Dog Bites Man: Assignment: Spring Break
(S01E03) This episode was mostly hilarious with a few moments that didn't quite click. The KHBX newsteam decides to head down to Panama City, Florida to expose the excesses and debauchery of spring break, but soon find themselves getting caught up in the festivities themselves, especially Tillie, who enters a wet T-shirt contest and announces to a crowd of drunken screaming college students that she just refinanced her house, bitches.
Dog Bites Man humor comes from the comedians playing it straight in order to trick regular people into interviews and then saying incredibly bizarre things. Reporter Kevin Beekin (Matt Walsh) first interviews a resident of Panama City and tells her about a new game the kids take part in called "shark jacking" which involves tying meat to their ankles to lure a shark and then holding the shark down while someone else masturbates it. Beekin's disgust with this activity isn't so much that it's dangerous, but that it's rude for the shark to bite someone after such a kind act: "That's literally biting the hand that jacks you off." Later on, Beekin tries to get in good with the kids by telling them about a young rocker named Kurt Cobain who was once the lead singer of the Spin Doctors and took his own life. Of course, none of the kids know what the hell is going on, and most of them are drunk, which doesn't seem to make for the best improvised moments. A clear-headed and sober person will listen to the insane things coming from the mouths of these comedians and try to find some kind of reason in it, as they have no idea they're being pranked. Drunk kids, however, are just drunk kids, so there reaction is simply to mumble incoherently and yell, which can be kind of amusing, but as comedy it doesn't quite work.
The one comedian on this show I've been watching closely is Zach Galifianakis, who plays Alan Finger, the director. Galifianakis plays the character as a kind of quiet loaner, which means he riffs about half as much as the other comedians. Still, when he does it he does it well, such as when he explains to a record producer who's helping him record his new song, "C'mon and Get It (Up in Them Guts)" that his cousin HG from DC is a PA for BET so he needs the CD, ASAP. Later on, right before he performs his song live, he and the two female dancers he hired join hands in a prayer that's essentially a flurry of curse words coming from Alan's mouth. Also, something about a sandwich he ate that's bothering his stomach.
Someone commented on one of my previous posts that the show didn't sound very funny. I'll give them that, because while this show is actually very funny, it is difficult to put into words. There's some great lines, which are always easy to cut and paste into a review, but the real charm comes from the subtle interactions between a bunch of prankster comedians and the "real" people they try to mess with.