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April 23, 2014

What happened to Jim Belushi?

by Paul Goebel, posted Jul 12th 2007 11:02AM

What is wrong with this picture?I remember when I was a young man many years ago, watching a short-lived sitcom called Working Stiffs. I was enthralled with a very young and talented comic-turned-actor named Michael Keaton but even more so with the man who played his brother, Jim Belushi.

Since I was really just a kid, I was unable to be a real fan of John Belushi. Sure, I had heard about some of the stuff he did on Saturday Night Live and my parents talked about him a lot, but I was just too young to grasp his genius at the time. Jim, however, was a different story.

Here was this funny, chubby guy, basically a kid-friendly version of his brother doing what I wanted to grow up to do: be funny on television. I was an instant fan.

As I grew up, Jim's career also matured. Right about the time I was old enough to become an expert on Saturday Night Live he became a regular cast member. Alongside Martin Short, Chris Guest and Billy Crystal, he helped to mold my comic sensibilities as well as my opinions on television in general.

Eventually he made the inevitable move to features and I followed him directly to my local movie house. His role as Bernie in About Last Night was one of the few saving graces of that movie and when a friend and I saw The Principal together, we decided it was the best high school movie ever made.

Then something strange happened. Shortly after I graduated from college, Jim made a movie called Curly Sue. It was clear that something was terribly wrong. More crap followed, such as Once Upon a Crime, Traces of Red and, of course, the "all-time comedy classic" Jingle All the Way. The stench from these films was almost palpable.

The final straw came when Jim decided to join Dan Aykroyd and John Goodman in their bastardization of The Blues Brothers Band. I hold no ill will toward Aykroyd, since I can't blame him for wanting to try and recapture what is probably the shining moment in his entire career, but what was Jim thinking? I'll never get over the night I was watching Letterman and Jim was a guest. After asking about the Blues Brother tour, Letterman asked Jim to sing a song and with a straight face he stood in front of Paul Shaffer (his brother's former keyboardist and bandleader) and stumbled through an off-key version of 'Sweet Home Chicago'.

I was dumbstruck. Who told Jim that he was anywhere near as talented as his brother? Who told him he could replace John? Who told him that he could sing? It was clear to me that that cool guy who babysat Scott Baio on Who's Watching the Kids was gone.

In 2001, Jim welcomed in the new millennium by introducing America to one of the most heinous sitcoms ever developed, According to Jim. Aside from letting Jim live out his fantasy of having kids with a hottie like Courtney Thorne-Smith, the only purpose this show serves is to remind us all that the multi-camera sitcom is, indeed, as dead as Jim's brother.

As a post-script, a friend of mine was introduced to Jim at a party once, and Jim felt it necessary to ignore my friend and push him aside on his way to the bar. Why Jim Belushi feels that he has the right to "big-time" anyone is a mystery that will never be solved. At least not until Gov. Schwarzenegger decides to re-team with Jim for Red Heat 2: Ridzik Goes to Russia.

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Alison

Yeah - I saw this interview with him about his new movie Underdog and they mostly talked about other stuff (Like John Lovitz beating up andy Dick) - haha http://hooman.tv/blog/?p=65

August 13 2007 at 9:31 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
ken

i forgot to post that i love according to jim-its the only show left on tv i watch.

July 21 2007 at 10:38 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
ken

the only difference between jim b and john b is john died before he could screw up his career-oh wait he made neihbors....if he was still alive wed see according to john...

July 21 2007 at 10:32 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Erin

Michael-so glad you mentioned Taking Care of Business. I loved that movie! :)

July 17 2007 at 5:22 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Michael

I can't believe no one's brought up Taking Care of Business yet! Charles Grodin RULES in that movie! I'm in sales and carry a day planner by default. If you carry one, there's no way that movie isn't a depiction of your worst nightmare come to life. Add to that a little bit of everything that makes a film great - fast cars, hot chicks (with a nice gratuitous nude scene), a prison break and the Cubs in the world series (ok, for Cubs fans anyway) and you've got yourself a winner!

Besides, any film that features a business meeting toast to "Big Tits" and then has Gates McFadden show hers off just has to be included! Outstanding!

http://www.myspace.com/scoobarama

July 13 2007 at 5:44 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Phish

now these are they type of interesting articles that should be posted during the slow summer months, not that crap adam finley spews from his rancid fingertips!

July 13 2007 at 5:05 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
jm

Salvador, with Jimbo and James Woods. Or is this whole post just a jim sux rant?

July 13 2007 at 12:36 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
kip

TV geek :
red heat
the principal
about last night
only the lonely

Great movies. But the movie that killed him was k-9. Stuck a fork in his target audience by far and curly sue was bad. Ed O'Neil had one of those as well.

I'd also like to remark that i am pissed that you wrote this diatribe because up until now I enjoyed reading your posts. You bring cred to this blog because you embody the true tv fan who sees tv for what it is.

Instead you dump on a show that is in syndication then you bring up something that happened to a friend and end it with the unorgiinal line as a refence to brother who has passed . This is your mulligan Paul. Don;t let us down like this again

July 12 2007 at 9:27 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Jaymez

With Rodney gone, According to Jim is the only watchable sitcom on TV right now.

July 12 2007 at 6:27 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Jim

Jim Belushi sucks. Always has, always will.

That his show has lasted so long on ABC is a mystery.

July 12 2007 at 4:54 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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