This Is What It Would Have Looked Like If Billy Joel Starred in an ‘80s Sitcom

How would the world of TV comedy look if the Piano Man took his talents to the multi-camera sitcom?
This Is What It Would Have Looked Like If Billy Joel Starred in an ‘80s Sitcom

Say hello to Hollywood, Mr. Long Island has a sitcom!

That’s how I imagine TV Guide would have reported on Billy Joel’s 1981 sitcom The William Joel Show, if such a show ever existed. In real life, the closest the Piano Man ever came to being a sitcom star is when he composed the theme song for the two-season sitcom Bosom Buddies starring Tom Hanks in 1980. But thanks to the power of video editing, one fan managed to make an intro sequence at least on par to that of Bosom Buddies that imagines a world where, fresh off his hit single “It’s Still Rock and Roll to Me,” Joel decided to capitalize on his popularity to pivot into TV comedies.

Back in 2022, comedy writer-director Rachel Lichtman posted a promo for the fictional The William Joel Show in promotion of the bizarro fake-TV station Programme 4, confusing Joel fans across the internet and inspiring the hilarious Barstool Sports post, “What In Sam Hell Is This Intro to ‘The William Joel Show’ Starring Billy Joel?” No need to be angry, young man.

In Lichtmans fake show, Joel is joined by bandmate Liberty DeVitto, who has been playing drums for Joel since the 1970s, as well as of-the-era actors such as Two of a Kind's Vincent Bufano and Tony Award-winner Dinah Manoff, who may be best known by the average 1980s TV-watcher as one of the Pink Ladies in Grease. On The William Joel Show, the legendary pop singer and piano player is, apparently, an anchor on News 52 Long Island by the name of Bill Carlton who tackles such timely topics as womens liberation and radioactive waste.

If laugh tracks arent quite the Piano Mans speed, he also could have gone the route of The Adventures of Young Billy Joel as imagined by Nick Kroll on his self-titled sketch show:

However, its likely that the idea of having his own comedy TV show never occured to Joel, whose only acting credit as any character other than Billy Joel is a voice role in the Dickens-inspired animated Disney musical Oliver & Company in 1988. Sadly for his more comedy-loving fans, Joel never made the attempt to break into TV acting. But, if he ever did, Im sure The William Joel show would only be slightly less entertaining than a hypothetical sitcom by Elton John.

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