This afternoon, while I was watching last night's season finale of Girls that I had to DVR in order to watch game 3 of the NBA Finals with my dad and save some semblance of a household manliness on Father's Day, my pops walked by the TV and stared at it like it was streaming live photos of feces.

"What the hell are you watching?" he asked.
"Girls."
"Ha--you are a girl."

My dad just whipped out a 3rd grade quality burn on me, one that should seem about as effective as a 58-year-old man telling me that he's rubber and I'm glue.  But it wasn't.  It stung much, much worse than that.  Because the truth is, that's exactly how I felt.  Like a girl.  Like I didn't belong.

This show didn't always make me feel like that. In fact I was so over-the-moon with the early rendition's, so connected to the struggling group of 20-somethings who adjusted to life after liberal arts college just slightly worse that I have, that I felt like the show was mine too. It may have been called Girls but, like I wrote after the show's premier, my penis didn't stop me from seeing my life on the television screen.

At some point that changed.  Not only did the show lose it's hilariously uninformed and youthful charm, becoming less about the things that get on the side of condoms and more about wrecked relationships that were both romantic and platonic in nature, but as it became less about being young and dumb (and full of cum) that trace of hysterical silliness just completely vanished. I went from live tweeting STD and heroin jokes, to wondering why everyone stopped having fun all of a sudden. 

It was a rather abrupt change.  I understand seriousness, but I don't understand people who have to be serious all the time.  Being a 24-year-old who complains about being lazy and having nothing to complain about is only part of my life; most of it is getting drunk and cracking jokes and even dancing on my own like a white kid who sucks.  A lack of money or a sense of belonging shouldn't stop you from being able to party and get loose.  The recent college grad with no plans angst shouldn't change you that much.

Of course what really changed was the character Adam, Hannah's weird boyfriend who freely masturbate in front of, and urinates on, her and has risen to center stage to become the show's male uh, protagonist?  I'm not sure that is the right word, although I guess it could be depending on how you view a guy who never wears a shirt and has the social skills of a deranged snapping turtle and generally makes you want to Ric Flair chop him until his trachea collapses and he can never talk again. 

What can't be argued is that Adam has become the show's main male point of view, maybe the most significant POV of any of the characters.  And I am not sure how to react to that.  Like my main man James Franco before me, I always thought that the dude's in this show sucked, which is fine.  I am sure the overly sensitive Charlie (who I really don't have a problem with) or aformentioned psychotic Adam would think that Jimmy Franc and I suck too.  The show was never really about them, so I never really had a problem with the girls associating themselves with douches who didn't really matter.

But now the first season is over, and you get the feeling that Adam matters as much as anybody.  Is his sudden willingness to verbally admit love for Hannah supposed to redeem him from accidently sending out picture of his ding dong?  Does the fact that I am completely sure that him kicking and verbally assaulting my car in the middle of a Brooklyn street would end in me getting out of my ride and punching him in the jaw make me the judgmental meat head who is intolerant of others?  Why does it suddenly bother me that none of the guys in the show would know who John Elway is?

Well, because the show never used to make me feel like this, like a football playing frat boy retreating into the Sigma Chi house so I could feel normal again.  It never made me feel like I wasn't hip or cool enough, like because I was a bro in college I couldn't be friends with Hannah or hit on, and get rejected by, Marney.  It never made me feel like it was portraying a life filled with people who would not be in mine.

Now, maybe I am too judgmental, or meaty, or mainstream to fit the Girls niche after all.  Maybe the discussion I am having is best left to the pop-culture gurus at Grantland (who just happen to all be women, and have some differing view of Adam).  Maybe it's OK that I feel alienated.  After all Leana Dunham, like any creative person creating content, cannot satisfy everyone in her audience with the direction she picks, the choices she makes.  At some point I just have to suck it up and roll with the punches that she throws, or get the hell out of her fist's way.

Which is all well and good, as long as she knows that she can make Adam as suddenly sweet as she wants, but it doesn't give him a pass for being a douche.  That for whatever reason, making his character matter makes me feel less wanted and accepted in the show's clique.  That he takes away the youthful silliness, and makes everyone on the TV screen seem less like my friends.

And maybe that's alright too.  Season 1 has closed, and I still count myself as a devoted watcher, even a devoted fan.

Although now I'm a slightly ostracized one. 

One hoping that Hannah's next boyfriend takes her to a Yankees game and talks to her about Derek Jeter and buys a beer, if only so I can imagine myself sitting next to them without wanting to be somewhere else.  If only because I want the show to belong to me too again.

If only because I want to laugh with my friends, without feeling like the one who is unwanted or judged or not cool.

Adam is not my friend, and he never will be--at least not until someone delivers that Ric Flair chop to his throat and teaches him that you need to be way bigger and tougher if you are going to treat innocent drivers like attempted murders.

Call that meathead justice.  I'll call it the way the real world works.

Then we can all remember that we left the liberal arts college, and start making inappropriate STD jokes together again.

Just like we did 3 or 4 weeks ago, or as I call them--the good ole' days.
 
 
There's something about the word "retard" that raises our hackles. And no I am not (just) saying that to mock one of my professor who uses the phrase "raise your hackles" incessantly without realizing that 1-I don't know what it means, and 2-He sounds like a dweeb.  I am saying it because the word "retard"--once common vernacular in our society--now pisses people off.  It's insensitive.  It's politically correct. It's not condoned by the cast of Glee.  It's wrong.

So imagine for a second that the Vice-President of the United States used the word at a press conference?  An unholy shit-storm of New York Time's op-ed pieces would break out right, offending every farmer in South Dakota (who wasn't offended by the use of the word in the first place) right?  Of course.  Unless it was said by a fictional Vice-President, played by the lady from Seinfeld, on an HBO sitcom.  Everyone can agree that that's just hilarious.

And that's the genius behind HBO's newest comedy Veep.  It's not that the Vice-President said the word "retard" out loud to the whole entire world.  It's that the Vice-President could say it.  It's that this Vice-President saying it is almost expected.

Which is somehow different than saying that fictional VPOTUS Selena Gomez (played by Seinfeld's Julia Louis-Dreyfuss) is so incompetent that she just starts espousing offensive remarks whenever she's in front of rolling cameras.  After all real-life incompetence (or the media's manifestation of it) is only funny for so long.  I mean I haven't laughed at a Dick Cheney quail hunt joke for hours, and no one ever laughed at hard at them as they did at the Wedding Crashers quail hunt scene in the first place.

