Archive for the ‘Comedy’ Category

Words To Live By

January 25, 2010

Feels like just yesterday I was writing about my excitement for a new era in Late Night, but maybe Bobby Frost was right. Nonetheless, these past seven months have only reaffirmed what a genuine, intelligent, inspirational CLASS ACT the man is. I hope to see you again in September?

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Only Call It If You Need Me

November 20, 2009

I’m 100% positive that Jason Segel and I could be best buds. He’s one of my favorite Hollywood celebs, because he seems like a regular dude. Freaks & Geeks and Undeclared put him on my radar back in the day, with Forgetting Sarah Marshall and How I Met Your Mother eventually solidifying long-term trust in the actor.

As many know, I’m kind of a The Swell Season fanboy as well. Last night at the Wiltern in Los Angeles, a perfect storm emerged as the two joined forces to perform a new Jason Segel original inspired by advice from Marketa. Glen Hansard (another down-to-earth guy) has voiced his admiration for Freaks & Geeks on more than one occasion, so the collaboration makes perfect sense:

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As much as I would have loved to experience this moment firsthand, I’m still much happier with the show I was attending that night instead. Bruce literally played for over 3 hours without taking any breaks. Eight of those songs were Born to Run in its entirety. Plus, this happened.

Follow Friday

August 21, 2009

Rob Huebel is arguably as funny as his “Human Giant” buddy Aziz Ansari, and I value his latest work for a variety of reasons (other than the obvious fact that it is a hilarious video):

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First and foremost, Rob’s prank immediately reminded me of one of my favorite high school memories involving my close friend Matt sketchily tailing two bike-riding middle schoolers on their way to the neighborhood pool in his old Le Sabre.  The youngsters’ nervous pace gradually picked up the longer we creeped alongside them and only intensified after Matt’s dramatic hitting of the brakes to stare as they crossed the street. Upon ending the pursuit, I can’t ever remember laughing longer or harder. There’s nothing like an unexpected prompt to aid in reminiscing the glory days.

I also appreciate a solid mocking of Twitter trendiness. I’d be curious to see how many subscribers Rob picks up as a result of this stunt. I understand how the service can be a useful tool, but reading Facebook updates can already be too much for one day. I just have no desire to tell the world about the intimacies of my day, which I realize might be ironic reading from a latest blog post.

Last but not least, the video introduced me to MakingOf.com. Co-founded by the delightful Natalie Portman, the website provides a closer inside look into the process of creating entertainment:

We started MakingOf because we realized that so much of what goes into entertainment creation is unavailable to the people who love and consume it the most. We wanted to give fans a way to experience that creation and learn from the insiders. It is your all-access pass to learn from and interact with actors, directors, producers, writers, and more.  Film school for everyone!

Considering my interest in the filmmaking process, MakingOf sounds like a good site to know.  I haven’t had a chance to dig in yet, but I certainly owe Mr. Huebel some thanks for brightening up my otherwise boring Friday afternoon.

Michael & Michael Do Have Issues

July 25, 2009

In case you missed it, Michael & Michael Have Issues premiered July 15th on Comedy Central.  Given my recent travels, I was unable to catch either of the first two shows live, but I’ve caught up to speed courtesy of the worldwide web.

To preface, I’ve loved Showalter and Black for quite some time. The State and Stella were brilliant.  Wet Hot American Summer and The Baxter are personal favorites.  I’ve seen both comedians perform stand-up live. Plus, I’ve always enjoyed Black’s I Love the 80’s commentary and Showalter’s mock interview webisodes:

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That being said, I have issues with how disappointing Michael & Michael Have Issues has been after the first two weeks. I’m fairly confident the duo will be adding yet another cancelled series to their repertoire shortly. It pains me to see such talent go to waste. The absurdist delivery that garnered a cult following is now merely a shell of their earlier work, which can be most likely attributed to the show’s desire to appeal to a broader mainstream audience.

I waited patiently, desperately wanting to laugh; unfortunately thus far, I’ve only done so during the “Quiet Weatherman” sketch:

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For the time being, Michael & Michael airs on Wednesday nights at 10:30 pm ET, but I’d much rather be watching a show in the vein of The Michael Showalter Showalter. I hope the network eventually allows the pair to go full-fledged with their ludicrous style before it’s too late.

Blowing My Mind

June 27, 2009

Joining the ranks of the uncomfortable waking up with the Kingsubservient chicken, and FLAME promotions, Burger King has done it again with the “It’ll Blow Your Mind” campaign for the Super Seven Incher that promises to fill your deepest desires:

Fill Your Desire

Thanks for the tip, C.B. (that's what she said?)

