Q: Remember "Mad TV"? Did any of the cast members go on to do anything big? 

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Adam Thomlison / TV Media

A show with a record like "Mad TV," on the air for 15 seasons, would normally not be considered an also-ran. That is, unless it's working in the shadow of a show like "Saturday Night Live" (48 seasons and counting).  

So many comedy giants got their start on "SNL" that we forget that many owe a similar debt to "Mad TV," a similar sketch-comedy show that ran on Fox, CW and elsewhere between 1995 and 2016.  

Two names in particular rise to the top: Key and Peele. Keegan-Michael Key ("Schmigadoon!") and Jordan Peele ("Nope," 2022) have gone on from "Mad TV" to huge success, together as stars of aptly titled the "Key and Peele" sketch show, and later separately. Peele, for example, is now raking in accolades as he revolutionizes the horror-movie genre with hits such as "Get Out" (2017) and "Us" (2019). 

But they're far from the only famous alumni.

Ike Barinholtz, for example, went on to other TV-comedy fame, including the recent hit miniseries "History of the World: Part II," which he wrote, produced and starred in. 

Alex Borstein was a cast member on "Mad TV" before finding fame as Lois Griffin (and a million other characters) on Fox's "Family Guy," and now in Prime Video's "The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel."

Orlando Jones was a regular on the first two seasons of "Mad TV," prior to launching a varied entertainment career that's included hit TV shows ("Sleepy Hollow," "American Gods"), films (such as 2002's "The Time Machine") and even his own talk show ("The Orlando Jones Show," which only lasted a season on FX). 

I could go on. Like "SNL," "Mad TV" had a rotating cast list and liked to gamble on fresh young talent. As such, it is also a show that's launched a huge number of comedy careers. 


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