Amy Sedaris predicts the future and celebrates comedy’s past

A few months ago, Dorothy Snarker told us to be on the lookout for Amy Sedaris to guest star on The Closer. Happily, her time on the show draws near.

Sedaris plays Fritz’s sister Claire. When we last saw Brenda (Kyra Sedgwick) and company, Fritz (Jon Tenney) had issued an ultimatum: marry me or I’m outta here. Perhaps Claire appears on the scene to help plan a wedding. Not that I really want Brenda to get married.

Claire is a sort of psychic, although she calls herself an “intuitionist.” I’m not sure what the distinction is, but I’m sure Sedaris will make it funny.

Fritz, being the down-to-earth sort, is embarrassed by Claire’s woo-woo inclinations, but she gets along with Brenda famously. In fact, she even helps the LAPD with one of Brenda’s cases. Look for Sedaris in the Feb. 16 and Feb. 23 episodes.

You don’t have to wait that long to see the divine Ms. S., however. She narrates a three-part PBS documentary Make ‘Em Laugh, a history of comedy in America, starting later this week. Sedaris told the Television Critics Association that the series gave her new insight into some comedy greats she didn’t know too well.

“I learned a lot. I was never a big Charlie Chaplin fan, and it made me appreciate him a little bit more. Phyllis Diller, I loved. She made her own clothes, dragged her kids along with her. She really magnified the fact she was unattractive, and I love that. And Mae West. I was never a big fan of Mae West, but I didn’t realize she wrote all that stuff, and I didn’t know about all the problems that she had, and that made me appreciate her.”

Sedaris also did a companion Web video about online comedy, even though she was a little late to the internet revolution herself:

I got a computer maybe four years ago because I have a rabbit and the rabbit got sick. It was too late to call the House Rabbit Society, so I thought I better get a computer because the next time she gets sick, I’ll be able to go on Ether Bunny and find out what’s going on. Then I got iChat because I can just hold my rabbit up, call the House Rabbit Society and say, “Do you see this scab? What does it mean?” And then they can see it. See, I’m getting there.

You can watch the 30-minute online episode here.

Make ‘Em Laugh premieres Jan. 14, but since local stations set their own schedules, check your public television channel for day and time.

Does Amy Sedaris make you laugh? Will you be watching The Closer and the PBS special?

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