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SNL Sketch Showdown: Wayne’s World vs. The Festrunk Brothers

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Welcome to the “Saturday Night Live” Sketch Showdown. Every weekday, an IFC writer will determine the winner of a matchup between two classic “SNL” sketches. You can check out the full bracket here.

The Dynamic Duos

The latest round of our “SNL” Sketch Showdown features a pair of duo-driven, recurring skits that were a regular staple on the series across several seasons. Both sketches starred a pair of unconventional characters who lived in their own very unique – and very funny – worlds, one full of rock stars and gorgeous “babes,” and the other full of disco and sexy “foxes.”

Actually, now that we look at it that way, they might have more in common than than you expect…

Sketch 1: “Wayne’s World”

Mike Myers and Dana Carvey made their “Saturday Night Live” debut as metalhead slackers Wayne Campbell and Garth Algar during the 1988 season, and the sketch went on to spawn not one but two live-action movies based on the characters’ adventures. Not only did the pair’s fictional public-access television series rock, it actually made DIY television seem cool – and if you’ve seen much public-access programming, you know how impressive of a feat that is. “Wayne’s World” quickly became one of the most popular recurring sketches in the history of the series, with Wayne and Garth hosting everyone from Tom Hanks to Aerosmith in their basement “studio” and coining catchphrases like “Schwing!” “We’re not worthy!” and “Party on!” And by imprinting with songs like Queen’s “Bohemian Rhapsody” and Gary Wright’s “Dream Weaver,” this sketch managed to become just as significant of a pop-culture reference point as the subjects it riffed on.

Sketch 2: “The Festrunk Brothers”

Steve Martin and Dan Akroyd introduced the world to the Festrunk brothers in September 1977, strolling into the sketch with medallions swinging from their necks, chest hair protruding from their shirts, and bulges, well… bulging… from their too-tight pants. The combination of improperly used American slang, horrible accents, and a parade of guest stars playing it straight against these self-described “Wild and Crazy Guys” made this sketch not only a popular recurring element of the series, but a cultural touchstone. While Georg (Martin) and Yortuk (Aykroyd) Festrunk weren’t the most famous roles either actor brought to the series, the “Wild and Crazy Guys” were such a memorable team-up that they were brought out of retirement this season for a special sketch pitting them against this generation’s model: Andy Samberg and Justin Timberlake’s “Dick in a Box” crooners.

The Matchup

Let’s face it: Every “SNL” sketch to feature some variation of inept, party-hopping guys has simply been trying to recreate the success of Martin and Aykroyd’s “Wild and Crazy Guys.” Chris Kattan and Will Ferrell never quite captured that magic in their “Roxbury Guys” sketches despite spinning their rayon-clad, Haddaway-loving brothers into a live-action film. Andy Samberg and Justin Timberlake, however, may have usurped the throne with their slick, musical “Dick in a Box” duo. Still, it’s hard to argue with the success of “Wayne’s World” – the most successful franchise to spin out of “SNL.” With two successful movies, a long list of bands and songs that found their way to the top of the charts thanks to a mention by Wayne or Garth, these friends from Aurora, Illinois, may actually be one of the only duos capable of tearing our attention away from the Festrunk brothers’ antics.

And the Winner is…

“Wayne’s World”

Like Martin and Aykroyd, Myers and Carvey were more than capable of giving us memorable individual characters – but when it comes to team-ups, no pair gelled better than Wayne Campbell and Garth Algar, who consistently made their characters seem so much larger than the series that hosted them.

Did the right sketch win? Tell us in the comments section below or on Facebook and Twitter.

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New Nasty

Whips, Chains and Hand Sanitizer

Turn On The Full Season Of Neurotica At IFC's Comedy Crib

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Jenny Jaffe has a lot going on: She’s writing for Disney’s upcoming Big Hero 6: The Series, developing comedy projects with pals at Devastator Press, and she’s straddling the line between S&M and OCD as the creator and star of the sexyish new series Neurotica, which has just made its debut on IFC’s Comedy Crib. Jenny gave us some extremely intimate insight into what makes Neurotica (safely) sizzle…

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IFC: How would you describe Neurotica to a fancy network executive you met in an elevator?

Jenny: Neurotica is about a plucky Dominatrix with OCD trying to save her small-town dungeon. 

IFC: How would you describe Neurotica to a drunk friend of a friend you met in a bar?

Jenny: Neurotica is about a plucky Dominatrix with OCD trying to save her small-town dungeon. You’re great. We should get coffee sometime. I’m not just saying that. I know other people just say that sometimes but I really feel like we’re going to be friends, you know? Here, what’s your number, I’ll call you so you can have my number! 

IFC: What’s your comedy origin story?

