DID YOU READ

SNL Sketch Showdown: Wayne’s World vs. Bill Brasky

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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.

Mainstream vs. Cult Status

This one is an interesting match-up of sketches that couldn’t be more different. One is a long-running character-based effort that became a pop culture phenomenon and managed to get two movies made out of it and the other is an over-the-top festival of hilariously boisterous obnoxiousness. It seems a bit like an open and shut case, right?

Sketch 1: Wayne’s World

Now, in 2013, it’s easy to dismiss Mike Myers and Dana Carvey’s old characters of Wayne Campbell and Garth Algar as expired relics of the late 80s and early 90s – something as beaten into the ground as Austin Powers or Shrek. It became so ubiquitous that all the “schwings” and the “party ons” and the “butt monkeys” feel dated and old hat these days. But schticks aside, what makes “Wayne’s World” great is its versatility. There was a lot of room within the core concept of two juvenile teenage rock fans hosting a public access show in their basement to turn it into whatever it needed to be to tweak with the news of the day. Whether it was an idiotic take on simple Oscar picks, Bruce Willis playing the coolest guy in school introducing new cool words for the year, or a full-on fantasy dream sequence where Wayne winds up in Madonna’s “Justify My Love” video complete with actual Madonna, you could really do anything with these guys. They connected to audiences in part because there was only a thin veneer of unreality separating most viewers from being Wayne Campbell themselves. He was a guy you could see hanging out with, in a basement you’ve probably been in before. Wayne was more character than caricature, a long-standing creation of Myers’ that pre-dated “SNL,” and that gave him the range and depth to last for a long time in the American consciousness. Plus, they got Aerosmith on the show to discuss the collapse of the Soviet Union while Roadie Tom Hanks blurted into microphones about sibilance. You know, there’s never been a blueprint for the dictatorship of the proletariat, so there’s bound to be some mistakes. However, if you study history, you’ll see that, since the rise of the nation-state, socialism has been an historical inevitability, dude.

Sketch 2: Bill Brasky

Don’t count those Bill Brasky Buddies out right away. It’s so weird that it feels like it could have been a “Kids in the Hall” piece – which makes sense, what with Mark McKinney being there from the get go. They may have only had a total of five sketches , and it may have been repeating the same theme of a group of loud, drunk, horrible businessmen vociferously extolling the virtues of their cult hero son of a bitch’s exploits while occasionally blurting out awkward personal secrets, but it was a perfect satire of macho asshole-deification culture and a treasure trove of insane one-liners. “Brasky would use his own thigh as an anvil.” “He killed Wolfman Jack with a trident.” “He had dandruff the size of mice.” “His poop is considered currency in Argentina.” “He once ate the Bible while waterskiing.” The absurdity of ridiculous things like this coming out of the screaming, slurring fake-toothed faces of McKinney, Will Ferrell, Alec Baldwin, John Goodman and David Koechner, mixed in with confessions like “I don’t have a penis!” and “I’m a convicted sex offender!” – well, it all makes the Brasky sketches awkwardly mesmerizing. Something about Will Ferrell being really loud is funny more often than not. Improvisational non-sequiturs are comedy gold, and it feels like a sketch tailor-made for Goodman, playing a broken drunkard who could easily be some distant relation to Walter Sobchak.

And the Winner Is…

All in all, while Brasky is a great show closer, creating that last-call “get out there and go crazy” weirdness that thrives when nearing the 1:00 hour, when it comes down to it, you have to hand it to “Wayne’s World,” a catchphrase factory which left an indelible mark on Saturday Night Live history. It’s pail, it’s totally bucket to see the Bill Brasky Buddies go, but those guys are pretty sphinctitious when you get down to it. They dabble in the ways of sphinctery. One might say they’re off the sphinctometer. We have seen the sphincter, and it is Bill Brasky.

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

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Bro and Tell

BFFs And Night Court For Sports

Bromance and Comeuppance On Two New Comedy Crib Series

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“Silicon Valley meets Girls meets black male educators with lots of unrealized potential.”

That’s how Carl Foreman Jr. and Anthony Gaskins categorize their new series Frank and Lamar which joins Joe Schiappa’s Sport Court in the latest wave of new series available now on IFC’s Comedy Crib. To better acquaint you with the newbies, we went right to the creators for their candid POVs. And they did not disappoint. Here are snippets of their interviews:

Frank and Lamar

via GIPHY

IFC: How would you describe Frank and Lamar to a fancy network executive you met in an elevator?
Carl: Best bros from college live and work together teaching at a fancy Manhattan private school, valiantly trying to transition into a more mature phase of personal and professional life while clinging to their boyish ways.

IFC: And to a friend of a friend you met in a bar?
Carl: The same way, slightly less coherent.

Anthony: I’d probably speak about it with much louder volume, due to the bar which would probably be playing the new Kendrick Lamar album. I might also include additional jokes about Carl, or unrelated political tangents.

