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Episode 5: Airdate: Tuesday November 21th, 1989

The Sketches

Recurring Characters

The Geralds

Headcrusher aka Mr. Tyzik  (Mark)

Headcrusher aka Mr. Tyzik (Mark)

Episode five and the return of the Headcrusher!

First, the Indian Drum and a short and sweet little cold open with Mark and Kevin. The neat little thing to notice with this sketch (aside from the intense look Mark has throughout the entire thing that no other Kid can pull off, except maybe Scott when he’s playing Idiot Boy) is that just before he’s about to get hit at the end, you see him almost break and the smallest smile creep onto his face. I can’t imagine it’s easy to get bonked on the head with stuff without cracking but I enjoy pointing these things out.

The Geralds is an interesting sketch. I absolutely adore it like most Bruce/Mark sketches. Looking at it as an adult in the times we live in, I do wonder how other people feel about it. Does it offend people? Does it encourage using alcohol to take advantage of someone? There was a time when I would say you were thinking too hard and had nothing better to do if you stopped to over analyze, now though I think it can be beneficial to stop laughing, take a step back and examine what you’re laughing at. I’m not saying don’t laugh at it, I encourage it! If nothing else it’s a unique idea and maybe you could get something out of two white guys bartering on behalf of two teenagers. I’m not sure I care to really put the effort into saying “what if they meant this” (sometimes the author writes blue curtains because they just like blue) but I would be interested to hear theories.

There’s also this.

These comedians are not afraid (remember this show was in the almost 90s people)

Back to the funny. The Head Crusher makes his return in two little sketches and according to different sites I came across this seems to be the sketch that most people remember the character for. Given the avenue Mark takes in the later seasons and the live shows with Mr. Tyzik becoming an even more recluse, social inept man who hates everyone, it’s interesting to see the beginning as almost the opposite. In the second sketch he helps someone and in the first he takes the time to not squish the head of Kevin’s character because he feels sorry for him. He may hate almost everyone but there are lots of people out there that would identify with his dislike of jocks and overly confident, annoying people!

There are so many Head Crusher quotable lines! The biggest (and best in my opinion) of course being:

“Like sheep to the moon!”

Explore Scott, I won’t get into detail, it’s a sketch and cute but I’m not a big fan. An interesting behind-the-scenes note though from TV.com:

HBO was originally not going to allow the “Explore Scott” sketch, until producers brought it to their attention that they show naked women on the network all the time, and would protest their nudity stance if they didn’t allow male nudity. The sketch was quickly allowed.

We need more producers like that and to be fair, you don’t see anything during the whole sketch; it’s still PG except for maybe the one long shot at the beginning when you see a bit of bum.

Good Grandpa, a full cast piece is brilliant and kind of creepy but shows what Kids in the Hall is all about. Take something familiar and warp it just enough to make you uncomfortable but still keep it funny. It was originally a hold over from Bruce’s days as a writer with Mark at Saturday Night Live. The writing staff there didn’t like the idea and repeatedly rejected it. Their loss. If I’m not mistaken that is the only time we see that particular border collie in the show, future dogs will be played by a parson terrier mix or for one sketch, Bruce’s actual dog.

I admire the cast’s ability to play the characters they do. Kevin does a convincing if older, teenage/20s girl, Scott is in a comfortable role as the father, Mark plays the mother well (as he will with Gavin’s mother), Bruce plays a convincing creepy old man and Dave shows that not only does he look really young in this first season but he can play a believable kid. The best part of the sketch is I know families like this. Yes, it’s exaggerated for comedy, but I’ve had dinner at homes where the family is this strangely connected.

Also, I really wish parents would be that genuinely happy when their son brings home a “C with promise.”

Lastly, the Elvis sketch, that features not only a live action version of the Charlie Brown dance complete with striped shirts and weird moments but also some spoken word music/poetry from Bruce. If you like this and have the chance to listen to Shame-Based Man (I will continue to plug this, the whole thing is on Youtube) there are more like it there and Drunk Baby Project (his second album). Kevin does a great Elvis impersonation and I giggle at the thought of worried that I’m handing over my rent cheque to an Elvis impersonator. I love that idea! Just imagine your landlord, if you have one or if not that your boss, is a famous person and you have to worry about dealing with impersonators of your boss. Makes you think.

This episode is beginning to push the comedy train along and it’s only five episodes in! As quite a few of you have commented, either here on the blog or to me directly, quite a few of the main characters have already been introduced. We still have to wait for Gavin, the Chicken Lady, and Sir Simon & Hecubus but there’s already been a number of big players and memorable moments brought into the world.

Who are you waiting to be introduced? Did you find the helpful behavior of Mr. Tyzik believable? Leave a comment and tell me what you think of episode five.

Every Thursday is now #KITHursday – put on by the wonderful @rmiriam on twitter.


Watch on youtube? Please purchase the boxset when you are able. (amazon.com/amazon.ca/amazon.co.uk [NTSC])