So no it's not (solely) incompetence that makes Veep go, just like it wasn't (solely) incompetence that made Michael Scott my hero.  There is way more to it than that.  Because, like with Michael Scott, you get to see much more than a bumbling moron who can never seem to get it right in Selena Gomez.  She isn't just a career-politician who says inappropriate things.  She is the fake-life personification of something more real than that.

Look, I've never worked in an Office, but I can still certainly tell you that part of the reason that the show worked was because everything about it seemed--at least to a point--authentic.  Dwight was (is?) the crazy, Battlestar Gallactica dork who took work way too seriously.  Creed was the old guy who didn't quite know who you were yet invited you to throw rocks down the quarry with him anyway.  Jim was the handsome slacker who just didn't want to do anything with his life.  And Michael was the awkward, inappropriate, wants-to-be-everyone's-best-friend kinda boss.  He had no friends.  He had no life.  He tried publicly to kiss the gay guy to prove that he wasn't, in fact, a homophobe.

But he was also a good guy, and--perhaps more importantly for the show's legitimacy--good at his job.  He wasn't some high falutin, caviar eating Ivy Leaguer with a rich daddy.  He was a guy who had been with the same company for a long time, putting in the time, effort and sales numbers to earn everything he had every gotten.  He was a regular Joe who often did the wrong thing, and said the wronger thing, but cared about his job, and the people he worked with.  In the end he had earned his position as the Boss...and he was an overall good one.

And Veep works in much the same way, at least in the fact that 1-I have never been in the Vice-President's Office and 2-Everything seems authentic.  The guy from Old School and The Hangover (and who says 1 line in every other Todd Phillip's movie) is the grizzled, f-bomb dropping Washington veteran.  That young "shit" Dan is the ambitious, willing to leak the president's possible heart attack to get ahead, young insider trying to climb the political ladder.  Buster from Arrested Development is the socially-awkward nerd who always seems to get sneezed on by other socially-awkward nerds.  And Selena Gomez is Michael Scott.

Now it took Michael Scott well into season 2 (and probably further) to learn how to straddle that line, how to be inappropriate instead of incompetent, ignorant instead of stupid, a loveable guy who loses instead of a loser.  It'll take time for Selena Gomez to learn to do the same; to learn how to pass laws and act like she's been in the White House Situation room before in between stints of public defecation at a frozen yoghurt stand.  It'll take time for her to learn how to do something worthwhile in the most worthless job in Washington.

Veep may be no The Office (despite what some pro football writers may be think), but it could--one day--be something like it.  And a character like Selena Gomez could do a lot worse than becoming something like Michael Scott.  But first she has to figure out that you don't call retarded people "retards" (not in public at least).

You call your friends "retards" when they are acting retarded.
 
 
Dude, 23 and 24-year-old girls are so chill.  They move to the big city, get together every night, and sip wine.  They complain about men either wanting to have too much sex, or making too much love.  They imagine ways to get STD's, and provide a logical arguments for how getting AIDS could improve their lives.  They struggle in a way in which only people from relatively "privileged" families could, imagining pain and sorrow because they have to grow up and make their own way in the world.  Basically, they live my life.  And it's even more awesome then it sounds.

Which is the genius behind Girls in the first place.  Sure some curmudgeons out there want to decry that the show only illustrates "privileged" or "first-world" struggles instead of the very real and very desperate pain so many in our society endure, or that it somehow marginalizes women because it portrays them as being unable to handle the transition to full on grown-upness, or even that it is only on TV because Lena Dunham's mother was rich and famous enough to finance her independent film, basically paying for her daughter's big break.

But, these critics are missing the show's fundamental point.  Because the show was hyped and then almost instantly became ridiculously hip, it has quickly come under attack, as the critic's backlash has built up and attacked a message which the show doesn't really intend to send (in my opinion anyways).  I mean just do a google search for "HBO GIRLS criticism" and see the results pop up, from legitimate news and literary sources like the New York Times, Washington Post, and even The New Yorker, to rinky dink blogs like this one where people make jokes about women not being funny or able to drive.  In places where dude's act like Tina Fey or Danica Patrick never even existed.

Now, some may argue that the backlash is good, that only a show of Girls' quality and unusual character focus (for a comedy at least) could cause 8 billion articles better than this one to be written about it, that female, or minority, or underprivileged driven comedies, or TV Shows/Movies of any sort, are too rare in this day and age; that putting a microscope up to and examining characters from these backgrounds, even if they are fictional people in a fictional world, forces us to think about tough issues like racial and gender equality within society.  And I am not disagreeing.  Television and film certainly can be popular methods of promoting social realization and change in the greater world.  In fact, they certainly should be.

But at their core they are still forms entertainment.  Look it was great that Bridesmaids was a film made by women for women; but it was better that it was good.  The same can be said of the premdominantly black Think Like a Man, which crossed all sort of perceived racial boundaries to steal the #1 spot at this weekend's box office. In the end women may like Twilight while men abhor it, or black audiences may love Tyler Perry while white ones think he makes pure garbage, but true quality will always rise to the top.

Which is the point in the first place.  Just because Girl's is about girls themselves doesn't mean that their story has to carry the torch for all of women-hood.  The joke may have been crushed by the media, but Girls' and Precious are still distinct stories about distinct groups of people.  Both are art imitating life; illustrations of real struggle whether it's "first-world privilege" or real, life-and-death strife.  The stakes may be higher in one, but both stories matter because both stories are good.  And in the end that's what counts--that both are entertaining us, while also making us think.

It's great that Girls stars a group of young and talented women.  It's spectacular that it shows real-life women's issues (like abortion) in a very interesting light; at times treating the most serious of issues with unadulterated humor, holding a mirror up to them and making men like me laugh, and then think about what it must be like.  About how this issue is specific to women, about how it's something I will never know; about how it is something I can hopefully better understand.

But that is not all that the show is about.  As a 24-year-old aspiring writer who thinks he can write a memoir, I can tell you that it is much deeper than that. As a guy from an upper-middle class family, who has no income of his own, and still uses his parent's credit card to pay for gas, bar tabs and Chipotle burritos, I can say that it is telling my story too.  Even if the struggles are only perceived, the show works because I can identify with it. 

