Many of my favorite TV shows of all time are sketch comedies like Monty Python’s Flying Circus, Saturday Night Live, SCTV, In Living Color and Mad TV. While this genre typically targeted adults, the TV series All That proved that G-rated sketch shows could be just as funny.
All That was a sketch comedy television series created by TV comedy veterans Mike Tollin and Brian Robbins that originally aired on the kids’ cable network Nickelodeon for six seasons from 1994 to 2000. It was arguably the funniest kids’ show on the planet, and its humorous tone was set by the man who The New York Times called the Norman Lear of children’s television Dan Schneider, who went on to create popular Nickelodeon shows like Kenan & Kel, Drake & Josh and iCarly. He got his start here as the head writer before eventually becoming the showrunner.
The series was basically a family-friendly SNL, and like that show featured many musical guests, including Usher, A Tribe Called Quest, the Spice Girls, Destiny’s Child, Britney Spears and N*Sync.
The original cast from the first season included Angelique Bates, Lori Beth Denberg, Katrina Johnson, Kel Mitchell, Alisa Reyes, Josh Server and Kenan Thompson. They were joined and replaced by other young actors and comedians over the show’s six-year run and I’m curious about where the cast of All That went after the show was over, so I decided to find out.
Server was the only cast member of All That who remained on the show for all six seasons. After the show ended he continued to act in Nickelodeon shows like Drake & Josh, Ned’s Declassified School Survival Guide and Sam & Cat. He recently had a recurring role on the Amazon Prime web series Good Girls Revolt, which was a period drama that many people called a female-driven Mad Men, but it only lasted one season. He’s set to make an appearance in the 2019 All That reboot.
Kenan Thompson, who was also well-known for starring in Kenan & Kel and the Mighty Ducks films, went on to star in various films like Barbershop 2: The Next Cut and Fat Albert, but his career received a jet-fueled renaissance when he joined the cast of SNL in 2003, becoming one of the funniest cast members in the show’s history and the longest-lasting, beating record holders Darrell Hammond and Tim Meadows. His work on SNL eventually won him an Emmy.
After All That, Kel Mitchell remained a staple of children’s programming, providing voice roles as main characters in Clifford the Big Red Dog, Motorcity and Wild Grinders. He most recently returned to Nickelodeon as a main character in the series Game Shakers, until it ended in 2019.
Lori Beth Denberg
Lori Beth had a small role in the film Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story (2004) starring Ben Stiller and Vince Vaughn and more recently starred in the film Ham on Rye alongside other former Nickelodeon stars Danny Tamberelli and Aaron Schwartz. It premiered at the Santa Barbara International Film Festival in February 2019 to good reviews. She’s also making an appearance in the 2019 All That reboot along with Josh Server, Kenan Thompson and Kel Mitchell.
A stand-up comedian, Johnson had also hosted an online radio show called Uncensored Radio’s Guilty Pleasures from 2014 to 2015.
Alisa Reyes followed All That with a role in the NBC Saturday morning sitcom One World, which ran for three seasons. She was also the voice of LaCieniga Boulevardez in the Disney Channel series The Proud Family and has guest-starred in NYPD Blue, Boston Public, ER and Six Feet Under.
Rapper and comedian Angelique Bates had a recurring role in the popular Lifetime medical drama Strong Medicine, created by Whoopi Goldberg and lasting six seasons from 2000 to 2006. She also starred in David E. Kelly’s Boston Public, the bizarro Adult Swim series Tim and Eric Awesome Show, Great Job!, and started a podcast called The Evening Showdown, in which she interviews public figures about their careers.
Amanda Bynes followed All That with her equally funny spin-off The Amanda Show and a starring role in the sitcom What I Like About You which aired on The WB from 2002 to 2006 for four seasons. She made her big screen debut starring alongside Paul Giamatti and Frankie Muniz in Big Fat Liar, and went on to star in What a Girl Wants (2003), She’s the Man (2006), Hairspray (2007) and Easy A (2010) but she took an indefinite break from acting due to some very public health problems that were later discovered to be the effects of bipolar disorder. As of 2018, she is healthy and has apologized for her behavior on Twitter.
A childhood favorite of mine was the hilarious Danny Tamberelli. During his run on All That he was also known for his role as Little Pete on the Nickelodeon series The Adventures of Pete and Pete and was the voice of Arnold in The Magic School Bus. Tamberelli later became a bassist and vocalist for the New Jersey rock band Jounce, which has released several albums. He started a podcast in 2013 with Pete and Pete co-star Michael Maronna and was also the voice and inspiration for Jimmy De Santa from the video game Grand Theft Auto V.
Frierson had appeared in Warren Beatty’s Bulworth (1998) and the film Snow Day (2000) and guest starred in an episode of Boston Public. He became a rapper and songwriter who was a member of the group The Circuit going by the name Sha’ Boy Malloy and later went solo.
Beginning in 2008 she appeared in Sesame Street alongside her twin brother Chris Knowings for a total of three episodes.
Rapper Nick Cannon followed All That with his own comedy series The Nick Cannon Show which aired on Nickelodeon’s SNICK block from 2002 to 2003. He followed that with the more successful Nick Cannon Presents: Wild ‘n Out, a sketch comedy series that has aired on both MTV and MTV2 and is still going. He has hosted the NBC competition show America’s Got Talent from 2009 to 2016, he has had a main role as himself on Kevin Hart and Chris Spencer’s hilarious BET reality parody series The Real Husbands of Hollywood (2013-2016), and he currently hosts the singing competition series The Masked Singer on FOX. He’s also to my knowledge the only cast member from All That who got to work with Spike Lee, as the star of the 2015 musical spectacle Chi-Raq.
Mark Saul went back to school after finishing All That and went on to graduate from California State University, Northridge with a BA in screenwriting. He starred in ABC medical drama Grey’s Anatomy as Steve Mostow and regularly writes, creates art, performs in his sketch comedy group Rat Pageant and plays music as part of the band The Flashcards. In addition to a successful career, he married his high school girlfriend, a blogger and editor who works for Lauren Conrad of Laguna Beach fame, and lives in Silver Lake, Los Angeles with her, their two kids and their two cats. Life goals.
Stand-up comedian Gabriel Iglesias was one of the finalists in the fourth season of the NBC reality competition series Last Comic Standing. Despite being disqualified for breaking the rules by using a smuggled blackberry to contact his family and friends, Iglesias went on to become famous, hosting his own stand-up comedy-themed series on Comedy Central Gabriel Iglesias Presents Stand Up Revolution which ran for three seasons, as well as headlining his own Netflix special and starring in Magic Mike and voicing animated characters in Planes, The Nut Job, The Book of Life, Coco, Ferdinand, Smurfs: The Lost Village and UglyDolls.
Big Ear of Corn
Big Ear of Corn lives a quiet and reclusive life outside the spotlight of Hollywood. He is now a social worker in Los Angeles and doesn’t act much anymore, although he does occasionally make appearances at San Diego Comic-Con when the cast of All That has reunions. I personally think he would make a great Batman.