Carl: He really delights in randomly slandering me for no reason. I get him back though. Our rapport on the page, screen, and in real life, comes out of a lot of that back and forth.

IFC: In what way is Frank and Lamar a poignant series for this moment in time?
Carl: It tells a story I feel most people aren’t familiar with, having young black males teach in a very affluent white world, while never making it expressly about that either. Then in tackling their personal lives, we see these three-dimensional guys navigate a pivotal moment in time from a perspective I feel mainstream audiences tend not to see portrayed.

Anthony: I feel like Frank and Lamar continues to push the envelope within the genre by presenting interesting and non stereotypical content about people of color. The fact that this show brought together so many talented creative people, from the cast and crew to the producers, who believe in the project, makes the work that much more intentional and truthful. I also think it’s pretty incredible that we got to employ many of our friends!

Sport Court

Sport Court gavel

IFC: How would you describe Sport Court to a fancy network executive you met in an elevator?
Joe: SPORT COURT follows Judge David Linda, a circuit court judge assigned to handle an ad hoc courtroom put together to prosecute rowdy fan behavior in the basement of the Hartford Ultradome. Think an updated Night Court.

IFC: How would you describe Sport Court to drunk friend of a friend you met in a bar?
Joe: Remember when you put those firecrackers down that guy’s pants at the baseball game? It’s about a judge who works in a court in the stadium that puts you in jail right then and there. I know, you actually did spend the night in jail, but imagine you went to court right that second and didn’t have to get your brother to take off work from GameStop to take you to your hearing.

IFC: Is there a method to your madness when coming up with sports fan faux pas?
Joe: I just think of the worst things that would ruin a sporting event for everyone. Peeing in the slushy machine in open view of a crowd seemed like a good one.

IFC: Honestly now, how many of the fan transgressions are things you’ve done or thought about doing?
Joe: I’ve thought about ripping out a whole row of chairs at a theater or stadium, so I would have my own private space. I like to think of that really whenever I have to sit crammed next to lots of people. Imagine the leg room!

Check out the full seasons of Frank and Lamar and Sport Court now on IFC’s Comedy Crib.

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Millennial Wisdom

Charles Speaks For Us All

Get to know Charles, the social media whiz of Brockmire.

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He may be an unlikely radio producer Brockmire, but Charles is #1 when it comes to delivering quips that tie a nice little bow on the absurdity of any given situation.

Charles also perfectly captures the jaded outlook of Millennials. Or at least Millennials as mythologized by marketers and news idiots. You know who you are.

Played superbly by Tyrel Jackson Williams, Charles’s quippy nuggets target just about any subject matter, from entry-level jobs in social media (“I plan on getting some experience here, then moving to New York to finally start my life.”) to the ramifications of fictional celebrity hookups (“Drake and Taylor Swift are dating! Albums y’all!”). But where he really nails the whole Millennial POV thing is when he comments on America’s second favorite past-time after type II diabetes: baseball.

Here are a few pearls.

On Baseball’s Lasting Cultural Relevance

“Baseball’s one of those old-timey things you don’t need anymore. Like cursive. Or email.”

On The Dramatic Value Of Double-Headers

“The only thing dumber than playing two boring-ass baseball games in one day is putting a two-hour delay between the boring-ass games.”

On Sartorial Tradition

“Is dressing badly just a thing for baseball, because that would explain his jacket.”

On Baseball, In A Nutshell

“Baseball is a f-cked up sport, and I want you to know it.”


Learn more about Charles in the behind-the-scenes video below.

And if you were born before the late ’80s and want to know what the kids think about Baseball, watch Brockmire Wednesdays at 10P on IFC.

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Crown Jules

Amanda Peet FTW on Brockmire

Amanda Peet brings it on Brockmire Wednesday at 10P on IFC.

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On Brockmire, Jules is the unexpected yin to Jim Brockmire’s yang. Which is saying a lot, because Brockmire’s yang is way out there. Played by Amanda Peet, Jules is hard-drinking, truth-spewing, baseball-loving…everything Brockmire is, and perhaps what he never expected to encounter in another human.

“We’re the same level of functional alcoholic.”


But Jules takes that commonality and transforms it into something special: a new beginning. A new beginning for failing minor league baseball team “The Frackers”, who suddenly about-face into a winning streak; and a new beginning for Brockmire, whose life gets a jumpstart when Jules lures him back to baseball. As for herself, her unexpected connection with Brockmire gives her own life a surprising and much needed goose.

“You’re a Goddamn Disaster and you’re starting To look good to me.”

This palpable dynamic adds depth and complexity to the narrative and pushes the series far beyond expected comedy. See for yourself in this behind-the-scenes video (and brace yourself for a unforgettable description of Brockmire’s genitals)…

Want more about Amanda Peet? She’s all over the place, and has even penned a recent self-reflective piece in the New York Times.

And of course you can watch the Jim-Jules relationship hysterically unfold in new episodes of Brockmire, every Wednesday at 10PM on IFC.

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