It still works because I can say that the show is (somewhat at least) about my life--that it parallels my reality.  That it shows me exactly what my life would be like if I didn't have a penis. 

There's a whole generation of narcissistic 20-somethings out there who don't know what real-life is like.  It doesn't matter if they are men or women.  It matters that their perhaps-meaningless story is told. 

That's what Girls does.  And that's why it works.  It may not be the voice of my generation, or yours.  But it is, unequivocally, A voice of A generation. 

And a realization that one day just not being a drug addict won't be good enough.  That one day my parent's credit card will be canceled, and--like a real life grown up--I'll have to pay my own cable bill.
 
 
The journey of Kenny Power's has certainly been a wacky roller-coaster ride, complete with a Major League drug flame out, a stint as a somehow accredited Georgia gym teacher, a complete bottom out in Mexican cockfighting, a rebirth as a hot AA prospect, the literal birth of a son, and his most recent Cameron Crowe esque walkout after throwing two beautiful strikes for the Texas Rangers. 

It's been a harrowing journey to be sure, one that slipped from ecstasy filled dance offs to dark Mexican cornrows, from drunken speeches that indicated intercourse with an infant to glorious redemption that vindicated America's victory in the Cold War.  In the end there aren't enough events in the show's 21 chapters, enough adjectives in the English language, to truly euologize Kenny Power's the baseball player, the father, the man.  He's been thoughtful, self-destructive, inappropriate, inspirational, emotionally-damaging, mean, cruel, narcissistic, kind, and at-all-times hilarious.  He's been a human being who let his story unfold on premium cable, and taught us more about ourselves than he ever did himself.

And now it looks like it's finally over.  Season 3 may have been the show's last, the final arch in the rocky story of Kenny Powers.  We now may be paying our $9.95 a month HBO subscription just to watch incest fueled royal time pieces and 24-year-old Girls who remind our parent's that they've been raising a generation of babies who cannot support themselves financially (not that I am complaining. Both shows are awesome). We now may only get to see Kenny Powers in K-Swiss commercials that prove to us that Jeremy Shockey is not, in fact, dead.

And we're all sad to see it go, but in a way--we should be happy that it's ending.  This was a carefully crafted time-piece, the story of a man's life told to us 6-8, 30 minute stories at a time.  If season one was about showing us how far Kenny Powers had fallen, then season 2 was about showing us how much farther he had to go to hit the proverbial Mexican rock bottom.  And if season 2 was about Kenny Power's flame finally extinguishing, season 3 was about the seeming impossible chance that it could be reignited.  That the man from Shelby, Georgia could reach the top of the mountain once again.

But that view--that this whole story is about one man's attempt to get back to being the flame-throwing, gay bashing, premium cable version of John Rocker on a national stage--is too simplistic.  Now that we've all seen how it ends, we know that professional redemption was never the point to begin with.  We know that, as sappy and un-Powers-like as this sounds, this whole story was about one man learning to be better, one ass-hole learning how to care about someone other than himself, one egomaniac learning how to be a friend, a father, a partner to the big titted girl from his hometown.  About Kenny Powers learning how to be something he's not; and someone with a shred of redeemable human qualities.

So now that we all know that it's over, the question becomes--what do we make of the end?  Why did Kenny Powers have to walk off the mound, and fake his own death?  Why couldn't he still play baseball and become the decent, male family man, who only used cocaine in moderation? Why didn't he get to have it all?

Well before I remind you all that Bob Saget doesn't narrate this show and it's not on CBS, let me do this first. Let me take you back to Matthew McConaughey's pregame prayer before Kenny took the mound in Texas that final time.  Let's us come to Jesus with gratitude for shepherding Kenny Powers back.  Let us prove that Kenny Powers has successfully sucked his dream's dick. 

We all thought that there was much more to come.  We all thought that now it was Kenny Power's time.  We all thought that it was up to him, that it was Kenny Powers' decision whether to spit--or to swallow.

And it was.  Now we may have made a different choice then to spit; then to leave the mound, fake our own deaths, and return to our family and a normal life.  As April so readily reminded us, it would have made a whole lot more sense for her and Toby to join Kenny in Texas.  That was the logical way to end the story.

But with Kenny Powers, logic is never the point.  The point is, that while we may love this story, it isn't ours to tell.  It isn't ours to live.  It was Kenny Powers' comeback.

All we did is stand by him while he did it.  And, while that may not be as hard as actually doing the comeback itself--it's still something.  Even a man like Kenny Powers is capable of admitting that.

We may have cried tears of depression when we thought Kenny was dead, but we should be crying tears of joy now that we know that he's alive.  In the end, Kenny Powers may be gone, but he will never die. 

That's the legacy the man deserved.  That's the legacy the man got.  And there's no sweeter way to end his story than that.
 
 
Race remains as uncomfortable a subject as their is in this country, even with the historic election of our very own Black President.  Say nothing about the subject and you come across as ignorant, colorblind fool who pretends that there is no difference between Eddie Murphy and Tom Brokaw.  Say something and you run the risk of coming across as even more ignorant, as either as an insensitive, politically incorrect moron, or  a holier-than-thou, martyr who thinks the color of one's skin is the determining factor in their life.  Basically, when the subject of race comes up it's very easy to seem like either a bigot or a crybaby.  Getting a logical and well reasoned point across is a very difficult tightrope to try and walk.

Which brings me to Sunday's Academy Awards, and specifically Billy Crystal's impersonation of Sammy Davis Jr. (see youtube video below) during the show's opening.  Watching it live I didn't think much of Crystal's Sammy Davis Jr/Justin Bieber/Midnight in Paris mash up (besides the fact that I didn't laugh and wasn't sure why Sammy was riding around in that carriage thing) because 1-It was something I knew Crystal had done before, 2-Davis was Crystal's close personal friend, and supposedly approved of the bit in the past and 3-Crystal was impersonating a specific person, who happened to be black, and not some sort of racially stereotypical generic black person.  Needless to say it didn't set off any racially offensive alarm bells for me.  The thought honestly never even crossed my mind.

Which may not mean anything to anybody because I am a white male who is about as politically correct as a Chapelle's Show skit.  However, once "Yo Is This Racist?" blog founder Andrew Ti took to Grantland.com and blasted both Crystal and the Academy for the bit, it got me thinking.  What makes something racist? 

