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Episode 10: Airdate: Tuesday January 9, 1990

The Sketches

Recurring Characters

Nobody Likes Us Guys

Nobody Likes Us Guys

Review!

It seems episode nine is a popular episode for TV re-runs and episode ten seems to be popular for Youtube and the Nerdist channel who have three of the sketches from this episode up on their feed with interviews. As always I encourage you to watch the interviews if you’re at all interested in behind the scenes stuff.

Like episode nine, this episode features another technical sketch in two parts with McGuillicutty and Green, then McGuillicutty and Kurosawa. The sketch takes apart the parts of the double act, the ‘straight man’ and the ‘comic’. Often a double act differs in some way, gender or personality, sometimes even social status. Often during one sketch and another the two roles may switch if necessary. The straight man is often humourless and often sets up jokes for his partner to take and run with. This sketch shows what happens if one of those parts (in this case the straight man) doesn’t work on stage or better yet is too humourless. IT also shows how easy it is to switch the roles. Dave plays the straight man and he’s great at it for all the same reasons he was fantastic as the guy who wanted to die in the house he was born in the last episode. This time instead of normal with an edge of twisted, we see a guy who doesn’t quite understand how jokes work or perhaps knows how they work all too well. The twist is we start to laugh at the comic (Kevin) because of his frustrations with, what could be called the “straightest straight man ever.” They also twist and mangle the “Who’s on First” joke by Abbott and Costello in a very Dave way with such an innocent and understanding voice.

Roughly the same is demonstrated in the second sketch with McKinney as Kurosawa, this time playing off ethnicity. I’m not sure the second part was needed and could have just ended with Kevin pulling Dave off-stage in the first one.

Hoopla, aside from being a sorely under used word, brings us back to a whole troupe sketch and Bruce playing the aggressor as the supposed security guard. This sketch isn’t memorable, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t good. I would never say that “Hoopla” is a favourite sketch but when it comes on screen at the beginning of the episode I’m very happy to watch it. It’s quick, it’s clever and shows a more low-key attitude from the Kids (minus Bruce). The guys all look very young here, maybe amplified by the fact that they’re wearing normal clothes and they’re in a sedate setting. The only thing that seems strange to me is that it’s Mark, Kevin and Scott sitting at the table. For some reason I always think Scott is in the getaway car and Dave is at his spot at the table in the diner. It’s an interesting spin on a heist and the fact that it’s salt instead of money he’s stealing just makes it.

The drunk brothers come over at three in the morning and Theresa their sister is the perfect welcome mat for them to walk all over. People like this really exist and maybe that lends to the humour and maybe it’s funny because it’s easy to relate to. This is the sketch that really made me want to jump through the screen and demand better wigs, because the wigs are awful. It’s a strange thing to nitpick about but even for outcasts like the ones Scott and Bruce are playing, that hair just doesn’t suit them. Mark, however, playing Theresa has a fine wig and it’s just the right amount of disheveled for someone who just got woken up early in the morning.

I mean, should we abandon this food, just ’cause it’s fallen through the cracks of so-called, “normal society”?

They make us question what is garbage, maybe even asking us to question our own opinions and beliefs about certain classes of people. Mark shows that he doesn’t need to say a word to get meaning across. He doesn’t say a single word through the whole sketch and yet manages to interact with Bruce and Scott quite easily and push the plot along. The whole sketch is a great lesson in “less is more” for actors.

MacIntyre Name is weird comedy at it’s finest but that’s all I have to say on the matter.

One Step at a Time is… a sketch. I’m sorry I really struggled with finding something I like about this sketch but I can’t seem to find anything. The ending is the truly troublesome bit for me, why is Dave’s character crying? The laughing I understand and Scott’s character crying makes perfect sense given he lost his girlfriend but why is Dave crying? It’s lost on me, feel free to enlighten.

From questionable crying we move to the reappearance of the “Nobody Likes Us” guys and an extremely catchy little song. Go ahead and watch this sketch and then tell me you’re not at least humming the tune. It’s no wonder the bus breaks out into song. I must have watched these out of order the first time around because I swore this sketch was their introduction and the Bank sketch was their second. I think the song makes a great introduction, as much of an introduction as can be had with these two. The story behind the Nobody Likes Us characters that I gave a brief explanation about a post or two ago is nicely summarized by Kevin and Dave in the interview post-sketch I’ve linked above.

Lastly we come to a sketch I’ve wrongly called Blue Moon. Oh, Three for the Moon, you are a perfect stage sketch but do you translate very well for television? I’m not quite sure it does. The sketch was conceived at the Loose Moose in Calgary, Alberta (it’s still operating and only three hours from me by car) when Mark and Bruce were a part of the Audience, the troupe they had before they became part of the Kids in the Hall. It was a staple sketch and was enhanced by the available lighting setup where they could achieve a blue wash. I’m not sure TV can replicate that and it looks nice but it’s lacking some of that theatrical charm. The sketch is focused around first Mark and then Bruce’s poetry about the moon, landing on Dave who somehow, in a very “Dave way” as Mark says, squeaks through with a comment about who owns the moon. Heavy, man. Mark really shines in this sketch taking on a French poet-esque character with rather impressive ear jewelry to boot. I like the contrast between each character, romantic and free spirit to aggressive and political to Dave who doesn’t seem to fit in at all with his normal clothes. Whether they meant to or not it’s a nice message about uniting under the same thing.

This is the first episode so far that has had some highs and lows in it for me. Let me know what you think!

Next post on Thursday brings us episode 11 and to the halfway mark of season 1! We’ll meet more of the staff at A.T & Love, Danny Husk returns and more Helens!


tally110

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

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