[Contains a “divorce gun” and SPOILERS!!!]
Although the third season of The Larry Sanders Show (1994) saw Janeane Garofalo appearing in more individual episode than she had in previous years, she was mostly employed as a minor ensemble player, and had roughly the same (insultingly meagre) number of stand-out scenes as she did in the previous season! Feh! In fact, aside from the episode where ‘Paula’ emotionally-blackmailed Danny DeVito into appearing as a guest on the show (ep #3.4), she didn’t get a single storyline to call her own… though that’s still one more subplot than Penny Johnson Jerald got as ‘Beverly’… and at least they both aced the banter they were given throughout the smaller supporting scenes. Meanwhile, Linda Doucett became the show’s de facto female lead, with ‘Darlene’ enjoying a brief dalliance with ‘Larry’ (Garry Shandling) (ep #3.7), attracting an unwanted celebrity stalker (Jon Lovitz) (ep #3.11), and duetting with country-singer Clint Black (ep #3.16). Of course, this was also Doucett’s last season as a cast member, and pretty much the end of her career, so it’s hard to be too bitter about all the exposure she got here… and I do still have a soft-spot for her character, even if Doucett wasn’t necessarily the most accomplished actress on the roster.
As for the guest-stars: Bernadette Peters appeared in ep #3.1 as a guest on Larry’s comeback show, mischievously reading a jokey poem rather than singing. Mimi Rogers returned in ep #3.2, going on a long-delayed date with Larry, which is rudely interrupted by a crazy stalker-lady (Tracey Ellis) who claims to be having his love-child. Sharon Stone headlined ep #3.8, making Larry feel insecure/obscure when they start seriously dating, and he is overshadowed by her movie-star status… while Lisa Edelstein cameoed as Stone’s assistant and go-between with Larry. An Ed-Wood-era Sarah Jessica Parker appeared in ep #3.15, getting repeatedly hit on by ‘Hank’ (Jeffrey Tambor), despite her repeated references to then-boyfriend-now-husband Matthew Broderick*… before an undaunted Hank turned his attention to Mary Gross, who quickly cut him off with a snappy (and well-deserved) put-down. Finally, Linda Gehringer appeared in ep #3.16 as ‘Donna Lasner’, an executive from a rival network that ‘Artie’ (Rip Torn) was having an affair with, much to Larry’s dismay/disgust. Note: Apparently Gehringer also appeared in three episodes of Ally McBeal… twice as a fictionalised version of “Attorney General Janet Reno” (eps #1.14/17) and once as the owner of a bookstore targeted by a Senator on an anti-pornography kick (ep #2.16)… but I didn’t mention her in any of my lengthy posts about that show, because… er… I guess she got crowded out by all the other names…?
* I didn’t realise they’d been together that long… mazel tov to them!