Usually my answer to that would be simply to say, "hey watch it...and you'll know."  But, it is clear that the answer to this question is far more complex than that.  I wasn't even aware that anyone could have viewed Crystal's Davis Jr. impersonation as racist, and am still not sure that I understand why somebody else from a different background does. 

Which is the real problem.  We live in a society where comparing a movie director to Hitler can get you fired from a blockbuster movie franchise, when 15 years ago equating a Soup Chef to a Nazi was the funniest thing that any of us had ever seen.  Where Dave Chapelle, the Wayans brothers, Robert Downey Jr., SNL cast members or Chris Lilley can alter their racial appearance and make people laugh with very little or no controversy, but apparently Billy Crystal cannot do the same. 

And I am not condoning or defending any of the people I mentioned above.  I am just promoting an honest discourse about what and why something is deemed as racist and why it is not.  Because as Ti points out, blackface has a disgusting and indefensible history in show business.  But there was also a time where men dressed up to play Lady Macbeth  as a way to keep women off the stage and out of the public limelight.  Was that sexist and demeaning?  I don't see how it couldn't be.  However, does that mean that Robin Williams' performance in Mrs. Doubtfire or Dustin Hoffman's in Tootsie falls under the same category? I haven't met too many people who think so.

And this kind of double edged sword has applied in Hollywood since I can remember.  TV sitcoms like The Cosby Show and the Fresh Prince of Bel-Air featured black families who had become economically prosperous, highlighting a promising societal trend and hopefully showing White America that one day (hopefully soon) a black person is just as likely to be a part of your golfing foursome at the Country Club as they are to be the guy who is carrying your bag. 

However, the shows also featured characters like Carlton Banks, who always seemed to be the butt of jokes for not being "black" enough because he wore polo shirts, loved Tom Jones and was president of the Young Republicans club.  The shows gave White America positive insight into what the Black Family unit could be.  But, it could be argued, that they may not have given a completely accurate one, as even the characters on the shows themselves struggled with their own racial identity.

So now, 20 or so later, show business is facing the same issue.  Should we be celebrating the cast of The Help for their moving, Oscar nominated performances? Or should be lamenting the fact that actresses so talented only gained recognition for playing maids and servants?  Should we be giving the comedians I mentioned above (Chapelle et al) props for their hilariousness and innovation?  Or should we be tearing them down for championing the same technique that comes from an ugly past and apparently ruffled some feathers on Sunday night?

In the end I don't know the answer to these questions, and I am not sure anyone else does either.  What I do know is that race does not exist in a vacuum.  Racial issues, and the way they are perceived, are constantly changing.  And, as shown by the fact that 94% of the voters for the Academy are white, racial equality is not reality in Hollywood (or anywhere else really).  Not by a long shot.

In the end show business is based upon an art-form, which is fundamentally based on people appearing on a screen pretending to be someone (or something) that they are, in reality, not.  This media, like any other, should be able to push and explore racial boundaries without being racist.  And, most of all, it should be funny.  95% of us can agree that Crystal's impersonation on Sunday was not.  But does that lack of humor (or anything else for that matter) make it racist? I don't see any credible authority out there that can give any of us a concrete answer on that.

And there won't be until there's an open and honest discourse about race in Hollywood.  Until then, I am afraid that this recent history of "racism" in show business is doomed to repeat itself.

An actor will pretend to be somebody that he or she isn't on a screen.  A minority of people watching will be offended.  And a majority of people will not understand why. 

Will there ever come a point and time when no one is ever offended by (attempts at) racially humor?  I doubt it.  But, can we ever come a point and time where we understand how we all think well enough to worry more about whether something is funny than if it crosses some sort of racist threshold?  Where we can all understand where the racial threshold is, and not cross it in the first place?

God I hope so.  After all, at the end of the day there is one thing we can all agree on. 

A guy can dream can't he?

 
 
"My story is the story of a ragin' Christ figure who tore himself off the cross, looked at the Romans and said 'this is my time cock suckers.'" If truer words have ever been said in TV history than this incredibly poignant soliloquy echoed by Kenny Powers in the season 3 premier of Eastbound & Down last night...then I don't know what they are.  Really I don't.  I've spent the day rewatching episodes of Curb, The Office, It's Always Sunny, Cheers, Cosby, etc. in my mind and I honestly can't think of a string of words, a single quote, that crystallized a show or a character as well as Kenny P did last night.  Maybe I am missing something, but I am pretty sure I'm not.  Let me know though, because I've been wrong more than once, but less than 7,394,287 times.

The only thing that comes to mind is George Costanza's famous line, "If you take everything I've ever accomplished in my entire life, and condense it into one day...it looks decent," which I always thought was the greatest quote in television history. Because here, George said something about himself that was so spot on, so full of self-awareness and devoid of any kind of hyperbole, that it was almost unbelievable that any person (real or fiction) could make such an observation about the quality of his life out loud to other people (and in front of a camera).  By this point Costanza had spent the past 6 season living of a life where a lack of ambition met a lack of talent, and curiously manifested itself into a job with the winningest franchise in professional sports.  No one, George included, knew how he had survived in New York, landed a job with the Yankees, or scored a date (much less got engaged) with any woman who wasn't covered with flesh eating boils

The fact that George knew, and was willing to express, that everything he accomplished throughout the course of his entire life could be fit into a 24 hour period and be just good enough not to blow anyone away is a piece of baffling genius.  The fact that Costanza is proud of this, and willing to display it to prove to a woman that New York couldn't "eat him alive," tells you everything you need to know.  George has no illusion of grandeur, and backed his way into a decent livelihood.  He knows it and the viewer knows it too, even if this is the only 10 seconds of the show they have ever watched.  That's the genius behind Costanza's level of self-awareness here.  He showed us who is was for years, and then told us exactly what we had been seeing in one clever sentence.

Which is also exactly what Kenny Powers did in the Eastbound season 3 premier.  We all had spent the past 2 season watching Kenny Powers, the once superstar closer who took Major League Baseball by storm, turn into a wash out, snorting lines of blow before being forced to teach middle schoolers how to play capture the flag.  However (at least initially) Kenny Power's fall from grace did nothing to change his narcissistic love for his past self.  That was the difference between someone like Kenny P and someone like George Costanza.  Costanza knew exactly who he is.  Powers knew exactly who he was.  Reality changes, even if our conceptions of it don't.