Jenny: Since I was a kid I’ve dealt with severe OCD and anxiety. Comedy has always been one of the ways I’ve dealt with that. I honestly just want to help make people feel happy for a few minutes at a time. 

IFC: What was the genesis of Neurotica?

Jenny: I’m pretty sure it was a title-first situation. I was coming up with ideas to pitch to a production company a million years ago (this isn’t hyperbole; I am VERY old) and just wrote down “Neurotica”; then it just sort of appeared fully formed. “Neurotica? Oh it’s an over-the-top romantic comedy about a Dominatrix with OCD, of course.” And that just happened to hit the buttons of everything I’m fascinated by. 

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IFC: How would you describe Ivy?

Jenny: Ivy is everything I love in a comedy character – she’s tenacious, she’s confident, she’s sweet, she’s a big wonderful weirdo. 

IFC: How would Ivy’s clientele describe her?

Jenny:  Open-minded, caring, excellent aim. 

IFC: Why don’t more small towns have local dungeons?

Jenny: How do you know they don’t? 

IFC: What are the pros and cons of joining a chain mega dungeon?

Jenny: You can use any of their locations but you’ll always forget you have a membership and in a year you’ll be like “jeez why won’t they let me just cancel?” 

IFC: Mouths are gross! Why is that?

Jenny: If you had never seen a mouth before and I was like “it’s a wet flesh cave with sharp parts that lives in your face”, it would sound like Cronenberg-ian body horror. All body parts are horrifying. I’m kind of rooting for the singularity, I’d feel way better if I was just a consciousness in a cloud. 

See the whole season of Neurotica right now on IFC’s Comedy Crib.

The-Craft

The ’90s Are Back

The '90s live again during IFC's weekend marathon.

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Photo Credit: Everett Digital, Columbia Pictures

We know what you’re thinking: “Why on Earth would anyone want to reanimate the decade that gave us Haddaway, Los Del Rio, and Smash Mouth, not to mention Crystal Pepsi?”

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Thoughts like those are normal. After all, we tend to remember lasting psychological trauma more vividly than fleeting joy. But if you dig deep, you’ll rediscover that the ’90s gave us so much to fondly revisit. Consider the four pillars of true ’90s culture.

Boy Bands

We all pretended to hate them, but watch us come alive at a karaoke bar when “I Want It That Way” comes on. Arguably more influential than Brit Pop and Grunge put together, because hello – Justin Timberlake. He’s a legitimate cultural gem.

Man-Child Movies

Adam Sandler is just behind The Simpsons in terms of his influence on humor. Somehow his man-child schtick didn’t get old until the aughts, and his success in that arena ushered in a wave of other man-child movies from fellow ’90s comedians. RIP Chris Farley (and WTF Rob Schneider).

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Teen Angst

In horror, dramas, comedies, and everything in between: Troubled teens! Getting into trouble! Who couldn’t relate to their First World problems, plaid flannels, and lose grasp of the internet?

Mainstream Nihilism

From the Coen Bros to Fincher to Tarantino, filmmakers on the verge of explosive popularity seemed interested in one thing: mind f*cking their audiences by putting characters in situations (and plot lines) beyond anyone’s control.

Feeling better about that walk down memory lane? Good. Enjoy the revival.

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And revisit some important ’90s classics all this weekend during IFC’s ’90s Marathon. Check out the full schedule here.

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Get Physical

DVDs are the new Vinyl

Portlandia Season 7 Now Available On Disc.

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In this crazy digital age, sometimes all we really want is to reach out and touch something. Maybe that’s why so many of us are still gung-ho about owning stuff on DVD. It’s tangible. It’s real. It’s tech from a bygone era that still feels relevant, yet also kitschy and retro. It’s basically vinyl for people born after 1990.

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Inevitably we all have that friend whose love of the disc is so absolutely repellent that he makes the technology less appealing. “The resolution, man. The colors. You can’t get latitude like that on a download.” Go to hell, Tim.

Yes, Tim sucks, and you don’t want to be like Tim, but maybe he’s onto something and DVD is still the future. Here are some benefits that go beyond touch.

It’s Decor and Decorum

With DVDs and a handsome bookshelf you can show off your great taste in film and television without showing off your search history. Good for first dates, dinner parties, family reunions, etc.

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Forget Public Wifi

Warm up that optical drive. No more awkwardly streaming episodes on shady free wifi!

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Inter-not

Internet service goes down. It happens all the time. It could happen right now. Then what? Without a DVD on hand you’ll be forced to make eye contact with your friends and family. Or worse – conversation.

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Self Defense

You can’t throw a download like a ninja star. Think about it.

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If you’d like to experience the benefits DVD ownership yourself, Portlandia Season 7 is now available on DVD and Blue-Ray.