Howdy Inter-Webbers, I’m Matt Cohen, and I dig sketch comedy (have we done this one yet?).
Let me clarify… I dig GOOD sketch comedy. There is possibly nothing as unfunny as a filmed comedy sketch that goes wrong. When jokes miss in a feature length film, it doesn’t really matter too much because if one doesn’t work, there is a good chance the next one will. With sketches, it’s a whole different, deadlier ball game. When all of your comedy boils down to one concept, and that one concept doesn’t hit, disaster is a light way of describing what occurs. I have seen some downright awful sketches in my day (most, unfortunately, on network television) and it has made me a bit of a snob when it comes to sketch comedy that I like. Because the truly funny troupes are so hard to find, when I do discover a group I enjoy, I tend to obsess a bit, as I do with most “fringe” things I get into. I can’t help it. There are few things in the world that impress me as much as a quality, successful comedy sketch. Over the years I’ve seen probably thousands of sketches - most crap, some good, and some on a whole different plane all together. This week, I take a look at the sketches I consider to be “The Best of All Time”. Now, that’s not saying the following pieces are the funniest sketches ever - they just happen to be some of my favorite. School’s ’bout to start, kids… Hope you brought me an apple (covered in caramel and Reeses Pieces).
IN NO RANKING ORDER (Choosing a favorite out of these would be like choosing my favorite finger, and though me and my right thumb are tight as hell, I like to think all of my fingers are worth their weight in gold… or at least pleather.)
Oh, and to be safe, these sketches may not be suitable for work… Unless you work somewhere cool
Premise: Ken Doral (David Cross) is the host of a pre-taped call in show. Confused yet? Each week on the program, Ken takes calls that deal with the next week’s subjects. Still confused? It appears everyone is - except Ken.
Premise: Denny Whitkin (Cross) is attending an open casting call for a role in a television show. He forgot to bring a chair. Can he borrow yours?
Premise: A small bed and breakfast has some new guests arrive for a stay. They may or may not be formal Nazi war criminals.
Premise: What to do with a bored cat? Let Confuse-a-Cat do the hard work for you!
Premise: Aziz and Paul are two down on their luck paparazzi who come up with an idea to snag the hottest photos and get into the hottest locations. Three magic words… Olsen. Twin. Masks.
Premise: Clell Tickle (Aziz) is the world’s foremost Indie music publicity master. Why, you may ask? Simple… Clell doesn’t take no for an answer..
Premise: The place? Ford Theatre. The time? 18 something something (cmon!). The players? Abe Lincoln and John Wilkes Booth. Find out what really happened on that fateful day.
Premise: Or is this what really happened?
Premise: Ray McCooney (David Walliams) is the proprietor of a small bed and breakfast in Scotland. Some customers have some questions regarding their meal, and Ray has some answers. Have you ever heard?…
Premise: Daffyd Thomsan (Matt Lucas) is the only gay in his small Welsh village… Or so he likes to maintain.
Premise: Reece Shearsmith is Papa Lazarou, some sort of clown/minstrel/traveling salesman/horrific monster. Papa’s wife needs to use the restroom. The only question is, will Dave be home to answer the door?
Premise: Pamela Dove (Shearsmith) is an aspiring actress. What she is aspiring to is anyone’s guess. Jedd Hunter (Steve Pemberton), famed commercial director, gives Pam her first audition.
Premise: Matt Walsh and Ian Roberts discuss ways to avoid being intimidated at work. It involves pennies and ass.
Premise: The UCB four eat at a Chinese restaurant, and when the fortune cookies are brought out, Ian Robert’s lucky numbers won’t be the only thing revealed.
That’s the list. Love it? Hate it? Love me? (Not likely) Hate me? (More likely) Leave a comment, and while you’re at it, leave a link to your own favorite comedy sketches. I’m sure I left out some of your personal bests (I did it on purpose, out of spite), so be a nice neighbor and share with the class.
Wasn’t that fun, kids? I had a blast - so much fun, in fact, that I think I need a week to recover. So check back on the get back. And, as always,
“Keep em’ bagged and boarded”
Matt Cohen is currently wondering if it rains down in Africa.
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