And even as Kenny Powers regained his form and knocks Reg McWorthy's eye right out of his socket, we never get the feeling that Power's was back.  And that's because he wasn't. Instead he battled himself right out of April's life and into a downward spiral which eventually resulted in him chucking fastballs past clueless Mexicans in season 2.  We now had seen Kenny Power's teaching gym, fighting cocks and overwhelming a bunch of guys who have no idea what he once was.  But we haven't seen him anywhere near the Big Show.  That is until Matthew McConaughey shows up in Mexico and tells Kenny P. to suck his dream's dick

Which brings us to last night, and the opening of season 3, where Kenny is dominating AA with 98 mph heaters.  Kenny Powers is almost there, almost all the way back.  He's knocking on the Show's door, and seemingly unzipping his dream's pants and waiting to insert the tip of its penis into his mouth.  Kenny Power's is so close that he can almost taste his dream's cock.

And that's why the opening quote is so paramount.  Not because Kenny Powers is Jesus, or even Tim Tebow (even though Kenny certainly sees parallels between the two), but because Kenny Power's now knows where he is.  Before his prophecies of greatness were nothing but grandstanding, and illusions of grandeur.  Really they were exactly what George Costanza's quote was not.  They were about Kenny Powers in the past, not Kenny Powers in the present.  And everyone but Kenny P. himself knew it.

But now Kenny Power's comparing himself to Christ, and asserting to the world that this is his time, is no exaggeration.  Power's has already endured his "crucifixion," his exile into Baseball hell where greatness has more than passed him by.  But now Kenny Power's story has become one of redemption.  He's risen from the dead, and is ready to return to the top of the mountain.  He's ready to rip himself off the cross, look all his doubters in the eye, and tell them one thing.

This is Kenny Power's time cocksuckers.  So get the out of the way motherfucker.  Cause you don't want to be on the tracks when the fuckin' Power's train comes through.
 
 
My children,
As all of you should surely know, one of our TV sheep has returned to his TV flock, and for that we rejoice even if it means that this certain Parks & Rec character's dreams were destroyed quicker than Sodom and Gomorrah.  That's right ladies and gentleman, after much debate and inner turmoil...Tom Haverford is back at his old job.  And the parks in Pawnee, Indiana will never be the same again.  But they will be the same as they were when he worked in the Parks department in seasons 1-3.

Now as the Son of God at one point or another I said that "you can never go home again," and then somebody wrote it in the Bible.  However, while I may have actually said that, and everything I've ever said is important enough to be published in the World's best selling book of all time, even I (Christ) sometime make blanket statements that may not always apply to every fictional scenario created by the writers of every fictional sitcom.  And I should not, and cannot, be held accountable for that.

That being said, it's time for TV fans everywhere (and citizens of Indiana) to rejoice about Tommy's return.  Entertainment 720 may have established a once in a lifetime corporate structure and workplace environment, but it wasn't going to last forever.  It's about time Tom Haverford returned to his proper place.  Otherwise known as his desk in Leslie Knope's office.

Weekly Awards

Best of the Best
Comedy Jesus "I'll Die on a Cross to Make You Laugh" Superstar OTW: Tom Haverford, Parks & Rec
Is this category really up for debate this week?  Did any of you read what I just wrote?  If you answered no to both of those questions...then my pops didn't create you with as much common sense and/or lying ability as he should have.

John the Baptist "I'll Show Up and Dunk Your Head in a River" Cameo OTW: Leslie Mann, Modern Family
Judd Apatow's wife has gotten busy with a lot of dudes in her day, including Adam Sandler and that lizard in Rio, but letting a gay guy pick you up so you will have someone to go shopping with?  That's enough to earn you an award from me...even if this episode was one like a half a month ago or something like that

Mary Magdalene "Promiscuous Girl" OTW: Karl's Mom, Workaholics
What better way to celebrate your drug dealer's son's wedding to an upstanding Asian broad than by slamming his best frienemy (friend/enemy...duh) who is only some 30 years younger than you?  God...I hope every young man gets to the chance to feel such pride in his parents.

Quote OTW: "Jogging is the worst Chris. God, I know it keeps you healthy...but at what cost?"
-Anne Perkins
Shockingly Anne Perkins has taken this award home twice already this season.  Perhaps even more shocking...both of these awards were well deserved.  Looks like somebody got over Jim Halpert picking Pam instead of her in The Office...and is now a shockingly funny woman.  No small feat on any account right there.

Comedy Jesus "Top Half Dozen Apostles" Power Rankings
1) Parks & Recreation, NBC-Did I mention that Tom Haverford is working at the Parks Department again?  Or that Anne Perkins is both an attractive nurse and hilarious?  Or that Andy will soon get his chance to play with lasers?  Well, as it turns out that last one isn't quite true...which is indeed a bummer.  But Parks & Rec has done more than enough to stay on top.

2) It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia, FX-How do you sneak out of a house you broke into that's filled with Asians who somehow speak in a Southern accent?  Well...you just walk out the front door.  We know that now.  And we can thank It's Always Sunny for that.

3) Workaholics, Comedy Central-Karl is giving up drug dealing to marry an Asian, who then leaves him at the alter.  What do you do in that situation?  Well...you tear gas the entire crowd.  That's pretty obvious.

4) Community, NBC-Annie moves in with Troy and Abed?  Can anyone else see a multi-racial three-way coming into the shows story arch here soon?  Well I can, and I kinda now everything so...Community's ratings should get a serious boost here soon.

5) South Park, Comedy Central-There's no proof that aliens weren't at the first Thanksgiving so...the History Channel should be telling people that there were.  That's just reliable journalism right there.

6) The Office, NBC-Yeah the comedy selection this week didn't really go a half-dozen deep.  And the Office is still far too emotional for God's liking.  But hey I promised you six shows so...you're gonna get six shows.

Worst of the Worst
Man Up, ABC-I have no idea if this show was even on this week.  But, I do know that I have seen it.  And those are 30 minutes of my life that I will never get back.  Watch the trailer and you'll probably feel the same way.  Well, at least about that 1 minute and 55 seconds of your life.

Comedy Judas "I'll Stab You in the Back" Traitor OTW: Cam, Modern Family
You have never betrayed me Cameron.  But two weeks ago when you pretended to be straight...you betrayed your own identity.  But it also made me laugh so...I guess all's well that ends well.  That's in the bible too.

