Carol Burnett 50th Anniversary Show Live Stream: How to Watch Special Online

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Carol Burnett is a comedienne, singer, writer and actress, whose career in entertainment has spanned over six decades. She also had a long-running TV variety show called The Carol Burnett Show, which originally aired on the CBS network. So, it makes sense that Burnett’s 50th anniversary special would be broadcast on the same network tonight. Over the years, Burnett has starred as the evil Miss Hannigan in Annie, Dotty Otley in Noises Off, Verla Grubbs on the soap All My Children and Eunice Higgins on Mama’s Family, among many other roles.

Tonight’s special will air from 8 – 10 p.m. on the CBS network and will feature celebrity guests including former cast members from The Carol Burnett Show, Vicki Lawrence and Lyle Waggoner. Additional guests include costume designer Bob Mackie, and many A-list friends and/or fans of Burnett’s. These guests include Jim Carrey, Kristin Chenoweth, Stephen Colbert, Jay Leno, Bill Hader, Jane Lynch, Maya Rudolph, and Martin Short, according to The AV Club. The special has been taped on Stage 33 at CBS Television City in Los Angeles, which is The Carol Burnett Show‘s original soundstage. Leslie Moonves, Chairman and CEO of the CBS Corporation, released the following statement about the anniversary show, “‘The Carol Burnett Show’ was a comedy showcase that was years ahead of its time. If social media existed then, clips from the broadcast would have quickly gone viral. We are very proud of the show’s significant place in CBS’ legacy, as well as in television history, and we look forward to this primetime celebration of incredible talent, led by the incomparable Carol Burnett.”

According to the San Diego Union Tribune, Burnett also had a career in journalism and it was by chance that she ended up in entertainment. Burnett revealed, “I don’t know what would have happened if I’d majored in journalism. It’s a very interesting field, as you know! … So I got into acting class and was terrified! I picked a light scene to do, and said the lines, and the class laughed where they were supposed to. All of a sudden my whole life changed: ‘Wow! This I what I want to do!’ And that would not have happened if UCLA had a journalism department when I got there.” After graduating from UCLA, Burnett moved to New York City and pursued acting.

If you don’t have cable or can’t get to a TV, you can watch CBS online, on your phone or on another streaming device like an Amazon Fire TV or Roku via one of the following cable-free, live-TV streaming services. They cost a monthly fee but all come with a free trial, so you can watch tonight’s show at no cost if you’re in a select market:

CBS All Access: This service lets you watch a live stream of your local CBS channel (most markets included), as well as all of CBS’ on-demand library, for $5.99 per month. It comes with a free 7-day trial, and you can watch on your computer via your browser, or on your phone, tablet or streaming device via the CBS app

FuboTV: CBS (live in at least 20 markets) is included in the “Fubo Premier” channel package, which is $19.99 per month for the first two months and $39.99 per month after that. It comes with a free 7-day trial, and you can watch on your computer via your browser, or on your phone, tablet or streaming device via the FuboTV app

You can sign up for a free trial via the above links, or you can read on for a more thorough how-to guide to streaming tonight’s show live online, with a mobile app, or through your set-top box or other connected device. In all cases, the stream is available for U.S. users only.


Watch Live Online on Desktop or Laptop

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Photo: Cliff Lipson ©2017 CBS Broadcasting, Inc. All Rights Reserved

1. Go here to start your free trial of CBS All Access and set up your account.

2. If it’s time to watch the show, select “Watch Now” on the next screen and start watching. You may be prompted to confirm your location.

3. If you want to watch later, go back to CBS.com and select “Live TV” at the top of the screen. If you’re still logged in to your account, your stream will start right away. If not, Sign In with the email and password you used to create your account. Start watching.


Watch Live on Smartphone or Tablet

1. Go here to start your free trial of CBS All Access and set up your account.

2. Download the CBS App on your Apple, Android or Windows phone or tablet.

3. Launch the app, go to the menu, select “Live TV,” and sign in with your CBS All Access account. Select “Check Availability,” and you’ll be prompted to allow the app to check your location. Accept, and start watching.

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Watch Live on Apple TV

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Photo: Cliff Lipson ©2017 CBS Broadcasting, Inc. All Rights Reserved

1. Go here to start your free trial of CBS All Access and set up your account.

2. Launch the CBS All Access channel on your Apple TV.

(The CBS Access channel automatically loads during software updates. If you don’t see the channel you can update the software on your Apple TV by going to Settings > General > Software Updates > Update Software.)

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3. On the welcome screen, select “CBS All Access Subscriber Sign In.” Follow instructions to activate. Start watching.


Watch Live on Roku

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Photo: Cliff Lipson ©2017 CBS Broadcasting, Inc. All Rights Reserved

1. Go here to start your free trial of CBS All Access and set up your account.

2. Add the CBS All Access channel to your Roku using your Roku remote. Go to the home screen (select “Home”). Select “Streaming Channels” from the menu and navigate to the Roku Channel Store. Find the “Movies & TV” category and select “CBS All Access.” Get to the CBS All Access screen and select “Add channel.”

