dumb starbucks

Pranks for the Memories

Nathan Fielder’s 5 Best Pranks

Nathan Fielder brings his warped humor to Comedy Bang! Bang! Friday starting at 11P on IFC.

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Photo Credit: Abso Lutely Productions

With his series Nathan For You and the viral stunts he’s sprung on unsuspecting people, Nathan Fielder has become the new face of so awkward-they’re-funny pranks. With Nathan set to stop by the Comedy Bang! Bang! couch this week, we thought we’d highlight five of the most brilliant pranks this master of deadpan has ever pulled. He must have gotten really good grades at one of Canada’s top business schools to pull some of these off.

5. Tweet Anarchy

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Abso Lutely Productions

Fielder’s pranks aren’t confined to his show. Having made a name for himself on Comedy Central, he decided a couple of years ago to see what kind of influence he really had on his audience. That’s how he ended up sending out a tweet stating, “Experiment: text your parents ‘got 2 grams for $40’ then right after ‘Sorry ignore that txt. Not for you’ Then tweet pic of their response,” and let the good times roll. And roll they did…

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Nathan For you text

Nathan For you text

Nathan For you text


4. Price Matching

Fielder is a master at coming up with ridiculously ingenious plans, and then convincing small business owners to go along with them. Here, he decides to use Best Buy’s price matching policy against them by offering high-end televisions for $1, then using the price match to gobble up inventory at a bargain basement price. If the plan worked, his mom-and-pop electronics store client could sell the TVs for full value and make a huge profit. The only problem? Fielder needed to keep customers from buying up the $1 TVs for the one day they were available. How did he accomplish this, you may ask? By building a secret room, with only a tiny door, and then putting a live alligator inside of it, to protect the TVs at all cost.


3. Dumb Starbucks

In what is easily his post famous prank, Fielder built an exact replica of a Starbucks franchise, but put the word “dumb” in front of everything, thus avoiding any copyright infringement since his “mock-bucks” could be considered a parody. Following the weaving tapestry of confused lawyers, unsatisfied customers and employees who he almost certainly was sexually harassing, this is Fielder at his very best.


2. Daddy’s Watching

As Fielder explains in this prank, women don’t sign up for dating sites because they are pretty sure they are going to get murdered. That’s where his dating site, “Daddy’s Watching,” comes in. The concept is simple: Hire a creepy guy to stalk their date, and make sure the women are always taken care of. If they ever feel threatened, they simply have to yell out, “Daddy, Daddy come over now, save my life, you made a vow.” So, nothing could ever go wrong there.


1. Gas Station Rebate

When a local gas station hit hard times, Fielder decided to use a rebate to lure customers in. But, considering the station didn’t have a dime to spare, he knew he had to make claiming the rebate a little more challenging. The solution? The customers would have to drop it off in person at the top of a mountain. What he didn’t expect was that some customers would actually be willing to do this. That’s how an overnight scavenger hunt, full of riddles and cathartic campfire conversations, came about. By turning one of his most ridiculous ideas into a heartwarming look at the lengths lonely people will go to connect, this became one of his very best pranks.

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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.