Back with more next week.  Until then, may peace and laughter be with you,
Comedy Jesus Christos
 
 
My children,
As all of you should know, Comedy Central has become America's most reliable news source.  With trusted, completely politically unbiased talking heads like Jon Stewart, Stephen Colbert, Daniel Tosh and the guys who created South Park/converted to Mormonism Comedy Central has always shown both me and my father the utmost respect when portraying us on basic cable/Dish Network.  And they've also shown the utmost credibility when covering breaking news across the world, including the state of the US economy.

And now Comedy Central has a new source for accurately portraying the plight of common Americans.  Workaholics, the network's newest foray into hilariousness, follows the lives of 3 of the United State's finest fictional employees as recent college grads Adam, Blaker and Ders make heroic efforts to juggle alcoholism, strip club visits, and their demanding job in America's most prosperous industry...telemarketing. 

However, while the show once focused on the simple laugh out loud escapades of it's main dudes, such as trips to the Black Chucky Cheese or their ultimate bout with soberiety, it's latest episode hit a little closer to home than it's past efforts.  It fact it reminded us all of own corporate mortality. 

That's because Adam, one of television comedy's most promising young protagonists, was fired.  And while the firing may look fake, and Adam is still actually employed, it taught us all an important less.  We cannot take our lifestyle for granted.  We cannot forget that we are all replaceable.  Because, at the end of the day, even the most hilarious of fictional sitcom characters...are part of the 99%.  Comedy Central went there, and the son of God gives them credit for that.  We are real people in a trying time doing the best that we can.  And America's most serious news source hasn't forgotten that.  So it looks like society still cares about us after all.  This is all the proof you should really need about that.

Weekly Awards

Best of the Best
Comedy Jesus "I'll Die on a Cross to Make You Laugh" Superstar OTW: Adam DeMap, Workaholics
Adam rock a killer onesie, almost got fired, and successfully faked a suicide in 22 minutes of TV.  If that doesn't inspire you in times like these...then I don't know what the f will.  Keep on well...just keep trucking America.  You can still accomplish anything that you've ever dreamed of (but probably not everything that you've ever dreamed of. Let's be realistic).

John the Baptist "I'll Show Up and Dunk Your Head in a River" Cameo OTW: Mark Zuckerberg, Parks & Rec
Did Mark Zuckerberg really make an appearance on Parks & Recreation this week?  Well his face was blacked out, and he did sound a lot like Aziz Ansari, but as God's son I can tell you...it was really him.  And that's great news.  It's about time Mark decided to give back to fictional government employees trying to start fictional small entertainment business in middle America...instead of just hoarding money or donating it to already spoiled Newark, New Jersey public school children to "better" their already stellar education or using his life story to try and give Justin Timberlake a legitimate feature film career.  Bout time you gave back Zuckerberg...bout time.

Mary Magdalen "Promiscious Girl" OTW: Millicent Gergich, Parks & Rec
How did this man produce this woman as a daughter?  I have no idea.  But I guarantee you that Jerry Gergich has never been more proud as a father than when he saw his daughter hooking up with Rob Lowe at a Halloween Party.  Every parent should get a chance to witness something so beautiful from their children.  I mean Rob Lowe was in St. Elmo's Fire was Christ's (my own) sake!!

Comedy Jesus "Top Half Dozen Apostles" Power Rankings
1) Parks & Recreation, NBC-Easy reclaims its top spot after its early bye week.  It also gave us a potential savior for the economic troubles I discussed above.  She may be a woman (not that there's anything wrong with that...as long as she's not driving a car), but if you don't vote for Leslie Knope in 2012 you're dumber than a dummy.  Or Forrest Gump...whichever culture reference makes more of an impact on you politically.

2) Workaholics, Comedy Central-I am firmly aboard the Workaholics bandwagon.  As I wrote earlier its true stories about fictional people with real problems.  And that's powerful stuff right there.

3) It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia, FX-If this clip doesn't make you wanna play Chardee then you either 1-Don't drink alcohol, 2-Don't eat cakes, 3-Don't like people throwing darts at your hand or 4-Don't have a soul.  None of which are alright in my book...Aka THE BIBLE.

4) The Office, NBC-The Office is back in the power rankings?  Andy Bernard is dating someone who isn't Erin Hannon?  Meredith Palmer is picking up ghosts in a bar and banging them?  Are these statements are equally unbelievable, which is why they are all followed by question marks?  I'm Jesus Christ? Only one of these claims is a complete fabrication?

5) South Park, Comedy Central-Broadway musicals cause women to give incredible oral sex?  Premise accepted (see youtube video below).  Also not a sin within marriage.  Wait is that true?  I'll have to ask the pope bout that one.

6) The League, FX-How sweet does a three way with Pete and Rafi sound?  Sinfully sweet...like everything else I have written about so far in this post.  Where the hell is the FCC when you need them?

Worst of the Worst
Modern Family, ABC-Hey, as I wrote last week, bye weeks in TV are not a good thing.  This is especially true when you are a show featuring a gay couple, Virginia from Happy Gilmore, Sofia Vergara, Al Bundy from Married with Children, and the hysterical trifecta of Phil Dunphy/Luke Dunphy/Manny (whatever the hell his last name is) and it's Halloween week.  If you can't think of some original content here...then you are about as creative as I am. Spoiler Alert...that's not a compliment.

Comedy Judas "I'll Stab Ya in the Back" Traitor OTW: Tom Haverford, Parks & Rec
Hilarious?  Yes.  Undeniably charming with the chicas?  Sure.  A sellout who betrays Leslie Knope in order to try and save his business?  Evidently.  Stick to numbers 1 and 2 there Tommy boy.  God will love you much more that way...trust me.  I know.

 
 
My children,
As all of you should know this past week was a slow one in the world of TV comedy.  First, NBC decided to take a week of from producing new television (aka doing their jobs) which is understandable you know...since their ratings haven't been embarrassing enough yet this season or anything.  Then Modern Family decided to play the "no one knows whether this dude is gay or straight" game, which seems to be a staple of a show that leaves viewers so confused that they often end up with no idea who they are/should be sexually attracted to (arguably its biggest, and probably only, downfall).  Finally South Park followed up an all-time classic triple race sandwich with a literal stinker that revolved around little kids and Mr. Mackey crapping their pants at an elementary school?

