guest Star

Gene Shalit

Gene Shalit

Voice of Himself

Guest Star

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (2)

  • QUOTES (4)

    • Announcer: And here's Jeremy Hawke, star of the illogical, blasphemous and ultra-violent "Crocodile Ghandi" movies!
      Jeremy: Thank you! Thank you!

    • Jay: That's our show for the night--enjoy the Oscars!
      Production Assistant: You have 28 minutes left!
      (Jay puts his head in his hands and groans)

    • (Jay plays his answering machine)
      Gene Siskel: (on machine) Hey, Jay! It's Gene Siskel. I've decided I'd like you to be my new partner. Let me know if you're game so I can tell Rex Reed to get lost.
      Roger Ebert: (on machine) Jay, it's Roger Ebert. How'd you like to be my new partner? Give me a call so I can get Rex Reed out of my hair.
      Rex Reed: (on machine) Jay, it's Rex Reed. I don't care if you got the job. I've got a new partner.
      (A monkey screeches on the tape)
      Rex Reed: (on machine, proudly) That's right, Pauline Kael!

    • Willy Wonka: Hey, what happen to the candy?
      Jay: (as a giant blueberry) I have no idea.

  • NOTES (7)

    • The creators of this show again had so much faith in this episode, they submitted it for an Emmy Award. It didn't get nominated.

    • Siskel and Ebert actually reviewed The Critic on their show, Siskel and Ebert at the Movies, just as they do at the end of this episode. This was the first and only time that they had ever reviewed a television show.

    • Roger Ebert showed clips of this episode during the Siskel and Ebert at the Movies tribute episode for Gene Siskel.

    • This is Mike Reiss' favorite episode.

    • The newspaper that Duke is reading has the headline "Severed Heads to Wed". The severed heads make several cameo appearences in the background of different episodes.

    • Movies Criticized on "Coming Attractions":
      - "Children of a Lesser Godzilla" (parody of 1986's Children of a Lesser God)
      - "Planet of the Dogs" (a spoof of the 1986 movie Planet of the Apes)
      - "Snow Man" (parody of the the 1988 film Rain Man)
      - "Frau Doubtfire" (a knock at the 1993 film Mrs. Doubtfire)

    • This is the only time Roger Ebert and Gene Siskel ever agreed to play a part in a television or film as themselves, chiefly because they were fans of the show.


    • Oscars
      Jeremy Hawke presents an award wearing glasses. This was a commentary by the writers on how many famous actors would wear glasses when presenting at awards shows to make themselves look smarter.

    • Rex Reed: That's right--Pauline Kael!
      Pauline Kael was the film critic for The New York Times for many years and is considered to be one of the best film critics of all time.

    • Announcer: And now, to make sure we don't finish by midnight, a musical tribute to the film critic!
      This is a reference to the growing length of the Oscar telecast at that time because of superfluous musical numbers. The fact that the musical number in the show is about a critic has more to do with how the writers felt that the Oscars would use anything as an excuse to have a musical number--even a tribute to film critics, than the fact The Critic is about a critic. A few years after this episode aired the Motion Picture Academy decided to do away with all musical numbers to shorten the telecast and bring the ratings back up.

    • Roger Ebert and Gene Siskel's meeting atop the Empire State Building spoofs Sleepless In Seattle, which was inspired by a similar scene in An Affair to Remember.