Readers are “In Such Good Company” with Carol Burnett

Brittany Strelluf

  • Missouri Critic

I remember the first time I ever really watched Carol Burnett on television.

It was in the year 2008, and she was the guest on an episode of Oprah. She was being funny and gracious, telling stories about her entertainment career, sharing laughs, and even performing her famous Tarzan call.  Later, I caught bits of her career on internet clips from her long-running show and enjoyed them tremendously. 

So when I was offered receive a copy of her book; In Such Good Company,  in exchange for a review, I knew I had to seize the opportunity. 

This book is described by the publisher as “Carol’s love letter to a golden era in television history through the lens of her brilliant show.” I have to agree wholeheartedly with that summation. 

In preparing for this book Carol Burnett re-watched all 276 episodes of twenty-five-time Emmy-Award winning show that made television history. Her attention to detail and warm affection of her show shine through.  

I would of course recommend this book to any fan of Carol Burnett and her incredible work in television, film and Broadway that earned her accolades like the Presidential Medal of Freedom and Kennedy Center Honors. I would also recommend this to comedic actors, comics, improvisational comics, as well as character actors such as myself. 

Honest, funny, and lighthearted this book is easily one of the most pleasant memoirs I have had the pleasure of reading.  Carol reflects on time spent with other legends like Lucille Ball, Gloria Swanson, and  Rita Hayworth.  As well as other amazing entertainers like Bernadette Peters, Betty Grable, and Betty White. 
Although the stories are wonderfully entertaining. I think my favorite topic Ms. Burnett touched on was how she grew and matured as a person and as an entertainer over the years. Carol has  had a great deal of self deprecating humor woven throughout her comic material. However, In the earliest years, she was called homely, flat-chested, and portrayed as having an unrequited infatuation with fellow actor Lyle Waggoner. They changed that as the show went on.  

Carol Burnett is a legend, and to read that she felt that she had made mistakes early in her career and then sought to learn from those mistakes, grow and move forward is very powerful.  
The short chapter “A Man’s Game” was also quite powerful. It is so important for young actresses to read.

Thank you Carol Burnett for sharing your memories with the world. I’m so glad we had this time together.