Alright so that last one isn't all bad (hey the Son of God thinks unplanned, public defication is as funny as the next guy), but the point remains the same...this week's TV sitcoms left an awful lot to be desired.  However it is in times of hilarity weakness, times like these, where the Comedy Messiah is presented with an opportunity to see what else is out there.  And as I waded through the crappy mediocrity that is the TV comedies that God's son himself had somehow not already heard about, I had a startiling revelation.  Purgatory can be kinda of funny...if it's set in the suburbs.

Now some of you may not believe in purgatory, and I am certainly not going to drop the biggest spoiler alert in internet history by telling you all what to expect in the after life, but if you do think that the purging of your sins is an inevitable process once you die...then I got the TV show for you. 

ABC's surprise comedy hit Suburgatory tells the story of a single father who relocates himself and his teenager daughter out of the modern day Sodom and Gomorrah that is New York City and into one of the city's wholesome and morally just surrounding communities once he finds condoms in her dresser drawer (just more proof that the Catholic Church's position on contraception is indeed correct...or something like that).  What ensues is hysterical satire involving boob jobs, soccer moms, lots of money and of course...white people listening to gangster rap.  Well hysterical might be too strong a word (in fact is definitely too strong a word), but hey it's entertaining...and is practical to you religious folks out there.  And in times like these...that might be all that really matters.

Weekly Awards

Best of the Best
Comedy Jesus "I'll Die on a Cross to Make You Laugh" Superstar OTW: Dennis Reynolds, It's Always Sunny
Imagine that a hurricane is coming to destroy your city, and civilization on the Eastern seaboard as we know it, and instead of hoarding supplies at preparing for your part in repopulating society, you are going on homicidal rants against chicks with boyfriends and nervously hitting on a news reporter with gigantic breasts and questionable journalistic integrity.  If you think this is a position you would never allow yourself to be in, then I feel sorry for you are no real life Dennis Reynolds...I can tell you that much.  And I feel sorry for you for that.

John the Baptist "I'll Show Up and Dunk Your Head in a River" Cameo OTW: Matthew Berry, The League
ESPN's fantasy football expert finally gets the call up to the TV big league with this guest spot on The League.  Funny thing is this is the same "expert" who told me to pick Michael Vick #1 overall in our holy trinity fantasy league, and now the Holy Spirit is kicking my ass.  I mean the Holy Spirit?  He isn't even a person.  You're lucky the almighty is still letting good things happen to you there Berry.  I wouldn't expect it come week 17 if this crap keeps happening.

Mary Magdalen "Promiscious Girl" OTW: The Au Pair, The League
The League's continues this week's dominance by introducing some unamed teenage girl into the best of the best awards.  Now some of you may be wondering, "what the f is an au pair?" So I'll help you.  You see "au pair" is an old, old Yiddish word for a young girl who serves as a live-in babysitter for couples with young children.  Now usually an au pairs end up descimating marriages and causing statutory rape by seducing the man of the household into unspeakable sexual acts.  However The League's au pair actually seduced one of the husband's best friends, allowing their marriage to stay intact.  Either way, it's pretty whorish/Mary Magdalen esque behavior if you ask me.

Quote OTW: "Oh Mr. Sunshine?"
-Taco, The League
I don't know what part of this quote is funnier that 1-Taco confused Matthew Berry for Matthew Perry, 2-Taco recognized Matthew Perry as Mr. Sunshine and not Chandler from friends or that guy from the movie with Bruce Willis or 3-That this quote is being written about completely out of context so you (the reader) really have no idea what the f I am talking about?  That's really a tough call...even for the Messiah of laughs (aka me).

Comedy Jesus "Top Half Dozen Apostles" Power Rankings
1) The League, FX-No Parks and Rec means this week's top spot is up for grabs.  A sexually active au pair/Matthew Berry/Andre's online dating profile (see youtube video below) means that The League is taking it home.  Enjoy it fellas...something tells me it might not last with Parks & Rec's return next week.

2) It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia, FX-Y2K bunkers, pickled eggs, large breasteses, a homeless man named cricket getting shot, and severe looting and rioting?  Welcome to It's Always Sunny.  It never makes sense...but it always goes down smooth.

3) Workaholics, Comedy Central-Comedy continues this week's domination with Workaholics well earned spot at #3.  Wanna know why it's well earned?  Well...have you ever dreamed of bringing strippers to a Chucky Cheese filled with black people and getting a lap dance on some sort of enclosed slide?  Of course you have...and these guys made it a reality.  Good work boys.

4) South Park, Comedy Central-Did you see that clip earlier of Mr. Mackey crappin his trousers?  Well that alone gives South Park the number 4 spot.  Cause I'm the son of God...and that's funny to me.

5) Modern Family, ABC-Despite that whole gay/straight dude trying to smang Claire I mentioned in the intro this was a solid ep.  Phil Dunphy back on a college campus?  Manny maybe masturbating in his room (and instead hanging upside down from some sort of pole)?  Those are both good things to build on.

6) Happy Endings, ABC-The underrated follow up to Modern Fam on ABC's Wednesday night schedule cracks the rankings for the first time.  Why?  Max gives limo tours around Chi City and Mr. Brown from The Office has food on his face.  Actually I have no idea if any of these events were from this week's episode so, yeah...it's been a tough week.

Best of the Rest
Suburgatory, ABC-Look I devoted an entire introduction to this show while giving you almost no pertinent information on its characters, plot, or wtf makes it funny.  I say that's a trend I continue right here.

Worst of the Worst
Community/Parks & Rec/The Office/Whitney, NBC-No none of these shows were on this week...which is the entire GD point.  Come on NBC your ratings are tanking, your production quality is dropping, and at one point you actually thought that this would be a successful TV program.  Now you are taking your bye 5 weeks into the season?  I mean, have the Green Bay Packers taken a week off yet? No, and that's why they're the Super Bowl Champions...and you're the morons who canceled Friday Night Lights.

Comedy Judas "I'll Stab You in the Back" Comedy Traitor OTW: Mitchell & Cam, Modern Family
Look no overweight gay man on TV is funnier than Cam (not that there's anything wrong with that), and no gay-bearded lawyer is a more responsible spouse/father than Mitchell.  But when you are going home at 9 PM on a weekend, then you are lame...and not as funny as you could be.  Remember that when all you losers out there are sitting at home watching American Dad reruns next Saturday night.  Jesus said go forth...and party your face off.

