Dick Cavett and Brooks have had a long show-business relationship. They did a series of commercials for Circus Nuts in 1967, available on the CD. There are two of Brooks' appearances (4/16/70 and 1/21/72) from Cavett's talk show and an uproarious interview Cavett conducted in front of a live audience at the Saban Theater in Los Angeles, circa 2010. It was edited and shown on HBO as Mel Brooks and Dick Cavett Together Again and is presented here with an additional 30 minutes from the night.
Brooks has had a longer and more substantial relationship with Carl Reiner, first working together for Sid Caesar. “In The Beginning: The Caesar Years” presents clips from PBS' Caesar's Writers (1996), which brought together Caesar and nine writers from Your Show of Shows and Caesar's Hour. Brooks and Reiner developed a classic recurring bit, which is celebrated in Excavating The 2000 Year Old Man (2012) and bonus routines. Brooks delivered a tribute the only way he can to his dear friend when Reiner was being honored at the American Comedy Awards (1991).
A look at Brooks' career would not be complete without covering his film work. Each DVD concludes with one part of a new five-part series entitled Mel And His Movies where he reflects on the films and their creation. A number of classic songs like "Springtime for Hitler," Madeline Khan singing “I'm Tired” from Blazing Saddles, and “The Inquisition” are available on the CD. The Academy Award-wining short film “The Critic” (1963), featuring his hysterical performance as old man watching an experimental film, is one of the set's highlights. Brooks also did funny voiceover work on the trailer for the Italian swords-and-sandals picture known as My Son, The Hero (1963), which was likely not as entertaining.
The Incredible Mel Brooks is a must-own for his fans and makes for a great entry point for those curious about the man and his work.