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10 ironic comedy remakes

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6. “Fat Albert” (2004)

The great Bill Cosby based the original cartoon series on his friends from his childhood, whom he talked about often in his stand-up comedy, and it was always chock full of music and fun, and if you weren’t careful, you’d always learn something before it was done. Hey, hey, hey, you’re gonna have a good time. However, when the elder and a bit farther ‘out there’ Cosby revisited the characters for a 2004 movie adaptation, he got extremely self-referential – having the cartoon burst out of the television and run around in the modern world not as fully-formed human beings, but as cartoons who didn’t exist outside of the parameters of the show. Dumb Donald didn’t have a face under his goofy purple hat-mask, for example. They even meet Cosby himself, and all his old real-life friends – even visiting the grave of the real Fat Albert. To say it was confused in tone would be an understatement, but Kenan Thompson is relentlessly likeable anyway.


7. “Josie and the Pussycats” (2001)

Somehow, Archie Comics have adapted to the times and are still supermarket-line impulse buys, and this all-girl rock band began as a part of Dan DeCarlo’s Riverdale universe, becoming a short-lived cartoon in 1970. The 2001 update gave us Rachael Leigh Cook, Rosario Dawson and Tara Reid in the lead rocker roles and became a full-on satire of the music industry at the time and showbiz in general, complete with a lame boy band populated by Seth Green, Breckin Meyer and Donald Faison, not to mention Parker Posey as a hilariously overboard manager.


8. “Land of the Lost” (2009)

Will Ferrell’s big-budget 2009 reinvention of the extremely cheesily-animated 1974 Sid & Marty Krofft science fiction kids’ series had its moments, although it didn’t fare too well at the box office. The dinosaurs and other creatures in the mysterious alternate-reality world were impressive, and rarely are those kinds of effects employed in the service of comedy, and given the ‘flop’ status, it’s not likely they will be again anytime soon. The Kroffts were producers on this version, too, but at times the film seemed openly hostile towards itself – or perhaps that was just Ferrell’s pompous Rick Marshall and his over-the-top vitriol towards the little primate guy Cha-Ka.


9. “The Dukes of Hazzard” (2005)

One might argue that this one isn’t entirely ironic, since the 2005 film actually seemed to take itself a little more seriously – or at least a little more realistically – than the original early 1980s action-comedy about well-meaning outlaw rednecks jumping creeks in their Dodge Charger while banjos constantly play. Turning James Best’s bumbling madman Sheriff Rosco P. Coltrane into an M.C. Gainey hardass and Sorrell Booke’s corpulent
blowhard Boss Hogg into the slicker, smoother Burt Reynolds are examples of that. However, Willie Nelson as Uncle Jesse, the writing-off of the Confederate flag on the roof of the General Lee to the weirdness of Cooter (David Koechner), and someone actually mocking Hogg for wearing white after Labor Day make it firmly ironical in its ironicality, y’all.


10. “The Adventures of Rocky and Bullwinkle” (2000)

This one pretty much mandated an ironic take, as the beloved classic cartoon was built on ingenious self-mocking, fourth-wall-breaking antics already before the attempt to spin a little Who Framed Roger Rabbit? magic onto it came to pass in 2000. The result is a mixed bag, featuring Robert De Niro poking fun at his Taxi Driver lines as Fearless Leader, Jason Alexander as Boris and Rene Russo as Natasha, while Moose and Squirrel remained their own animated selves in the real world. It’s certainly a weird one – but Rocket J. Squirrel and Bullwinkle J. Moose always were a little off-kilter.

What is your favorite comedy remake? Tell us in the comments below or on Facebook and Twitter.

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The Best Of The Last

Portlandia Goes Out With A Bang

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The end is near. In mere days Portlandia wraps up its final season, and oh what a season it’s been. Lucky for you, you can watch the entire season right now right here and on the IFC app, including this free episode courtesy of Subaru.

But now, let’s take a moment to look back at some of the new classics Fred and Carrie have so thoughtfully bestowed upon us. (We’ll be looking back through tear-blurred eyes, but you do you.)

Couples Dinner

It’s not that being single sucks, it’s that you suck if you’re single.

Cancel it!

A sketch for anyone who has cancelled more appointments than they’ve kept. Which is everyone.

Forgotten America

This one’s a “Serial” killer…everything both right and wrong about true crime podcasts.

Wedding Planners

The only bad wedding is a boring wedding.

Disaster Hut

It’s only the end of the world if your doomsday kit doesn’t include rosé.

Catch up on Portlandia’s final episodes on demand and at IFC.com

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Your Portlandia Personality Test

The New Portlandia Webseries Is Going Your Way

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Carrie and Fred understand that although we have so much in common, we’re each so beautifully unique and different. To help us navigate those differences, Portlandia has found an easy and honest way to embrace our special selves in the form of a progressive new traffic system: a specific lane for every kind of driver. It’s all in honor of the show’s 8th and final season, and it’s all presented by Subaru.

Ready to find out who you really are? Match your personality to a lane and hop on the expressway to self-understanding.

Lane 10: Trucks Piled With Junk

Your junk is falling out of your trunk. Shake a tail light, people — this lane is for you.

Lane 33: Twins

You’re like a Gemini, but waaaay more pedestrian. Maybe you and a friend just wear the same outfits a lot. Who cares, it’s just twinning enough to make you feel special.

Lane 27: Broken Windows

Bad luck follows you around and everyone knows it. Your proverbial seat is always damp from proverbial rain. Is this the universe telling you to swallow your pride? Yes.

Lane 69: Filthy Cars

You’re all about convenience. Getting your car washed while you drive is a no-brainer.

Lane 43: Newly Divorced Singles

It’s been a while since you’ve driven alone, and you don’t know the rules of the road anymore. What’s too fast? What’s too slow? Are you sending the right signals? Don’t worry, the breakdown lane is nearby if you need it.

Still can’t find a lane to match your personality? Check out all the videos here. And see the final season of Portlandia this spring on IFC.

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Last-Minute Holiday Gift Guide

Hits from the '80s are on repeat all Christmas Eve and Day on IFC.

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GIFs via Giphy, Photos via The Everett Collection

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