May peace and laughter be with you,
Comedy Jesus Christos

 
 
My children,
As all of you enlighten folks out there know, South Park has recently returned for the second part of it's 15th season (somehow on Comedy Central you are able to go on a hiatus from June to October, and still return to the same season).  And after the brillance that was the humancentipad, the Canadian "royal pudding" and the crack baby athletic association that highlighted season 15 part un, it appears that season 15 part deux has met that very high precedent (even if it hasn't quite yet raised the stakes).  That's because, after mixing the Matrix, the dutch oven, and the terrible yet most hilariously named disease "Ass Burgers" into a solid season 15, part deux premier...South Park has just pulled off one of the hysterical and racially-diverse in it's 218 episode run.

That's right South Park pulled off a racial hat trick this past Wednesday, which may even be a first for famed Mormon attackers Trey Parker and Matt Stone.  Consider this.  First, they made a white 9 year old (Butters) into a heroic symbol for Mexican nationalism.  They incorporate the best Indian (aka Native American) story of all-time (The Last of the Mohicans) into a fictional US/Mexican border dispute.  Then they somehow created a practical storyline where Mexican migrant workers attempted to sneak back onto the wrong side (yes I said wrong side...and meant it) despite the US Border Patrol's best efforts to KEEP them in America. 

Now if Parker and Stone had somehow brought Canadians, the Dutch and women into this insulting/perplexing racial trifecta I would truly be in the awe.  And that's the great thing about South Park.  Just as they push the envelope farther than it's ever been...they came back later and take their insensitivity to a whole new level.  They've been doing it now for 15 years...and, with the show running through at least 2013 I don't see it stopping anytime soon.  South Park doesn't peak, it just keeps on marching on.  As always in the mountains of Colorado...there's still more hilariousness to come.

Weekly Awards

Best of the Best
Comedy Jesus "I'll Die on a Cross to Make You Laugh" Superstar OTW: Butters, South Park
We all know Butters.  Scratch that...we all knew Butters.  But now that he is a bigger superstar in Mexico than a soccer star or ruthless drug dealer, and has sparked a mass migration back across the border, Butters has taken his game to a whole new hysterical level.  And he takes home a well deserved superstar award.

John the Baptist "I'll Show Up and Dunk Your Head in a River" Cameo OTW: Jon Polito, It's Always Sunny
The best part about Jon Polito? He's been in over 100 movies, yet no one knows who the hell he is.  The second best part about Jon Polito?  He legitimately looks exactly how you'd imagined Danny Devito's brother would.  Oh and he sports a killer toupay in some flashbacks scenes in this weeks Sunny episode. More than enough to win in a weak field.

Mary Magdalen "Promiscious Girl" OTW: Shadynasty, It's Always Sunny
A black chick who hooks up with Danny Devito, Jon Polito and a large black man in a 30 minute episode of TV?  Welcome to the Shadynasty (not to be confused with shady-nasty) era on Sunny.  Jeez, not even Mary Magadalen would pull that, because her pimp (which may or may not have been me, aka the Son of God) wouldn't allow that shit...at least not for the peanuts that FX was paying that black chick.

Quote OTW: "It Feels Pretty Good to Have a Bunch of Little Boys be Super Into Me"
-Anne Perkins, Parks and Recreation
If I were a little boy, I'd be super into Anne Perkins as well.  Actually I was...because I'd already know that she'd existence and be pretty hot.  And she was fishing in my visions back then too, it just wasn't in a lake...if you know what I mean.  Yeah, I'm not sure what I mean there either.  Hey-yo!!!

Comedy Jesus "Top Half Dozen Apostles" Power Rankings
1) Parks and Recreation, NBC-Once again to be the best...you gotta beat the best.  And once again...no one did.  Especially when you consider that Anne Perkins is luring little boys with mackerels, Andy Dwyer is claiming to have a vagina, Chris is pro-creating with Jerry's daughter, and Ben is walking around in a Batman costume.  Sounds that some kind of fetish porn doesn't it?  Well, I am God so...your thinking there just disgusts me.

2) South Park, Comedy Central-Read my intro and you'll see just how amazing this episode once.  However, as I f'in wrote earlier, it was a Canadian, a Dutchman and a woman away from ripping the top spot from Parks and Recs lifeless hands.  Yeah TV comedy is like biblical war, and if you ain't killing your enemies...you ain't tryin hard enough.

3) It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia, FX-Frank has a brother who does more blow than he does and smangs black chicks?  Black guys get sent to prison for 6 years for being brutally beaten with a 2 by 4?  Mac is still fat?  What the hell is happening there in Eastern Pennsylvania fellas...and Dee?

4) Workaholics, Comedy Central-Ders is the sexiest Norwegian-American beast I've created since Babe Didrikson Zaharias so him becoming a male model makes sense to me...but that doesn't mean it still ain't funny as f.

5) Modern Family, ABC-Claire is running for city council?  Phil is poisoning his own daughter?  Guncle (gay uncle...not that there's anything wrong with that) Mitchell is taking down fake ID makers?  Man today's families really do defy gender/sexual orientation roles don't they?

6) The League, FX-The League comes back after it's incredible season premier and celebrates some Jewish harvest festival.  Look I don't want to make it seem like The League's ranking dropped due to some sort of grudge I have against the Jewish people (hey it's been almost 2,000 years...I'm over it), because that's not true.  Sometimes you just drop, folks.  The League knows that now.

Worst of the Worst
Community, NBC-Look it pains to throw this show into the shittiest, poop comedy of the week category, but hey...if the shoe fits.  If I hear Abed say "I wonder what's happening in the other dimensions" one more time I'm gonna move the show to CBS and have it played after Cold Case (if that show even still exists) as punishment to the too cool for school cast.  This week's episode wasn't funny.  All you need to know.

The Judas "I'll Stab You in the Back" Comedy Traitor OTW: Sue Heck, The Middle
Look, The Middle is a perfectly fine show, which can be funny when Axel is running around in his underwear (wait...that come out wrong).  But Sue is arguably the worst character on TV.  I am not saying that women aren't funny...I think.  But when an entire episode of your show revolves around an unattractive 15 year old trying out for a cheerleading squad in rural Indiana...you need to reevaluate things.