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John Oliver Pays His Respects To Martin Short's Weirdest Movie

By Andrew Sanford | TV | September 23, 2022 |

By Andrew Sanford | TV | September 23, 2022 |


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Earlier this week John Oliver was a guest on Late Night with Seth Meyers. It’s always fun to see the two hosts interact. They seem like such good friends! But this day was extra special. Yes, Oliver was there on the same day that an old person who died because they were old was being buried. Yes, that was a big part of their discussion. But what I’d like to focus on is Oliver talking about Martin Short’s weirdest movie: Clifford.

If you are not familiar with Clifford, here’s the basic rundown. Charles Grodin plays an engineer who agrees to watch over his mischievous, ten-year-old nephew while the boy’s parents take a trip to Honolulu. The ten-year-old boy is played by then 40-year-old Martin Short. You read that correctly, but just to drive home how bizarre the movie is, here is a trailer.

I distinctly remember being a young boy and my younger brother came home from the video store with a Clifford movie. He assumed that it was about the Big Red Dog. He was incorrect. We loved the movie regardless, having already been made familiar with Martin Short through Three Amigos and the Ed Grimley cartoon (yes, that also exists). For years, if you had told me I imagined the movie, I would have believed you.

It’s real, and it is a favorite of Kate Norley, a former combat medic and John Oliver’s wife. Oliver received his most recent Emmy from Clifford himself and ends up talking about the movie with Meyers for longer than I would expect anyone would.

The Clifford aspect of this interview was so much fun, but it’s worth mentioning that at one point, Oliver references a spy being contacted by the British Consulate. The spy he mentions has the initials “JB,” but it is not who you would expect.