Saturday, February 28, 2015

This One Time, I Thought I Made Up A TV Show

[Fallon, Firth, McBrayer, and Triumph playing Catchphrase - another combination that would seem to have been pulled from one of my fever dream fantasies. Colin Firth's glasses...discuss amongst yourselves...I'll be over here fanning myself.]

As previously reported, prescription pain killers were brought back into my daily routine (once again) for about a week while my body worked miraculously to heal a broken rib.

[Public Service Announcement: Even though it may seem like it, this not for profit, supposed to be "entertainment" focused blog, is not sponsored by the pharmaceutical industry.]

This has been discussed as a regular pattern through my posts over the last couple months, but I'll repeat - I'm one of those  people who probably shouldn't be taking high octane meds. It's pretty clear that they make my mind a tad more "funny" than others.

With all my ailments recently, you'd think I would have gained some sort of upper hand, where my body would have at least adapted to the effects of the pills. But this time around things only got a little more strange.

While on said medication, I seemed to drift back and forth from dreamland to awake-land, all the while the television streamed endless cable in the background - from The View, to the weather channel, to Kathy Lee and Hoda on The Today Show, to Hallmark movies, to HGTV, and beyond.

No show particularly stood out to me, since my attention span was really short, so it was all just playing as some sort of mental distraction in between naps. Where it got confusing was when the world sometimes felt so real and dreamlike at the exact same time.  These blurred lines between reality and "Justine's Land Of Curious Thoughts" ended up causing me, what I thought was, a brief moment of creative genius.

At one point during one of these days spent laying on the couch, I thought I dreamed something very lovely. In this "dream", two of my favorite things were combined together - Kenneth Ellen Parcell and a mainstay from the old Late Night With Conan O'Brien days, Triumph The Insult Comic Dog.

They were appearing on The Today Show and were being interviewed by Al Roker about a new show of theirs that was going to debut on Adult Swim. In the supposed dream state, I felt very excited over this development. A couple hours later though, I was disappointed after convincing myself that whole interview had to have been a dream, because a mad show like that could never possibly exist.

What kind of mind cooks stuff like that up?

I went on in this mindless stupor for a few days longer. There was, however, a lovely surprise when my rib was causing me less pain and the drugs were then able to wear off.

Finally able to sit up long enough to peruse the internet, I discovered that it wasn't a dream after all! The Jack & Triumph Show is real! What a roller coaster of emotions!

First of all, I felt like an idiot thinking I had made up this show. I'm not that creative people. I got over the embarrassment real fast, because this unlikely duo is making me happy for a number of reasons.

I was worried about Jack McBrayer after 30 Rock ended. He is a wonderful deadpan and wacky comedian and yet, Kenneth The Page was such an iconic character that fed off of his real personality, so I wondered if anything would be able to utilize his talents as well again.

Quite frankly, I couldn't care less what he was in, just that he be part of something. The real genius here is that McBrayer's ever present, ten million dollar smile, and continually southern gentlemanly sensibility, is teamed up with one of the crudest puppets the world has ever seen.

After watching a couple episodes of Jack and Triumph I can tell you that it's not the funniest show from beginning to end. It just started though, so let's give it a chance.

The format is interesting and creative. It is divided into part classic sitcom style, with a set, laugh track, and live audience, where the other portions are Triumph and Jack setting out into the real world interjecting themselves on various victims. Any fans of Late Night would remember that as the typical way Triumph would film his bits for Conan.

During one episode they go as their characters to a pop culture themed convention. Triumph, as he would, instantly rags on cast members from Star Trek who are signing autographs. These portions are where the show is a huge winner. Interacting with people and their reactions is where the real comedy of Triumph comes in. What needs work is the "sitcom" part, which they definitely use as a way to mock that type of multi-camera show (think, The Big Bang Theory). Even with the help of sassy June Squibb (could the casting of this BE any better?), these segments just aren't as bold as the "man on the street" elements and definitely don't have a ton of jokes that land with a huge laugh.

I am interested to see how the writing of the show develops, especially with the kind of talented people involved, including writer Robert Smigel (most known for his work on SNL) who is the hand/voice behind Triumph.

There is definitely a lot of interest in participating in the show from the general celebrity community. Paul Rudd shows up in the second episode, and based on the above clip, we at least have a guest appearance by Joey Fatone to look forward to.

Even if the show isn't perfect yet, so far, I've learned a lot from Jack and Triumph being back in my life. Mostly that dreams can come true...especially when they weren't a dream in the first place.

Check out The Jack and Triumph Show Friday's at 11:30 PM on Cartoon Network's Adult Swim. Or, it's probably online somewhere.

Any fans of these people should check out The Tonight Show clip. It's worth it just to see Colin Firth's reaction to Triumph.

Until next time.

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