I applaud the ridiculous implementation of absurdism and blatant sexual innuedo for fast food promotions (even if some critics don’t). For a thorough background on the new marketing plan, I recommend the 2004 write-up of Burger King’s chief marketing officer’s Harvard Business School speech on giving the company an image makeover:

Trying to discern where they fit in the fast food ecosystem, Burger King hired a cultural anthropologist to map the way. The findings were interesting, if not completely unsurprising. McDonalds is perceived as childhood’s oasis, ripe with playful innocence. Wendy’s is the realm of the adult, signifying quality, peace, and being cared for. So, the only place left for Burger King was surly adolescence.

Burger King CMO Russ Klein claimed that four principles were integral to their rebranding process:

  1. Relevance: How the brand fits into the consumer’s life.
  2. Differentiation: The brand’s point of difference.
  3. Esteem: How well the brand is regarded.
  4. Knowledge: An intimate consumer understanding of the brand.

I’d call the rebranding a success by those standards, but are Burger King executives happy with the campaign’s ROI? Effie Awards and self-aware ads are great, but I’d still prefer a Big Bacon Classic over a Whopper any day.

Maybe this metaphorical demographic tug-of-war is just another exemplification of my ongoing struggle with adulthood…

Something I’ve Been Meaning to Get Off My Chest

May 11, 2009

Two things.  First off, Aziz Ansari is funny.  I wish I could say the same about the rest of the Parks and Recreation cast.  I thought he killed this interview and I’m impressed that he made it possible to enjoy watching over 8 minutes of Jimmy Kimmel’s late night show:

As his momentum continues to carry through the rest of the year, I wouldn’t be surprised if he quickly becomes another household name.  Here are three more reasons to check him out if you haven’t done so already:

  1. His blog is fun to catch up on during slower days in front of the computer, regardless of the frequent self-promotions
  2. He’s the funniest member of the TV show that originally put him and his buddies on the comedic map
  3. His cameo in Observe & Report was easily one of the best scenes from the movie (as much as I also enjoy Anna Faris)

Secondly, Aziz is in good company, considering the last person to make me want to watch Kimmel is now my favorite comedian:

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Please let The Hangover meet its potential.  I feel that it will, as long as the Tyson “jokes” are kept to a minimum.  This needs to happen because Zach deserves his big break, especially now that Will Ferrell has simultaneously decided to stop being funny.

CMT Cribs

April 27, 2009

The 0:28 second mark makes me laugh.  I’m not sure how the producers forgot to edit me out after our “YOU’RE IN THE SHOT” moment together:

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Never in a million years would I have ever anticipated being in the house of a country music star during his big Cribs moment, let alone make a cameo in the final edit.  I’m such a sell out.

FUN FACT: I got to be the guy that set up the 4-wheelers in the front of the house.  Jason was busy getting ready and all of the guys in the CMT crew were reluctant to maneuver his toys out of the garage.  Receiving meticulous supervision from the producer, I felt like Austin trying to get the angle just right for the shot.  Who knew that my time at the family lake house would ever come in handy for this moderately “professional” situation…

UPDATE: If the embedded video above stops streaming, you can still watch the full episode here.  The part being discussed can be found at the 14:50 mark.

More from Tairy Greene

April 23, 2009

After some further investigation, I realized that Tairy Greene has been featured in multiple Adult Swim pieces.  Although “The Snuggler” might be hard to top, I found his acting seminars for children to be very insightful and thought-provoking (as well as a much needed boost during a less than ideal work week):

YOUR BODY’S LANGUAGE:

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THE THESPIAN’S MONIKER:

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THE ACTOR’S MEDICINE:

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Do You Like Fish Sticks?

April 10, 2009

I’m still not fully convinced that Christina didn’t find this clip remotely comical, even after she made it clear that she felt it was painfully unfunny.

I think the circumstance that brought about its discovery holds the key to explaining why I find it hilarious.  As many of you know, the company I work for powers KanyeUniverseCity.com and the popular blog that lives there.  Mid-week, we discovered a previously ignored email address where fans could submit blog suggestions and pictures.  While no one at Echo apparently knew the address existed, hundreds of overzealous Kanye fans did.  After sifting through hundreds of forgotten “Stronger” shades submissions, I stumbled across this gem:

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The fact that this submitter had full intentions of being featured on a blog that predominantly focuses on centerfold girls, over-priced furniture, and fashion design easily made my week.  It is now my goal to make sure “Buy Brants!” has the debut it rightfully deserves.

R.I.P. Lucky

March 28, 2009

Losing a pet can certainly be tough.  Just ask Marley’s family.  I’m not sure how long the following clip has been around, but the fact that Katie Couric suggests the video to Joe Biden at the end of a pre-VP nomination interview makes me feel like I’m late to this particular YouTube party.  As creepy as it may sound, Maya’s eulogy actually makes me look forward to becoming a father and encountering that first devastating tiolet bowl funeral experience:

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I particularly enjoyed the editor’s sensible decision to dramatize the introduction with bagpipes and a reminder that Lucky lived from 2006 to 2006.  I have every intention of becoming that shameful dad constantly trying to “capture the moment” on film in an attempt to carry out my directorial pipe dreams.