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3. Launch the channel.

4. On the welcome screen, select “Sign In” and follow instructions to activate.


Watch Live on Android TV

1. Go here to start your free trial of CBS All Access and set up your account.

2. Add the All Access app on your Android TV:

  • a. Go to the home screen by pressing the “home” button on your Android TV remote
  • b. Go to the “Apps” row on the home screen
  • c. Select the “Google Play Store” app
  • d. Select the “Search” icon
  • e. Search for “CBS All Access”
  • f. Select the “CBS All Access” app
  • g. Select “Install”

3. Launch the app.

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4. Using the remote, select “Settings” and then “Sign in / Sign Up.” This will bring up a website and a code. Using a computer or mobile device, go to cbs.com/androidtv and enter that code. Following the ensuing prompt, log in to All Access with your account’s email and password. Once logged in here, you’ll be logged in on your Android TV.


Watch Live on Chromecast

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Photo: Cliff Lipson ©2017 CBS Broadcasting, Inc. All Rights Reserved

1. Go here to start your free trial of CBS All Access and set up your account.

2. Use the following instructions depending on whether you are casting from a computer, iOS device or Android device.

Download video Links

iOS (Apple) or Android Phone or Tablet:

  • a. Download the latest CBS app on your phone or tablet.
  • b. Connect your phone or tablet to the same Wi-Fi network as your Chromecast.
  • c. Open the CBS app on your phone or tablet, touch the cast button (it looks like this), and start streaming.

Desktop or Laptop Computer:

  • a. Install Chrome browser on your computer
  • b. Open Chrome, and install the Google Cast extension
  • c. Connect your computer to the same Wi-Fi network as your Chromecast
  • d. Go to CBS.com, select the cast button (it looks like this), and start streaming.

Watch Live on Fire TV

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Photo: Cliff Lipson ©2017 CBS Broadcasting, Inc. All Rights Reserved

1. Go here to start your free trial of CBS All Access and set up your account.

2. Add the All Access app to your Fire TV with the following instructions:

  • a. Turn on the device
  • b. From the device’s main menu, select “Search”
  • c. Search for “CBS”
  • d. Select “CBS All Access” from Apps & Games in search results
  • e. Download the app
  • f. From the device’s main menu, select “Apps”
  • g. Select “CBS All Access”

3. Once the app is launched, sign in to your All Access account with the following instructions:

  • a. Use the remote to select “Settings” and then “Sign In / Sign Up”. You will be presented with a website and a code.
  • b. Using a web browser on a computer or mobile device, go to cbs.com/firetv and enter that code.
  • c. When prompted, log in to your All Access account using your email and password. When you’re logged in on the website, you’ll be logged in on your Fire TV.

Watch Live on Xbox 360

1. Go here to start your free trial of CBS All Access and set up your account.

2. Add the app to your Xbox 360 as follows:

  • a. Select “Apps” on the homepage
  • b. Select “Search Apps”
  • c. Search for “CBS All Access”
  • d. Select “CBS All Access”
  • e. Select “Download”

3. Launch the app and follow these instructions:

  • a. Use the remote to select “Settings” and then “Sign In / Sign Up”. You will be presented with a website and a code.
  • b. Using a web browser on a computer or mobile device, go to CBS.com/xbox360 and enter that code.
  • c. When prompted, log in to your All Access account with your email and password. When you have logged in on the website, you’ll be logged in on your Xbox 360.

Many comedians and actors cite Carol Burnett as a major inspiration for them, but who was Burnett’s inspiration in the entertainment industry? In an interview with San Diego Union Tribune, Burnett dished on her inspirations, saying, “Lucy (Lucille Ball) was a great friend and she could do no wrong, especially physically, with what she did. But my main influence for comedy was Sid Caesar. I just loved watching his show. There were no VCRs back then and you couldn’t tape it to see how they performed those sketches. When I went to New York, thinking I’d be on Broadway the rest of my life, I wanted to be Ethel Merman or Mary Martin. All that changed when I got on ‘The Gary Moore Show.’ I said: I kind of like this TV thing. Each week is different and I get to be different people on each show.’”

When Burnett began her variety show, she had no idea it would run for a decade. She said that having fun was the focus and also told Variety that, “We didn’t do topical humor that much. We were more character-driven than worried about referring to Nixon or whatever was going on at the time, so it holds up. Funny is funny. You look at the dentist sketch. That’s 45 years old, and I dare anybody to watch that and not get hysterical … Artists need to do what artists do. And CBS, in all of the years the show was on, understood that.” Prior to getting into television, the stage was actually Burnett’s focus, as she explained, “My goal, when I went to New York, was to be on Broadway, but I got sidetracked by this little thing called television, and I realized I liked it even better than doing the same thing eight times a week. It was like summer stock. I could do different characters every week, and that appealed to me. I had the best of times, and I’m so happy I was around then at the age I was then at the time when television was not as nitpicky as it is today.”