* DawsonCasting: Parodied and lampshaded repeatedly in "Pretty White Kids With Problems". The actors are obviously way too old to be playing teenagers, which they constantly make sure to point out.
-->'''Actor in his mid-30s:''' 15 can be a difficult age. And that's how old I am. 15.
* DuelingShows: With ''SaturdayNightLive''. While the show has its share of fans, boasted a more ethnically diverse cast, and is considered the longest-running FOX sketch show (and ''SNL'''s longest-running rival), ''SaturdayNightLive'' (for all its flaws and dips in quality) crushed this show the same way it crushed its other rival sketch shows in terms of ratings and how many cast members have become popular after leaving the show.
* HeyItsThatGuy and RetroactiveRecognition - Alex Borstein (the voice of Lois Griffin on ''WesternAnimation/FamilyGuy'') was a ''Series/{{MADtv}}'' cast member. In fact, she had a news reporter character on ''[=MADtv=]'' who sounded like Tricia Takanawa and always addressed Diane ([[Creator/NicoleSullivan Lawyer-Trabajo]], not Simmons) in her reports, even asking where Diane was in a news sketch after Creator/NicoleSullivan had left.
** PhilLaMarr also falls under this. Before he did voice acting in shows like ''WesternAnimation/SamuraiJack'' (as the title character) and ''WesternAnimation/{{Futurama}}'' (as Jamaican accountant Hermes Conrad), he was a cast member on ''[=MADtv=]'' (though before ''[=MADtv=]'', he had a small, but memorable role in ''Film/PulpFiction'' [which explains why in the show's parody called "Gump Fiction," [[ActorAllusion LaMarr screamed]], [[IJustShotMarvinInTheFace "Not again!"]])
** Indeed, several of ''[=MADtv=]'''s actors have found successful careers in voice acting (with the exception of Taran Killam[[note]]who is currently on ''Saturday Night Live''[[/note]], Jeff Richards[[note]]who was on ''SNL'', then left for different projects[[/note]], Will Sasso[[note]]whose recent credit was as Curly Howard on the movie adaptation of ''The Three Stooges''[[/note]], Matt Braunger, and Bobby Lee[[note]]both of whom have mostly been doing stand-up since ''Series/{{MADtv}}'' ended[[/note]]). Unfortunately, many of the later performers (like Crista Flanagan and Nicole Parker) have found themselves stuck in the SeltzerAndFriedberg movies or on failed and/or short-lived ComedyCentral shows (with ''Key & Peele'' hopefully being the exception to the rule, as it was praised for being the best sketch show on the network since ''Series/ChappellesShow'').
** Mo Collins[[note]]on ''MADtv'' from season four to season nine. Her recurring characters include Stuart's mom, Doreen, gross, confused middle-aged woman Lorraine, and Trina, an unlucky woman who almost marries her long-lost brother. Her celebrity impressions include Catherine Zeta-Jones, Mary Hart, Mary Tyler Moore, Madonna, Cher, Barbara Bush, Shakira, Pamela Anderson-Lee, and Jenny Jones, and most of her sketches had her paired up with Michael [=McDonald=][[/note]] is currently RecurringCharacter Joan Callamezzo on ''ParksAndRecreation''. Joan has a somewhat antagonistic relationship with the main character Leslie Knope, played by Creator/AmyPoehler. So essentially, a ''[=MADtv=]'' alum is playing the rival of an ''[=SNL=]'' alum (how apt).
** Ike Barinholtz (who was on the show from season eight to season 12; known for his impressions of Dane Cook, Nick Nolte, and Kevin Federline, and often paired up with Josh Meyers in sketches) was on this show before he was on ''Series/TheMindyProject''. He left after season 12 due to disputes with the executive producers and overall boredom with the show.
* KeepCirculatingTheTapes: For a time, the only [=DVD=]s ''MADtv'' had out were the complete season one set and a compilation special called ''The Best of Seasons 8, 9, and 10''. Despite a preview for the second season DVD, Warner Bros. decided not to release any more [=DVD=]s for the show due to low sales. ShoutFactory picked up the slack and released seasons two, three, and four on DVD, but then stopped for the same reason Warner Bros. did. And don't bother looking for it on television, since ComedyCentral stopped airing the show in 2010 (it didn't even air the last couple of seasons [12 to 14], though Canada's Comedy Network aired season 12 before pulling the show) and no other channel has aired it since [[note]]in contrast, ''SaturdayNightLive'' is now airing on VH1 and VH1 Classic, along with some half-hour reruns of current season episodes on NBC, a collection of memorable sketches on NBC's webpage and on Yahoo Screen, and a memorable stint on Netflix and [=Xfinity=] On-Demand's Streampix[[/note]]. YouTube seems to be the only place anyone can find sketches, and iTunes store only has full episodes of the last two seasons available.
* NoExportForYou: Narrowly averted with the first run. {{FOX}} didn't plan to air the show in {{Seattle}} because the ''local'' SketchComedy show ''AlmostLive'' (the show that made ''BillNyeTheScienceGuy'' popular before he had his own educational series on PBS) was well-established and wildly popular at the time.
* SiblingRivalry: Josh Meyers (a cast member on ''[=MADtv=]'' for the show's eighth and ninth seasons) is the younger brother of [[SaturdayNightLive Weekend Update]] anchor SethMeyers in RealLife, making SethMeyers the only cast member to have a sibling on a rival sketch show. Made evident when Seth Meyers appeared on Weekend Update to talk to his dad and tells him to turn off ''Series/{{MADtv}}''.
* WhatCouldHaveBeen - SethMacFarlane (the man behind ''Family Guy'', ''[[{{WesternAnimation/AmericanDad}} American Dad!]]'', and ''TheClevelandShow'') was originally contracted to do cartoon shorts for this show, but backed out in favor of creating his own TV series for FOX. Had [=MacFarlane=] taken the offer, he would have created ''Family Guy'' for ''Series/{{MADtv}}'' before spinning it off into its own show, much like Matt Groening did with ''TheSimpsons'' on ''The Tracy Ullman Show''.
** Keegan-Michael Key and Jordan Peele were originally hired with the intention of FOX picking only one of them to be in the next season's cast, but the two had such great chemistry both separately and together that FOX decided to pick them both.
** Stephnie Weir (the ''Series/{{MADtv}}'' cast member known for recurring character Dot[[note]]a mentally unstable girl who's parents abuse her because she's not smart like her sister[[/note]] and her impression of Anna Nicole Smith) originally auditioned to be a ''SaturdayNightLive'' cast member. She was passed up on ''SNL'' in favor of Rachel Dratch.
*** Jordan Peele also auditioned to be on ''Saturday Night Live'' during the hiatus brought on by the 2007-2008 Writers' Guild strike when Lorne Michaels used the time off to find a cast member who could play Barack Obama. Peele and another black male cast member (Donald Glover) were passed up in favor of Fred Armisen (to much controversy) until September 2012, when Jay Pharoah was chosen. The joke's on ''SNL'' as [[HilariousInHindsight Jordan Peele is now Barack Obama]] on Comedy Central's ''KeyAndPeele''.